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Name and title: Brian D. Zuckerman, vice president-general counsel and secretary Age: 34 Tune-up time: Last year was a transition time for The Pep Boys-Manny, Moe & Jack, the Philadelphia-based auto parts retailer. “I hate to use the analogy, but 2003 was in many ways a tune-up,” said General Counsel Brian D. Zuckerman. Zuckerman’s personal and professional overhaul began on Jan. 21, when he raced out of the office after his wife Jennifer went into labor. The next day, company President George Babich called to congratulate him on the birth of his second son and on his promotion to general counsel. Zuckerman had little time to reflect on these changes. In the first months of 2003, he completed corporate governance changes mandated by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, finalized a $12.6 million retirement package for outgoing CEO Mitchell Leibovitz and immersed himself in immigration law to prepare the paperwork for the hiring of new CEO Larry Stevenson, a Canadian national. Stevenson kept Zuckerman zipping with a major corporate restructuring involving the closing of 33 unprofitable stores, termination of 900 employees and individualized separation agreements with top officers. Thanks to a good communication strategy and legal prep work, said Zuckerman, Pep Boys has avoided any litigation related to the downsizing. The company has come a long way since 1921, when the original Pep Boys-four World War I vets named Manny Rosenfeld, Moe Strauss, Moe Radavitz and Jack Jackson-pooled $800 to establish an auto parts store in Philadelphia. Today, Pep Boys is the nation’s largest automotive parts and service chain, with 22,000 employees in 595 stores nationwide, reporting more than $2 billion in annual revenue. Auto shop attorneys: Zuckerman supervises in-house counsel Ellen Frank, who deals with real estate and environmental matters, and Janice Levin, who oversees litigation and regulatory compliance. Soon after his promotion to GC, Zuckerman took over management of employment-related litigation, which was formerly overseen by the human resources department. In December 2003, he switched the company’s main outside counsel from New York’s Willkie Farr & Gallagher to the Philadelphia office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. “There’s no shortage of national-, if not international-level players here in Philadelphia,” he said. Morgan Lewis handles the firm’s securities, employment and litigation matters. For intellectual property issues, Pep Boys uses Washington’s Jacobson Holman. Outside real estate counsel is Philadelphia’s Fox Rothschild. Futura v. Fortera: Pep Boys has battled the world’s leading tire maker and a Big Three auto company to protect its “Futura” brand of tires for cars, SUVs and light trucks. In 2001, the company sued Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. in federal court in Philadelphia, alleging trademark infringement by Goodyear’s “Fortera” tire brand. The court denied Pep Boys’ preliminary injunction motion, ruling that the plaintiff had not shown a likelihood of brand confusion. Pep Boys is having better luck against Ford Motor Co. In the mid-1990s, the two companies sparred over Ford’s aftermarket sale of badges and insignia with the “Futura” name, which recalled the Ford Falcon Futura of the early 1960s. A 1995 settlement agreement restricted Ford’s future rights to the Futura mark. After learning of plans to market a new Ford Futura sedan in 2005, Pep Boys sent Ford a cease-and-desist letter in July 9, 2003, asserting that the use of the Futura name violated the 1995 settlement agreement. Two weeks later, Ford responded with a pre-emptive lawsuit seeking a declaratory judgment that it retained rights to sell cars under the Falcon Futura name. In December, the federal court in Detroit ruled for Pep Boys. Ford has indicated that it won’t use the Futura mark, and Pep Boys is seeking to recover its legal costs, Zuckerman said. Reservist suit: Erik Balodis, a U.S. Navy reservist and former Pep Boys store manager in Tucson, Ariz., sued the company for firing him in 2002, allegedly because he was called up for military duty. “This guy was terminated for poor performance,” said Zuckerman, denying that the firing was related to Balodis’ military status. The federal district court in Tucson has sent the case to arbitration. As retold on the Internet and in radio talk shows, the story of a single employment lawsuit soon morphed into a rumor that Pep Boys had fired all employees who were mobilized for the Iraq War, which, in turn, prompted scattered calls for a boycott of the chain. After initially declining comment, the company launched a public relations offensive, touting the 25 Pep Boys employees recently called up for military service, the veteran status of the original Manny, Moe and Jack, and CEO Larry Stevenson’s service as a Canadian paratrooper. In a March 20, 2003, press release, Pep Boys said that it “would never terminate an employee for military service” and that “those in the media who have falsely accused the Company of such a deed . . . will face the legal consequences.” For emphasis, Pep Boys announced that it had retained Sprague & Sprague, a Philadelphia firm well known locally for representing defamation plaintiffs, “to defend the good name that it has . . . maintained over the last eighty-two years.” “No comment is not the company line any more,” said Zuckerman. Route to the top: Zuckerman grew up in Marlboro, N.J. He received a bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Binghamton (now Binghamton University) in 1991, and his J.D. from Temple University School of Law in 1994. After law school, Zuckerman signed on as an associate with Philadelphia’s Klehr, Harrison, Harvey, Branzburg & Ellers. In 1997, he moved six blocks away to Pepper Hamilton, where he concentrated on general corporate and securities law. Zuckerman went in-house at Pep Boys in 1999. Personal: Zuckerman lives in Voorhees, N.J., with his wife Jennifer, a painter, printmaker and former art teacher, and sons Mason, 1, and Jake, 3. For Jake’s first birthday party, Zuckerman and his two brothers dressed up in the large-headed Manny, Moe and Jack mascot costumes. He does not believe that the children were traumatized by this experience. Last book and movie: Green Eggs and Ham, by Dr. Seuss, and Rescue Heroes: The Movie. “Who has time to pleasure read or go to the movies with two toddlers?” asked Zuckerman.

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