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North America Chief Information Officer

Chicago, IL, US San Diego, CA, US Dallas, TX, US Washington DC, DC, US Phoenix, AZ, US Atlanta, GA, US Los Angeles, CA, US

Mar 4, 2023

Dentons US LLP is currently recruiting for a North America Chief Information Officer (“CIO”). This is the highest Information Technology leadership role for Dentons in North America (Dentons US “DUS” and Dentons Canada). The North America CIO has ownership of the establishment and execution of the Firm’s technology strategy, ensuring its close integration and alignment with the Firm’s business strategy, together with the delivery of all information and technology capabilities required to achieve business capability performance success. The North America CIO leads the team’s approach and execution of new and innovative ways to employ technology to both enhance and protect the Firm’s business operations.


As a member of the DUS executive leadership team, the North America CIO participates in and contributes to overall enterprise business model, operating model and business strategy development. The North America CIO brings a current knowledge and future vision for leveraging information and technology in business model design, business capability performance re-engineering, innovative product and service development, and support for developing competitive advantage. The North America CIO also holds primary responsibility for cyber security and related activities.


The ideal candidate must have the ability to develop and nurture a “data first” culture that enables the Firm to leverage data to continuously improve Firm operations and the  understanding of its business. By improving data literacy throughout the organization, the North America CIO must leverage the intersection of business strategy and data science.


Dentons is a matrixed organization, so the North America CIO must be able to develop relationships across all levels of leadership and various stakeholders at the Firm. Relationship building is a critical component to the success of this role.


Primary Responsibilities:

  • In support of the Firm’s strategic plan and business objectives, determines the operating model for information and technology to foster business-oriented and digital-ready culture, mindsets and practices.
  • Contributes actively to enterprise strategy and business capability strategic planning. Leads the development of information technology and management plans and product/service roadmaps. Ensures integration with the Firm’s strategic planning process, and the resulting business strategy and plans.
  • Establishes active relationships with practice group chairs, managing partners and members of the leadership team across North America. Acts as a trusted advisor to ensure all executive leaders can, with the CIO, make confident decisions about the application of information and technology within their units and across the Firm.
  • Ensures information technology and management capabilities are delivered reliably, cost effectively and securely. Ensures the team’s contributions are delivered with agility based on changing Firm objectives, goals and strategies.
  • Oversee and reports on all activities associated with cyber security and risk. Supports the ongoing advancements in technologies to alert and respond to the evolving cyber threat landscape.
  • Directs the design and implementation of the information technology and management operating model, organizational structure, and governance process. Uses influencing and negotiation skills to create synergies across the Firm to establish cost-effective and innovative shared solutions to achieve business goals.
  • Collaborates with executive leadership and partners to define and execute the digital business strategy. Participates in and contributes to the assessment of external digital opportunities and threats, and internal technology capabilities required to achieve desired competitive positioning.
  • Maintains currency on new technologies and platforms. Provides direction on what emerging technologies should be integrated and introduced within the enterprise to ensure capabilities respond to the needs of the Firm’s business strategy. Provides strategic direction in the Firm’s innovation efforts to take advantage of these opportunities.
  • Provides strategic direction and oversight for the design, development, operation and support of information technology systems and programs that fulfill the needs of the business, including enterprise architecture management, application management, security and risk management, and infrastructure and operations support management.
  • Develops and controls annual operating and capital expense budgets and associated services to ensure the investment in technologies is consistent with the Firm’s overall strategic objectives and is within plan.
  • Enhances  capabilities by leveraging a multitude of resources, both internally and externally. Directs the development of the technology sourcing strategy and provides executive oversight for strategic vendor and partner relationship management.
  • Engages and works with Human Resources and key stakeholders to map out scenarios for workforce transformations. Develops the workforce strategy and action plans that align with and enable the execution of the business and its technology strategies.
  • Develops and maintains a workforce with the appropriate mix of business knowledge, technical skills and competencies. Balances the need for growing the agility required to achieve digital business objectives, with ensuring the core technology functions are reliable, stable and efficient.
  • Leads the establishment and execution of a digital workplace strategy that enables the development of digital dexterity in the workforce. Ensures employees have the tools and work environment to be more engaged, productive and effective.
  • Participates and partners with the Firmwide operations leadership team to drive culture change in support of business transformation.
  • Drives the development of enterprise technology standards, governance processes and performance metrics to ensure the information technology function delivers value to the Firm, while managing risks through the effective design and delivery of information technology capabilities.
  • Provides leadership, coaching and direction to the information technology leadership team and staff.
  • Other duties as required to fully meet the needs of the position.


Experience & Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in computer science, management information systems, IT management, preferred.
  • 15+ years’ of experience in information technology.
  • Seven to ten years of leadership responsibilities.
  • Preferably five or more years of experience in the legal industry or more generally the professional service sector leading large cross-functional teams, enterprise wide programs, influencing senior-level management and key stakeholders effectively across highly matrixed organizations.
  • Demonstrated experience in strategy and strategic planning, organization design and development.
  • Proven experience in leading large, complex and/or complex digital or other transformational initiatives in dynamic environments.
  • Exceptional leadership skills with the ability to develop and communicate vision that inspires and motivates staff.
  • Ability to effectively communicate and instill confidence with peers and  key stakeholders.
  • Effective influencing and negotiation skills in an environment where resources may not be in direct control of this role.
  • Excellent analytical, strategic conceptual thinking, strategic planning and execution skills.
  • Strong business acumen including legal industry knowledge of the enterprise and its business units.
  • Expertise in budget planning and financial management.
  • Deep understanding of current and emerging technologies and how other enterprises are employing them to drive digital business and how they may be applied to the enterprise to drive business.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and execute a strategic people plan that ensures the right people are in the right roles at the right time and that employees are highly engaged and satisfied.
  • Ability to manage geographically diverse teams and overcome cultural issues that may arise.
  • Ability to identify and leverage resources internally and externally to the enterprise to enhance capabilities that drive business.
  • Ability to drive organizational change and build capabilities that effectively balance the needs for continuously exploiting capabilities to optimize operational efficiency.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to explain digital concepts and technologies to business leaders and business concepts to the information technology workforce.
  • Ability to set clear and challenging goals while committing the organization to improve performance.
  • Comfortable with ambiguity and uncertainty and the ability to adapt and lead others through complex situations.
  • A leader who is viewed by others as having a high degree of integrity and forethought in approaching decisions and the ability to act in a transparent and consistent manner while always taking into account what is best for the organization.
  • Ability to attract and recruit top talent, motivate the team, delegate effectively, celebrate diversity within the team, and manage performance.
  • Ability to persevere in the face of challenges, finding alternative ways of achieving goals.
  • Steadfast resolve and commitment to higher standards; continuous improvement.
  • Leads by example and drives organizational performance by being open to feedback and self-improvement
  • Naturally connects and builds strong relationships with others, demonstrating strong emotional intelligence and an ability to communicate clearly and persuasively.
  • Ability to inspire trust in others through compelling influence, powerful charisma, passion in believes, and active drive.
  • Encourages others to share the spotlight, visibly celebrates and supports team successes.

Dentons offers a competitive salary and benefits package.


Dentons US LLP is an Equal Opportunity Employer of Individuals with Disabilities and Protected Veterans. We are an Affirmative Action Employer. Pursuant to local ordinances, we will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.


About Dentons

Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic.

Nearest Major Market: Chicago