Meet The Team

Catherine Alman MacDonagh, JD

Catherine Alman MacDonagh, JD

CEO and Founder

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Catherine Alman MacDonagh, JD is the founder of the Legal Lean Sigma Institute and the developer of both Legal Lean Sigma® and the award winning Legal WorkOut®, a collaborative method for lawyers, business professionals, and clients to engage in process improvement together that has won multiple awards, including the 2018 Process Excellence Award for Best Business Transformation Process at the OPEX Week: Business Transformation World Summit.

A former corporate counsel and law firm executive, Catherine is a Legal Lean Sigma® Black Belt and a certified Six Sigma Green Belt who now teaches and provides training and consulting services with a focus on process improvement, project management, operational and process excellence, organizational development and strategy. She co-founded the Legal Lean Sigma Institute to provide consulting and the first and only process improvement and project management certifications, courses, and workshops designed specifically for the legal profession.  Legal WorkOut®

Catherine is an adjunct professor at Suffolk Law School and George Washington University (Master’s in Law Firm Management) and a frequent guest lecturer at other academic institutions. She is the author of Lean Six Sigma for Law Firms and the co-author of The Woman Lawyer’s Rainmaking Game and The Law Firm Associate’s Guide to Personal Marketing and Selling Skills. She is a contributing author to six books: Redefining Matter Management: A Best Practice Guide to Improving Processes and Profitability; The Lawyer’s Guide to Project ManagementThe Bigger Picture: Driving Client Value Through CollaborationThe Lawyer’s Guide to Process Improvement; and The Procurement Handbook.

Honors and awards Catherine has received include: Fellow, College of Law Practice Management; Legal Marketing Association Hall of Fame (the association’s highest honor); Boston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40; two years on the prestigious MLF 50 (Marketing the Law Firm Top 50) List; and several Legal Marketing Association Your Honor Awards.

Catherine is a founder of both the Coalition of Professional Services Providers and the Legal Sales and Service Organization, which presents the annual RainDance Conference. She served on the Legal Marketing Association International Board, as LMA New England Chapter President for two terms, and on many LMA committee and task forces. She is a member of the Association of Legal Administrators, where is contributing to the development of the Uniform Process Based Management System.

Catherine lives in Massachusetts with her family, which includes three Havanese dogs. She is a sports fan and a foodie and enjoys volunteering, especially for The Woodward School and The University of Miami Circl.

MO ZAIN AJAZ

MO ZAIN AJAZ

Faculty and Affiliated Consultant

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Mo Zain Ajaz is an intrapreneur working for National Grid plc as a GC and COO as well as the founder of LEx360, a legal optimisation consultancy. He is also a member of the Legal Lean Sigma Institute faculty and an affiliated consultant.

Recognised as one of the six in-house role models for the Financial Times 2018, being in the Hot 100 for the Lawyer Magazine in 2016, as well as being recognised for his contribution for numerous industry awards include best in-house team of the year 2017 and best legal technology adoption.

Mo is a Director of global energy giant with responsibilities for the legal function, change, process and communications. A practicing lawyer with deep experience in environmental, real estate and planning law. Holding a MBA from the prestigious Warwick Business School and a Masters degree in Science in Lean Enterprise from Buckingham University with a Distinction.

As part his consultancy work he has helped numerous GC’s undertake strategic reviews, efficiency and people development programmes, process optimisations, legal technology deployments and outside counsel best practice reviews.  In addition, he has helped law firms in client journey improvements, alignment of service delivery, process optimisation, what clients want and pricing strategies.

Mo is also the chair of Winmark’s Centre of Legal Operational Excellence, a regular writer for Thompson Reuters and Legal Business World and an active member of CLOC and ACCA.  Mo has presented key notes in Spain, Ireland, England, New York and Scotland.

Mo is has had excellent feedback his regular training programmes including topics like design thinking, digital transformation, process optimisation, legal operations, KPI’s and metrics, legal strategy and spend management.

Mo lives in Birmingham, England. He is married with two boys. He has a keen interest in diversity issues, exploring lean, operational and process excellence in the legal market.

Mark Beese

Mark Beese

Affiliated Consultant

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Mark is an affiliated consultant. He is President of Leadership for Lawyers, LLC, a consultancy focused on helping lawyers become better leaders and business developers. He provides training, coaching and consultation to firms in the areas of leadership development, business development and marketing with law firms across North America. His clients range from small, single office firms to global Amlaw 100 firms.

