Paula Maggio, former executive vice president, general counsel and secretary at Retail Properties of America, Inc. (NYSE: RPAI) and Strategic Hotels & Resorts, Inc., participated in a video interview at Nareit's REITwise: 2018 Law, Accounting & Finance Conference in Hollywood, Florida.
Maggio commented on the role of a REIT general counsel in contributing to the tone at the top.
“It’s important that they have a seat at the table and be recognized as someone who’s important on the management team,” Maggio said.
Ideally, a general counsel should also report directly to the CEO, according to Maggio. In addition, a general counsel should have an open relationship with the board of directors and needs to be viewed as independent, she said.
Maggio also stressed the need for open communication between the management board and the board of directors.