Google’s legal head moves to Ironclad

legal tech
Mary Shen O’Carroll

Google’s director of legal operations, Mary Shen O’Carroll, has departed after 13 years with the technology giant to become the first chief community officer at digital contracting company Ironclad.

In her new role, O’Carroll told Asia Business Law Journal that her overarching strategic plan is to build a community of professionals establishing a new standard of business for their companies through digital contracting.

“The potential for technology to redefine the business of law is limitless, and we’ve only scratched the surface of what we can do,” said O’Carroll.

“The next big opportunity in legal tech, and in business tech generally, is contracting. Ask any contracting professional, and you’ll hear that the current way of contracting is not optimal, and that changing that is not a nice-to-have, but a mission-critical in modern business.”

O’Carroll said her vision was to turn contracting from siloed, messy and expensive processes into sources of operational intelligence for the entire business, and to elevate all the professionals working with contracts.

With her new role, O’Carroll will step down as the president of the Corporate Legal Operations Consortium (CLOC), which she has held since January 2019. As CLOC only allows in-house legal ops professionals to be on its board, O’Carroll has handed over to Mike Haven, the head of legal operations and associate general counsel of Intel. The new arrangement will be effective from 1 May 2021, and O’Carroll will remain a CLOC member.

San Francisco-based Ironclad offers a contract lifecycle management platform. In January, the company raised US$100 million in its series D fundraising round before acquiring legal tech company PactSafe, a contract acceptance platform for high-velocity businesses, in March.