Mark serves as on-call faculty at the Center for Creative Leadership, primarily involved in the design and delivery of bespoke and open enrollment leadership development programs for professionals, including lawyers, accountants, consultants and executives. He focuses on issues of change leadership, team development, influence, cross-generation issues, collaboration, innovation and design thinking.

He is a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management. In 2014 he was inducted into the Legal Marketing Association Hall of Fame, one of only 25 leaders to have received this honor.

He is the former Chair of the Lawyer Leadership Committee of the American Bar Association, Law Practice Management Division. He is also a professional member of the International Leadership Association, the National Speakers Association, the Legal Marketing Association and the College of Law Practice Management.

Mark has more than 25 years of experience as a chief marketing officer for professional services firms. He has served as Chief Marketing Officer for Holland & Hart, a 450-attorney law firm based in Denver, Director of Marketing for the New York law firm of Hodgson Russ and Director of Marketing for Kideney Architects in Buffalo, NY.

Mark is also an adjunct faculty member at the University of Denver Sturm School of Law, where he teaches Strategic Marketing and Business Development. He is certified and trained to administer several assessments, including the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), DiSC, the Change Style Instrument (CSI), Influence Style Indicator (ISI) and the Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) among many other assessments and coaching tools.

Mark has received numerous awards including “Marketing Director of the Year” from the Marketing Partner Forum, the “IQ Award” for innovation by the Boulder County Business Report, five “Your Honor Awards” from the Legal Marketing Association, the PR Legal News Award and the ABA Law Practice Management Magazine Edge Award.

Mark received his B.S. and M.B.A. (cum laude) from the University of Buffalo. He is a former international board member of the Legal Marketing Association and past president of the Rocky Mountain Legal Marketing Association. He is a past chair of the Marketing Committee of Terralex, an international association of law firms in 93 countries. He served as a faculty member of the Marketing Directors Institute and is a frequent speaker at the Marketing Partner Forum and Legal Marketing Association conferences. He has spoken to dozens of LMA and ALA Chapters throughout the United States. He is a frequent contributor to law practice management publications.

An Eagle Scout, Mark volunteers in the realm of International Scouting, promoting peace, sustainability and collaboration among the world’s 40 million Scouts. He leads expeditions to give Scouts opportunities to build relationships with people who have different cultural, religious and life experiences than them.

He is the former chair of the Leadership Denver Alumni Association, and a past board member of the Denver Metro Chamber Foundation. Denver Business Journal named Mark as one of Denver’s 40 under Forty leaders.

Timothy B. Corcoran

Timothy B. Corcoran

Adjunct Faculty and Affiliated Consultant

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Tim is a principal with the Corcoran Consulting Group, He advises law firm leaders, in-house counsel, and legal service providers on how to profit during a time of great change. This includes assisting law firm leaders with business strategy, primarily in the areas of operational excellence and business growth, and assisting in-house counsel manage preferred provider programs. He also advises legal service providers on market dynamics and sales force readiness. He is an expert on law firm and in-house counsel relations.

Prior to launching Corcoran Consulting Group, Mr. Corcoran was a senior consultant with Altman Weil, Inc., where he co-founded the first Legal Project Management practice. As a long-time senior executive with both LexisNexis and Thomson Reuters, Mr. Corcoran directed business strategy, product development, sales and marketing efforts for market-leading products in the areas of competitive intelligence, client relationship management and web marketing. As Marketing Director with American Lawyer Media, he helped launch Counsel Connect, the first social network exclusively for lawyers. He also served as the CEO of Epiq Systems Class Actions & Claims Solutions, where he initiated a successful turnaround effort including a reorganization of marketing, sales force and strategic business development activities, and as Director of Practice Development for White & Case, leading practice group strategy, marketing, business development, competitive intelligence and client relations.

Tim is is a popular lecturer on law firm business development and operational issues. His articles on the legal industry have appeared in Legal WeekLawyers WeeklyCorporate CounselCounsel to Counsel, Forbes, Corporate Legal Times and other publications. He authors Corcoran’s Business of Law blog, is a contributing author to The Procurement Handbook and serves as a columnist for both Marketing the Law Firm newsletter and PSMG Magazine (UK) and periodically hosts the In-House Legal podcast for Lex Mundi on the Legal Talk Network.

He was the 2014 President and served as Treasurer and co-chair of the Annual Conference Committee of the Legal Marketing Association. He is an elected Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management, a Fellow and past faculty member of the Center for International Legal Studies and an Associate Member of the ABA Law Practice Management section.

