General Counsel

Job Description

Reporting directly to the President, the General Counsel will perform and manage all legal aspects of the company and provide strategic advice and support for operations and management.

Essential Functions
  • Mitigate risk to the organization by practicing preventive law, proactively informing and educating management. 
  • Manage policies and objectives involving local, state, and federal government affairs in coordination with internal subject matter experts. Lead analysis of proposed legislative and regulatory actions, determine the potential impact on the organization and develop responses, including creating policy proposals, providing public testimony and written comments. Coordinate regulatory and legislative efforts by working with government officials and stakeholders to represent and advocate for the company. 
  • Keep informed of new laws, regulations, and industry trends, and develop policies, programs, and training as needed, including environmental, health and safety, and labor and employment.
  • Manage the corporate governance of the company, e.g., drafting and reviewing meeting minutes, amendments to governance documents, and corporate policies.  
  • Provide leadership on cross-functional teams, identify legal concerns and participate in analyses for determining preferred resolutions. May include interacting with external counsel, advisors, vendors, and business partners.
  • Draft, review, negotiate, and interpret agreements in support of various company departments, e.g., finance, human resources, IT, engineering, maintenance.  Advise on contract status, legal risks and liabilities.
  • Respond promptly to requests from internal clients, and summarize and communicate legal risks so it pragmatically balances risk with the business objectives.
  • Coordinate and manage external law firms, ensuring timely and accurate work product and results.
  • Manage any liability claims, e.g., coordinate internal investigations and actively participate in the insurance claims process.  
  • Manage any litigation and/or regulatory enforcement in which company is involved, e.g., class action law suits, notices or findings of violation, employee litigation, and contract disputes.
  • Provide education and training to staff to insure awareness of legal issues and how to spot and/or avoid them. Subjects include ethics, privacy, political activity and procurement. 
  • Ensure compliance with regulatory filing requirements and operational activities, lobbying activities, etc. in coordination with staff subject matter experts.
  • Pursue opportunities to benefit the company by identifying and implementing improvements in processes, forms and operations.
  • Develop a thorough understanding of the company’s products, services and business model.
  • Coordinate various audit and review programs to promote process improvement, ensure compliance, and mitigate risk throughout the business.
  • 5+ years’ experience in legal practice, preferably with law firm and in-house experience. 
  • Significant experience providing strategic counseling to senior management on complex matters.
  • Demonstrated experience successfully driving legal strategies, goals and objectives including process improvements and resource efficiencies in legal services.
  • Excellent organizational and planning skills and the capacity to simultaneously handle a variety of complex matters under deadline pressure in a dynamic environment.
  • Strong demonstrated experience drafting and negotiating contracts.
  • Excellent written, verbal and analytical skills and an ability to communicate complex issues simply. 
  • Demonstrated ability to build strong working relationships to positively influence effective outcomes while maintaining adherence to proper legal standards.
  • Responsive and service-oriented attitude.
  • Attention to detail and the ability to work individually, within a multi-disciplinary team, and external partners and vendors. 
  • Some travel required (e.g., Sacramento, Fresno, Washington D.C., Long Beach). 
  • Bachelor's degree and Juris Doctor in Law from an accredited U.S. law school.
  • Active member in good standing in the State Bar of California.


To be considered, job application must be submitted along with resume.  Excellent pay and benefits.


Kern Oil & Refining Co.

7724 E. Panama Lane

Bakersfield, CA 93307

FAX (661) 845-3365