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Name and title: Paula E. Boggs, executive vice president, general counsel and secretary Age: 48 Call me Starbucks: In 1971, Starbucks Corp. opened shop in Seattle, and still maintains headquarters there. The specialty coffee retailer now has 12,400 shops in 35 countries spanning North America, Europe, the Middle East, Latin America and the Pacific Rim. It owns the lion’s share, with the rest franchised or licensed, primarily in airports and shopping centers. About 40 million customers per week sample Starbucks’ coffee, tea, drinks, food items and accessories. The coffee king has also entered into the music business. Music compilations, an in-store CD-burning service, a joint venture with XM Satellite Radio, and production, marketing and distribution deals for the likes of Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles and Alanis Morissette are some of its recent moves. Sales of almost $7.8 billion at the conclusion of the last fiscal year account for the firm’s No. 338 slot on the Fortune 500. Starbucks, which took its name from a major character in Moby Dick, has 150,000 “partners” in its employ. Daily duties: Boggs oversees all facets of Starbucks’ legal affairs, including real estate, employment, compliance, litigation, corporate and securities, international, intellectual property and commercial matters. Trademark is a particularly busy area. Boggs describes herself as having once been a specialist, but is now a generalist. A typical day does not exist for the general counsel, who adds that “in five years, no day has been like any other.” She reports to President, Chief Executive Officer and Director James L. Donald. Starbucks has launched significant joint ventures with companies including Pepsi-Cola Co., Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream Holdings Inc. and Kraft Foods Inc. Boggs has been involved in these deals, mostly in an advisory role. The firm has become more global, and has engaged in a number of strategic business relationships outside of the United States, including China. Boggs paid a visit there on the firm’s behalf two years ago, and plans soon to make a return trip. Foreign laws “have a lot of variability,” and there is an increased need for subject-matter expertise abroad, she said. The team has to deal with immigration issues concerning employees on occasion, but Boggs herself is not actively involved in those matters. Boggs’ team interacts regularly with regulators such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Like every other publicly traded company, she said, Starbucks has “an intense relationship” with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. Audit committee controls and disclosure requirements have become routine, but “the broader governance side is still evolving.” The general issue of executive compensation at Starbucks is now under the microscope. Legal team and outside counsel: Starbucks’ legal arm consists of about 150 people, including paralegals, support staff and the ethics and compliance team. There are between 55 and 60 lawyers. One-half to 60% of the legal load is handled in-house. External counsel are provided by Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld; Seattle-based Perkins Coie, whose labor and employment practice Boggs considers vital to Starbucks’ relationships with its employees; the Opus Law Group in Seattle for real estate and in a variety of other areas; Seattle’s Davis Wright Tremaine for commercial transactions and China business support; and Baker & McKenzie and DLA Piper, which concentrate on Starbucks’ international work. Focus on diversity: A diverse work force is of high importance to Starbucks and its legal chief, who said that “it starts with ensuring that our own house is in order. Within the law department, every member believes he or she is part of the diversity story.” By tapping into diverse talent pools including, but not limited to, race, sex and ethnicity, both the firm and the individual employees are better off, Boggs said. Relationships with the gay, lesbian and disabled legal communities “yield great candidates,” she added, and law students, including those of color, are brought into Starbucks for summer internships. Additionally, the team holds its outside law firms to a “very high standard,” and monitors their progress on the diversity front. Boggs has been praised by the Urban League, the Washington State Bar Association and the American Bar Association for fostering diversity and inclusion. Starbucks’ legal group also places a premium on pro bono work, striving to maintain a reputation as a leader in providing services to those who can’t afford to pay. Boggs is chairwoman of Legal Aid for Washington state. Route to present position: Boggs joined Starbucks in her current capacity in September 2002. Previously, she spent five years as a vice president at Dell Computer Corp., handling the legal side of products, operations and information technology systems. From 1995 to 1997, she was a partner at Seattle’s former Preston Gates & Ellis, now part of Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Preston Gates Ellis, where she specialized in corporate civil litigation. She prosecuted fraud and regulatory crime as an assistant U.S. attorney for the Western District of Washington from 1988 to 1994. As a young lawyer, Boggs was a staff member within the Office of the White House Counsel during the Iran-Contra investigation. She was one of three attorneys who worked on responses to interrogatories from the independent counsel to President Reagan. She was one of two lawyers who defended the deposition of then-Vice President George H.W. Bush. The “historical moment” taught her important lessons, she said. It caused her to be “very good at risk management,” and provided valuable insight into the limits of power. Personal: Born in the other Washington, in the District of Columbia, Boggs is a former U.S. Army officer. She enjoys running in her spare time and is a singer/songwriter. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in international studies from The Johns Hopkins University in 1981. She received her juris doctorate in 1984 from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, where she was named 1998′s Recent Alumna of the Year. Last book and movie: Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling Less of More, by Chris Anderson, and Flags of Our Fathers.

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