Ronna West Cross, JD

Ronna West Cross, JD

Adjunct Faculty and Senior Consultant

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Ronna is a Senior Consultant with the Legal Lean Sigma Institute. She stands out in the growing field of Legal Project Management (LPM) with her proven track record in applied Project Management (PM). She helps lawyers and business professionals extrapolate the concepts and tools of PM and apply them to their matters and projects. Working with someone who actually has been a successful project manager is highly effective for those who want to do more than just learn the stages of LPM.

As a lawyer, Ronna represented and advised Boards of Education and school Superintendents on education, employment and constitutional matters in North Carolina. In Boston, she represented clients and managed matters in all phases of commercial, employment and securities litigation and arbitration. She then transitioned to trademark law and counseled clients in trademark clearance, registration, and enforcement. A testament to her abilities and skills is that she managed the firm’s Trademark Practice as an Associate.

As Global Director of Client Initiatives for an AmLaw100 firm in the Dallas office, she was responsible for progressing projects through all stages of project management. Ronna’s primary focus was the Global Strategic Advisors team, comprised of firm leaders and former United States Presidential Cabinet members, Ambassadors and Senators.

Her experience and skills inspired trust and qualified her to originate, plan, execute, monitor and close a complex and sophisticated engagement to form a $1.3 billion fund-of-funds to invest in a Canadian pension’s $12.5 billion global infrastructure alliance.  She was the designated manager for a former United States Treasury Secretary’s legal projects in Europe, China and the Middle East including a $9 billion infrastructure project in Saudi Arabia with a former European Prime Minister’s team, as well as projects in London, Spain, Hong Kong and Shanghai for one of the largest privately owned conglomerates in China.

At the Department level, Ronna’s legal matter management expertise resulted in her team and the Business Department lawyers repeatedly engaging the highest number of new clients with the fewest number of meetings. At the Practice Group level, Ronna was responsible for strategic planning, execution, budgeting, monitoring and closing business with the leaders and lawyers for the Private Investment Funds, Construction & Real Estate, Infrastructure, Intellectual Property, Corporate Finance, Securities and M&A, and Tax practices.

Ronna lives in Dallas. She enjoys spending time with her family, fine dining, trying new cuisines, experiencing new cultures, hiking, and horseback riding. She is on the Advisory Board for FCA Wrestling, and volunteers at Refuge City, a 501(c)(3) ministry dedicated to ending sex trafficking.

FREDERICK J. ESPOSITO, JR., MBA, CLM

FREDERICK J. ESPOSITO, JR., MBA, CLM

Faculty and Consultant

FREDERICK J. ESPOSITO, JR., MBA, CLM

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Frederick J. Esposito, Jr, MBA, CLM, is a member of the Legal Lean Sigma Institute faculty and consulting team. He is Chief Operating Officer of the regional law firm Rivkin Radler LLP. Fred has more than 25 years of law and accounting firm experience. He is a thought-leader, frequent speaker and an author of articles on a wide-range of topics and best practices, including billing and collections, profitability, attorney compensation systems, alternative fee arrangements, process improvement, project management and strategic planning, for Law Practice Magazine, Law Practice Today and Attorney at Work, among others.

In June 2013, he was inducted into the National Speakers Association and in April and September 2012, respectively, he received ALA’s Outstanding Association Volunteer Award for his service as a leader and national speaker and was named CFO of the Year by Long Island Business News.  He has been a Certified Legal Manager (CLM)SM  since 2006, the only CLM on Long Island, and from May 2013 – May 2016, was the Chair of ALA’s Certification Committee.  In addition to presenting for the ALA, he is also a frequent author and speaker for the ABA, BNA/Bloomberg, Lexis/Nexis and Thomson Reuters.

 

In the Fall of 2016, he became a Faculty Advisor and Presenter for the Nassau County Bar Association Academy of Law, and recently joined the Legal Lean Sigma Institute as adjunct faculty and consultant.  In May 2018, Fred earned a Yellow Belt Certification in Legal Lean Sigma and Project Management and is working towards his Green Belt Certification.  Fred has a specialization in financial and organizational management and has also managed and worked in a consulting capacity with several law firms, both international and domestic.

Aly Lynch, JD

Aly Lynch, JD

Instructor/Consultant

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Aly has worked in and with law firms of various sizes and areas of practice since 1998, doing everything from office services to managing the personnel, finances, facilities, technology, and more for a firm. She has provided customer service, legal research assistance, and training on behalf of a global corporation, served as a marketing and library manager for a medium-sized law firm, taught legal writing in an ABA-accredited paralegal education program, and served as the business executive for a fast-growing, medium-market law firm.

