Catherine Flickinger, J.D. General Counsel Office: General Counsel Campus: Old Westbury
Member of NYIT Since: 2011
For NYIT's General Counsel Catherine Flickinger, practicing law in an educational environment is a career move decades in the making.
"Getting a legal job at a university has been an interest of mine for a long time," she says. "I was inspired by the vision of NYIT and its focus on career-oriented education, particularly now that there's so much controversy about the value of education."
Flickinger's career path has included high-profile legal positions at media companies such as CBS, Inc. and more than 20 years at magazine publisher Hachette Filipacchi Media, where she led the legal and human resources departments. At Hachette, she negotiated a joint venture between the company and the late John F. Kennedy Jr. to publish George magazine, the former politics and celebrity publication, for which she provided legal counsel during its six-year run.
She says NYIT's goals are similar to those of media companies. They include developing and protecting intellectual property such as research and efficiently structuring global operations.
In addition, as the parent of two sons – one in law school and the other graduated from college and working – she has gained a wider perspective of educational operations.
"I've been through many of the issues that people face here," Flickinger says.
It has been her attention to detail, as well as her openness and ability to listen to the concerns of others, that have enabled Flickinger to succeed.
"Often the question that people present is not the issue," says Flickinger, whose plans include sharing with the NYIT community how the general counsel's office can help them. "It's only by listening that you find out the real question."
In 2004, Flickinger was named one of the 40 Outstanding Women of the Bar by the New York County Lawyers' Association. This honor also gave her a close-up of someone she calls a role model, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who spoke about being a woman lawyer at the ceremony.
Overall, Flickinger is looking forward to new experiences at NYIT. "In law, every situation is different, even every contract," she says. "You have to understand new ventures, no matter the department."