After Alfreda Bradley-Coar graduated from General Electric’s new manager development course as a mid-level inside counsel some years ago, she was so inspired that she went on to get her MBA. Alfreda is now the general counsel, U.S. & Canada, of GE Healthcare. “I’ve learned to think like a business person,” she says.

Of course, most companies don’t have entire campuses devoted to ongoing training like General Electric. And even the largest and most forward thinking employers rarely create advancement training designed specifically for their attorneys.

Enter IC’s visionary publisher Lloyd Johnson, who also carries the title community leader. He is backing up this unique title by creating programs that help inside counsel advance their careers and become even more important strategic voices within their companies. Lloyd’s initiatives include the Transformative Leadership Awards, Project 5/165 and R3-100.

Now comes the first annual Mary Ann Hynes Institute, to be hosted at Deloitte University in Dallas in March. This will be two days of intensive training on financial acumen, boardroom presence, and strategic innovation. “We want to chart a path to new and different roles that may or may not be a general counsel position,” Lloyd explains. Attending the Institute is by invitation only and includes the goal of advancing more women into leadership roles.

The event is named after one of the most prominent female general counsel of our generation. Mary Ann Hynes is a pioneer who held the top legal spots at Wolters Kluwer, Sundrand, IMC Global and Ingredion. “Formal leadership training is invaluable,” Hynes said. “From formal training, you gain confidence, strength and courage.”

She continued, “The Hynes Institute will help attendees identify their personal career opportunities and provide an actionable framework to unlock their potential.”

“Attendees will be provided direct access to leaders who have been there and can provide their unique perspective,” Hynes stated, while noting that “learning will come from every direction and from every participant. Everyone who attends is both mentor and mentee.”

I also spoke with Tamika Tremaglio, principal with Deloitte Financial Advisory Services and a faculty participant for Project 5/165. Her enthusiasm for helping inside counsel is infectious.

“I’m excited to take our relationship with InsideCounsel to another level and welcome participants to Deloitte University,” Tremaglio said. “Empowering this accomplished group of women with C-suite level leadership training is important to me, and as a firm we are proud to play host.”

I had the privilege of joining Mary Ann and Tamika on the faculty for a Project 5/165 event, and I can assure attendees that an amazing experience awaits them in Dallas.

As for readers who crave the same experience Alfreda had with GE, and who were not eligible for invitation to the Mary J. Hynes Institute, more opportunities are on the way. Near term, I encourage you to consider attending this year’s InsideCounsel Superconference. Lloyd Johnson had just stepped into his new role before Superconference last year. Now that programming is firmly under his leadership, you will see a focus on the kind of valuable training that will help you advance from within, or become even more marketable to your next employer.