Since 2015, Aly has served on the Association of Legal Administrators’ Regional Legal Management Conference Planning Committee and is Chair of the 2017 Committee. ALA is a professional association comprised of almost 9,000 legal management professionals worldwide and the regional conferences provide education and networking opportunities to ALA members and non-members each fall. Aly also serves as Chair of the Law Office Management Assistance Program (LOMAP) Advisory Committee of the State Bar of Wisconsin and on the Board of Directors of the Dane County Bar Association.

Aly is the founder of Next Step Legal Consulting LLC, which provides tailored business strategy advice and implementation for law firms that lack those resources in-house. Areas of specialization include strategic planning, marketing and business development coaching, financial budgeting and data analysis, recruiting, process improvement, project management, and technology procurement. Aly founded Next Step to help lawyers manage their businesses so they can spend more time practicing law, mentoring, bringing in business, and pursuing personal interests.

Aly received her B.A. in Economics from University of Wisconsin-Madison, J.D. from Marquette University, and M.P.S. in Law Firm Management from George Washington University. She also has a Yellow Belt in Legal Lean Sigma®.

Despite the diversity of job titles, volunteer positions, and areas of continuing education throughout her career, the core of Aly’s work has focused on one thing – helping lawyers better serve their clients.

Aly lives in Wisconsin with her litigator husband and two spoiled, but sweet dogs and is an avid Green Bay Packers and Wisconsin Badgers fan. She volunteers with and serves on the Board of Directors for the Western Wisconsin chapter of JDRF, which provides funding to type 1 diabetes research and education.

Jerry Rosenthal

Jerry Rosenthal

Strategic Advisor

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Jerry started on his Process Improvement journey when he entered the world of medical device manufacturing and packaging in 1996 as an Engineer and Production Supervisor. Although not yet formally trained in the tools of Lean and Six Sigma, he was successful in reducing waste and variation and implementing standard work (all things that are critical success factors in the world of manufacturing). The teams he led improved throughput and yields by using traditional methodologies and tools (e.g. – Plan – Do – Check – Act).

Jerry formally earned his Lean Six Sigma Certifications (Green, Black and Master Black Belts) while working in the Pharma space over the next several years. Since then, Jerry has served multiple organizations as an employee, an Independent Contractor and Consultant and now serves as the Director of Business Improvement for US Pharma Commercial Operations for GSK. Jerry is a published author and speaker and serves as a strategic advisor for several organizations.

Since the beginning of 2012, Jerry has applied Operational Excellence Principles (Strategy Deployment, Process Excellence, Performance Management and High Performance Work Teams) to the practice of law, primarily for organizations with in-house counsel. Jerry earned a BSME from Purdue University and an MBA from Loyola University Chicago.

Jerry grew up in Buffalo, New York. Now he and his wife make their home in Philadelphia.

Gabe Teninbaum, JD

Gabe Teninbaum, JD

Director, Institute on Law Practice Technology & Innovation, Director, Legal Technology & Innovation Concentration, Suffolk University Law School. Visiting Professor, MIT, Media Lab/Human Dynamics Group, Visiting Fellow, Yale Law School, Information Society Project

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Professor Gabe Teninbaum is a full-time faculty member at Suffolk University Law School, where he serves as Director of the Institute on Law Practice Technology and Innovation. He also directs Suffolk Law’s academic concentration (akin to an undergraduate major) in legal technology/innovation.

Gabe began his legal career by attending law school at night while serving in the U.S. Secret Service. After graduating from Suffolk Law in 2005, he worked as a trial attorney at a Boston firm before joining the full-time faculty at Suffolk University Law School in 2007. Since then, he has taught 9 different courses – largely in the areas of legal tech/innovation and legal analysis/writing – and has more than 20 law review articles and other publications to his name.  He is also the founder & CEO of an educational technology company, SpacedRepetition.com, which uses artificial intelligence to help law students learn more efficiently and effectively.

He has been named to the FastCase 50, which “honors the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries, & leaders.” During the 2016-17 academic year, Gabe was appointed a Visiting Fellow at the Information Society Project at Yale Law School.

Gabe lives in Arlington, Mass., with his wife and two children.  When he’s not chasing them around, he enjoys gardening (especially growing fig trees), traveling (especially to Martha’s Vineyard), and watching football (especially the New England Patriots).

