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Touro Law Center
225 Eastview Drive/Room 404
Central Islip, NY 11722
Telephone: (631) 761-7060
Fax: (631) 761-7069

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Monday – Thursday, 8:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Other hours by appointment
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Alumni of the Month Program

Each month, Touro Law Center’s Alumni and Development Office recognizes one outstanding alum for his or her contribution to the legal field, service to the law school, or other outstanding achievement. If you would like to nominate a fellow alum, please contact the Director of Alumni Relations at 631.761.7063 or via e-mail.

July 2009

Laura McCabe Brandt

Laura McCabe Brandt

Class of 1996
General Counsel, H&M

Touro Law Center's Office of Development, Alumni Relations and Communications is proud to announce that Laura McCabe Brandt ’96 has been selected for the month of July. Ms. Brandt was an evening student while attending law school and has participated as a guest speaker in conjunction with the Career Services Office. She participates in programs for students, works with a number of Touro Law Center students in her office and is a member of Touro Law Center’s Alumni Council. Her accomplished career is highlighted in the bio below. On behalf of the entire law school community, we extend our congratulations to Laura McCabe Brandt.

Laura McCabe Brandt
eneral Counsel, H&M
Laura McCabe Brandt is a 1996 graduate of Touro Law Center’s evening program. While attending Touro Law in the evenings, she worked in various administrative positions seeking legally relevant duties to parlay into an in-house position.
Upon graduation, Ms. Brandt went to work as a temporary Law Clerk for Swiss Re America Holding, Inc., the world’s largest reinsurance company, handling basic tasks such as research, corporate governance, trademark assignments and contract review. The position was meant to last for two months but the company extended her stay several times. Finally, when the company moved its offices from New York City to Armonk, NY, Ms. Brandt decided not to remain with the company. Not wishing to pursue working in a law firm, Ms. Brandt explored other job opportunities. In 1997, she accepted a position as a paralegal at Ranieri & Co. Inc., a venture capital firm, located in Uniondale, NY, with the understanding of the hiring partner that she would prove her worth as an attorney. Within a year, Ms. Brandt became the Associate General Counsel. During this time, she evaluated commercial transactions and drafted relevant agreements, such as acquisitions, dispositions and debt financing contracts. She also collaborated with firm executives to identify business needs and recommend successful strategies while also mitigating corporate exposure. As with any in-house department management, she also oversaw outside counsel handling litigation and issues regarding complex transactions. 
In 2000, Ms. Brandt looked for a new challenge and moved to Apple Core Hotels, Inc., a New York metropolitan-area hotel management organization, as its Associate General Counsel. In this role, Ms. Brandt served as a strategic advisor to the General Counsel, Chief Operating Officer and corporate principals for daily hotel operations. She also directed all aspects of reviewing, drafting and revising commercial transactions. She created and led the internal labor relations program; including interacting with union officials and associates to perform mediation, arbitration, and employee disciplinary actions. Ms. Brandt was selected as a member of the 2006 Hotel Association team which negotiated a hard-fought contract with the Hotel Motel Trades Council, Unite-Here, Local 6. In a more varied work environment than in her past experience, Ms. Brandt instituted corporate policies and procedures. In this vein, she designed and launched an in-house HR operation, which included comprehensive guidelines and business practices for hiring, termination, training and performance management. Ms. Brandt also worked with marketing executives in order to properly advise on the obligations, use and rights surrounding Internet operations such as blogs, promotions and the registration and protection of domain names. She further implemented controls and training modules to ensure compliance with strict OSHA and ADA regulations. Ms. Brandt also continued to oversee activities of outside counsel, manage corporate governance initiatives and obtain service mark registrations.
In the middle of 2007, Ms. Brandt was hired by H&M Hennes & Mauritz L.P. (“H&M”) as its US General Counsel and charged with assessing the legal needs of the company and thereafter creating a legal department. H&M is an international retailer with stores in over 34 countries. For the US, it has over 170 locations in 23 states. As business collaboration is important for any attorney with corporate clients, whether in-house or outside, Ms. Brandt has partnered with various internal business counterparts including HR, Finance, Real Estate, Marketing, Logistics, IT and others to undertake a practical approach to meeting the company’s needs from these various points of view. These relationships have allowed Ms. Brandt to work with her internal clients to set up policies and procedures to limit legal risks and ensure legal compliance, document the numerous relationships with landlords and vendors and work on labor issues as the company underwent an organizing drive the year prior to Ms. Brandt’s start with the company. In this role, Ms. Brandt works on contracts, basic to complex, including the negotiation of retail leases for both mall and street deals, participates and aides in strategy for negotiations with labor unions, facilitates resolutions of various legal issues as they arise, oversees the regulatory compliance function, collaborates on various sweepstakes promotions, advises on company policies and internal investigations and oversees outside counsel, among other tasks including compiling historical trending data for litigation costs, insurance claims and the like to better forecast the company’s needs for the future.
Ms. Brandt completed her undergraduate studies at Loyola University Chicago. She has also received community mediation training from the Education & Assistance Corp. of New York and family mediation training from the Center for Family & Divorce Mediation Corp. She is licensed to practice in the state of New York and is a member of the New York State Bar Association, American Corporate Counsel Association, NYC Retail and Chief Legal Officer Subgroups, National Retail Federation, General Counsel’s Forum & Employment Law Committee and the Alexander Hamilton Inn of Court.

Alumni of the Month