Vice President General Counsel

Location: Seattle

Company: Foss Maritime

Employment Type: Full Time

Region: Pacific Northwest

Job Category: Legal

Publish Date: December 10, 2018

Company Description: For more than a century, Foss Maritime has set the standard for marine transportation with leading edge technology, engineering, and shipbuilding. Combining global reach with local expertise, Foss is recognized for its state-of-the-art fleet, experienced and dedicated crews, knowledgeable customer service staff, and world-class engineers. Along with our independent subsidiaries the company employs thousands of people throughout the United States. With hundreds of tugs and barges we provide harbor services and transportation operations in all major U.S. West Coast ports – including the Columbia and Snake River system. Internationally, Foss supports customers across the Pacific Rim, in Europe, South America and the Arctic.


  • Full Time
  • Anywhere
  • Applications have closed

Foss Maritime


Oversees all aspects of the organization’s legal affairs and serves as an integral member of the organization’s executive team. Responsible for all aspects of the Office of the General Counsel, as well as the Company’s ethics and compliance program and risk management activities.


  • Provide accurate legal guidance to the executive staff on all legal matters that impact or may impact the organization.
  • Manage litigation and outside counsel.
  • Attend executive meetings and provide strategic legal advice to management.
  • Together with Foss team, set internal governance policies and manage the impact of external factors.
  • Identify proactive solutions that will eliminate or mitigate risks.
  • Create associations of trust and respect with key stakeholders.
  • Work effectively with external parties (including but not limited to customers, vendors, regulators, external counsel).
  • Attract, develop, direct, motivate and drive performance of team members.
  • Draft and review, as necessary, contracts for customers, vendors and others.
  • Achieve goals of the Office of the General Counsel.
  • Deal with complex and significant matters that cut across legal and related areas.
  • Keep abreast of legislative changes.
  • Utilize Legal Tracker for legal matter management and billing.
  • Work cooperatively with members of the Saltchuk legal department.

Compliance Program

  • Management of the Ethics and Compliance Program.
  • Investigation of hotline matters as assigned.
  • Conduct ethics and compliance training activities.
  • Ensure effective compliance with all laws and regulations and any policies administered by the Office of Legal Counsel.

Risk Management

  • General oversight of the Risk Management Program
  • Establish and review Risk Management Strategies

Supervisory and Leadership of Direct Staff

  • Responsible for all matters of employment including recruiting, training, development, promotion, discipline and termination.
  • Understands and complies with Foss’ Affirmative Action Plan, EEO, Non-Discrimination, Harassment, and all other HR policies and procedures.
  • Effectively communicates function and/or regional goals and objectives.
  • Provides direction and leadership to achieve company Core Values, Mission and Safety Vision.
  • Processes performance evaluations in a timely, effective and fair manner.
  • Directs, motivates and develops employees for maximum performance.
  • Establishes goals, monitors progress and results of direct reports.
  • Addresses inter- and intra-department training needs and counseling, as needed.


  • Experience within the maritime industry.
  • Proven understanding of the regulatory aspects of the maritime industry, including blue and green water companies preferred.
  • Knowledge of wide range of maritime regulations on a federal, state and local port level.
  • Partner-level private practice experience required, with at least five years of prior partner-level experience required.
  • Sufficient overall legal knowledge (corporate law, litigation, maritime law and employment/labor law) to perform duties above.
  • Experience with U.S. Coast Guard preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to use legal and business knowledge, financial acumen, innovative thinking and sound judgment to solve problems and pursue opportunities for improvement.
  • High degree of professional ethics and integrity.
  • Excellent judgement and analytical skills.
  • First class interpersonal and communication skills.
  • In-depth understanding of how legal issues impact organizations.
  • Must be able to travel.


  • Law degree.
  • License to practice law in Washington preferred (will be necessary to obtain).
  • MA or BS in Business Administration will be considered an asset.
  • At least eight years’ prior General Counsel experience.
  • Prior supervisory experience required.

Foss Maritime Company is an Equal Opportunity – Affirmative Action Employer and a VEVRAA Federal Contractor. We are committed to a diverse workforce and taking affirmative action to employ and advance in employment qualified women, minorities, individuals with disabilities and protected veterans. Foss is a drug-free employer and a participant of the E-Verify Employment Verification Program.