Kimberly Bell

Kimberly Bell

Strategic Advisor

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Kimberly is ‎Head of Legal Operations – ‎Nissan Motor Corporation. Prior to that role, she as Senior Vice President with Latitude Legal. She has more than 20 years of experience providing data-driven, strategic and operational solutions to Fortune 500 law departments and global law firms. She served in senior management positions in AmLaw 100 law firms, as a consultant to law departments, and as managing director of a nationally-recognized 80-attorney litigation department.

Her career has been devoted to improving client service and financial performance in the legal industry. Kimberly has developed and implemented business strategy and process improvements, managed the successful integration of legal teams, and applied market data and performance metrics to set billing rates, negotiate alternative fee arrangements, optimize staffing levels, and increase client value.

Kimberly serves in leadership roles in civic and professional organizations including as current board member of the Friends of Radnor Lake, as past Treasurer of the international board of the Legal Marketing Association (LMA), and as past President of the Washington, D.C. Chapter of the LMA. She and her husband, Joe, are regular volunteers at the therapeutic horse riding center Saddle Up, and they live in Nashville with their two dogs.

Chrisie Brockman

Chrisie Brockman

Consultant

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Chrisie Brockman is a Legal Lean Sigma Black Belt and has 23 years of hands-on experience in the legal industry, most recently as an Administrative Director and Program Champion of Legal Lean Sigma in an AmLaw 100 law firm. Chrisie is a change-maker, and highly skilled in identifying and enacting practical solutions to complicated, multi-faceted issues. She has a list of significant accomplishments in billing-related issues and practice support initiatives increasing efficiency and productivity of business operations for law firms. One of many successful projects includes personally discovering and ultimately resolving a multi-million dollar accounts receivable issue. Chrisie led a team in a revolutionary process re-engineering initiative, which ultimately returned millions of dollars to the firm. She is a leader who makes you feel comfortable, takes a common sense approach, and possesses a rare blend of business mindedness, strategic understanding, problem-solving, subject-matter expertise, and end-user focus.

In addition, Chrisie’s law firm operational experience includes oversight of various departments and teams and she was responsible for multiple systems, processes and services critical to the firm’s and attorneys’ success. Example areas of responsibility are Conflicts, New Business Intake, Docketing, Records Management, Ethical Walls, Litigation Experience Collection, Strategic Reporting, Practice Group support, and Staff Training. Chrisie is someone who “gets it” and is tuned in to the voice of the customer, whether that customer is a lawyer, administrative manager, staff, or the client.

James Michalowicz

James Michalowicz

Strategic Advisor

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Jim, a certified Six Sigma Black Belt. is an expert at improving the operations and delivery of legal services within law departments and their outside counsel programs. im is Senior Manager – Legal Operations Business Performance at TE. In this newly created role, Jim oversees the Law Department’s TE Operating Advantage (TEOA) program as part of the overall enterprise-wide corporate program for continuous process improvement. Jim works with the department on analyzing all aspects of legal service delivery, and identifying opportunities for efficiency and cost improvement that drive business performance to the next level.

In addition to TEOA, Jim champions the Law Department’s Extraordinary Customer Experience (ECE) initiatives in the areas of innovation, quality, delivery and on-going service and support. He also serves as the Law Department’s e-Discovery program manager, identifying and implementing tools and processes to enhance TE’s e-discovery capabilities, and driving efficiencies in responding to litigation, investigative, and regulatory requests.

Previously he served as a Managing Director at Huron Consulting Group. He was also an Adjunct Consultant with the legal consulting firm Altman Weil, Inc. and an Alliance Partner with The Counsel Management Group, LLC. Before starting the Michalowicz Consulting firm, Jim was a Director with ACT Litigation Services/DiscoverReady for five years. He also spent time at Tyco International Inc. as the Litigation Program Manager. For over a decade he worked at E.I. DuPont de Nemours and Company as the Business Manager of its Legal Department, as well as the Manager of Legal Services where he was an integral part of the team implementing the highly regarded DuPont Legal Model.

Jim’s engagement experiences include:

  • Counseling clients on creative solutions for managing electronic discovery and minimizing discovery risk and cost by building effective data management lifecycle programs.
  • Coordinating law firm and supplier convergence programs, early case assessments, value based fee arrangements, eDiscovery management and performance metrics. Jim has developed “Litametrics™”, the use of analytics in litigation management. “Litametrics” is an extension of Jim’s creativity in building performance metrics, early case assessment protocols and value based fee models in his prior roles as Legal Services Manager and Litigation Program Manager working at DuPont and Tyco.

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