LegalcommunityMENA had the opportunity to interview Mogy regarding how his new role aims to serve the in-house legal community in the region.
Mogy, what inspired you to take on the role of Board Director for the ACC Middle East and North Africa Chapter?
As you may know, ACC is a global legal association that promotes the common professional and business interests of in-house counsel who work for corporations, associations, and other organizations through information, education, networking, and advocacy. And whereas the promise I made to myself and to the in-house community was to take this community to the next level by enhancing and improving the skills and qualities of the in-house legal counsel from one side, and to build solid landskip for the community where they can share knowledge, network and exchange legal updates. Therefore, being an ACC Board Director have made the right match between my personal aspiration and the ACC mission.
What are some of your priorities as Board Director, and how do you plan to achieve them?
There are generic priorities and more specific ones. The fundamental priority for any ACC Board Director would be to set standards for education, accreditation, and benchmarking; elevating the practice of in-house law and the unique role of the in-house legal function. Nevertheless, anticipating and understanding the needs of the in-house legal counsel, helping ACC members deliver services to their corporate clients efficiently and promote the value of in-house services, influencing the practice of law generally, and delivering a mix of relevant, timely services, including information, education, networking, and advocacy to the in-house community.
How do you plan to support and advocate for in-house counsel in the region?
ACC’s primary responsibility is to members. I plan to continually strive to develop resources and programs that respond to and anticipate in-house counsel’s needs. To ensure the fulfillment of this commitment, I am planning to co-lead with other board directors the MENA Chapter to achieve the following core operating values:
- Represent in-house lawyers as full and equal members of the legal profession,
- Foster excellence among in-house practitioners, helping them represent their clients effectively and deliver services efficiently,
- Advance the highest ethical standards governing the practice of law in a corporate setting,
- Promote diversity and inclusiveness within the in-house communities in the Middle East,
- Encourage public and pro bono service; and
- Foster a sense of collegiality to facilitate networking and interaction among in-house counsel and foster professionalism, openness, and candour among in-house counsel.
How do you plan to promote diversity and inclusion within the legal profession in the region?
For years, the legal world has shied away from diversity, falling behind the inclusion rates of other professions. As leaders in the legal field, we can take advantage of the untapped potential in the room and drive change from top to bottom as it is now known to everyone that a well-managed diverse legal department is likely to perform better in this changing environment because a diverse workforce enables the organization to offer a wider range of resources, skills, ideas and energy to the business, providing a competitive edge and seizing the benefits of resourcing from a wider pool of talent.
Accordingly, and besides my personal pledge not only to live the Diversity & Inclusion in all aspects of what I am doing, but also to promote them as much as I can. Being an ACC board director will surely encourage me to plan events and conferences dedicated only for D&I, debate and discuss the challenges that other colleagues are facing in this; and from the other hand promote ACC’s wonderful I.D.E.A.L. training program which is a collection of carefully curated resources on race, equity, social justice, diversity, and inclusion. The goal is to educate the legal community about the inequities that plague the legal profession, provide opportunities to discuss these inequities, and equip in-housel lawyers with solutions that will enable them to act and lead for change. Generally, to give members an understanding of the importance of diversity and how to create a well-managed diverse legal team to bring more innovation and increased performance and creative problem-solving derived from a greater blend of perspectives and opinions.
What unique skills and perspectives do you bring to the role of Board Director for ACC Middle East and North Africa Chapter?
Passion, aspiration, challenging the status Quo and willingness to improve the community. Being not different than any other colleague, anyone takes the ACC Board Director role should have great passion and dedication to the in-house community and be ready to face challenges and overcome obstacles down the road. As bilingual lawyer in Arabic speaking region, I am also thinking of the thousands of Arabic speaking in-house lawyers who deserve to be part of this and gain the fruits of long-standing robust programs that ACC provides. Lastly, the ability to network, influence and collaborate with others are skills that well-needed for such role.
In your opinion, what are the most pressing issues facing in-house counsel in the Middle East and North Africa region currently?
The In-house community in the middle East is quite underestimated and deserves more attention, more services and definitely more collaboration amongst its members. In-house counsel are working in silos and generally do not interact with the rest of the legal community members or other in-house lawyers as being focused on their businesses and the internal stakeholders; however, networking and exchanging knowledge among the in-house community is one challenge that requires more attention from us as ACC board directors. Although the legal function is quite respected within companies, it is still not the money generating function that businesses look at from that angle; as I always say: the most important employee in a law firm is the lawyer; however, the in-house lawyer is likely not the most important employee in companies. Accordingly, in-house lawyers should change their mindset and understand this fact, then try to live with it and/or change it to come up with solutions that generate money into their companies and hence get valued as they deserve.
About Mohamed Elmogy
A proud father of two great young adults, potential physicist and potential lawyer, and the husband to a solid supportive wife who’s been behind all his success. Mogy is proud to come from a family that is well-rooted in the legal field in the region with great legacy in the law society.
He is a ultiple legal awards winner, International Legal Counsel, and bilingual business leader currently the Regional Lead Counsel at Siemens Energy. With outstanding track-record of 27 years of hands-on legal experience across the Middle East & Africa (“MEA”) Region with F500 Corporations including Siemens Energy, Siemens, PepsiCo Inc., Snadoz and Vodafone. Mogy has led a number of initiatives that made huge impact on the In-house Legal Communities in the Middle East by founding the platforms for in-house legal counsel in both UAE and Egypt. He is fluent in Arabic and English languages and has a good knowledge of French and Italian.
He successfully obtained a Ph.D. in International Commercial Arbitration at the American Arab Academy in partnership with Texas University in the US and his master’s degree in Law MSC in International Legal & Commercial Transactions and Logistics at the Arab Maritime Academy for Science and Technology.