This article was provided by the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association.
Amalia Pinos was brought up in Montreal, Quebec, a vibrant melting pot of cultures, instilling in her a deep appreciation for diversity and community. The values of hard work and perseverance, inherited from her immigrant parents, serve as guiding principles in her professional endeavours. Her family, comprising strong and resilient women, taught her the power of standing up for what is right and the importance of using her voice to effect positive change — which led her to become a lawyer.
Developing her skills
Amalia Pinos began her legal career on a somewhat unconventional path within the legal landscape. She first articled at Cirque du Soleil in Montreal, where she gained invaluable insights into entertainment law and made her adaptable to change. Subsequent roles at Québecor and the National Bank of Canada further honed her expertise, laying the foundation for her current role as Senior Legal Counsel at TELUS Legal & Regulatory Affairs.
At TELUS Legal & Regulatory Affairs, Amalia's responsibilities extend far beyond conventional legal counsel duties. She navigates complex transactions, drafts agreements, and ensures compliance with diverse regulatory frameworks. As Chair of TELUS Legal & Regulatory Affairs' Knowledge Management Committee and Co-Chair of the Competition Law Committee, she also spearheads initiatives aimed at fostering collaboration and compliance within the organization.
“The convergence between the roles of in-house counsel and business is increasingly apparent in today's corporate environment,” Amalia explains. “As an in-house counsel, I have firsthand experience witnessing the growing expectation for legal professionals not only to provide legal advice, but also to actively contribute to strategic decision-making and overall business operations.”
To grow her business skills, she enrolled in the Business Leadership Program for In-House Counsel in 2023. This unique collaboration between the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association (CCCA) and the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management blends theoretical knowledge with practical application, equipping legal professionals like Amalia with essential skills in strategic thinking, business acumen and effective communication.
“This evolving overlap between in-house counsel and business roles presents exciting opportunities for legal professionals to significantly impact the organization's success,” she says. “Embracing this convergence and continually honing our skills allows us to contribute effectively to achieving business objectives while upholding the highest legal and ethical standards.”
Leading into the future
In the future, Amalia sees herself stepping into a leadership role within the legal department, driving strategic initiatives and contributing to organizational success. She continues to build her skillset to be ready.
“To ‘future-proof’ my career, I believe it is essential to embrace technological advancements, maintain a growth mindset, and remain adaptable to change,” she explains. “By anticipating challenges and aligning my professional development with the evolving landscape, I aim to foster a culture of innovation within the legal team. This involves embracing emerging technologies, exploring new ways of delivering legal services, and seeking out opportunities to collaborate with colleagues from different disciplines.”
Amidst her journey, Amalia cherishes timeless wisdom passed down by her grandparents — “Be humble and kind” and “Always speak your truth and stand up for what is right.” These words underscore her approach to leadership, reminding her of the importance of compassion, integrity, and a strong sense of purpose.
Are you interested in advancing your career in 10 months? Enroll in the CCCA’s Business Leadership Program for In-House Counsel, offered the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. The next cohort begins in September 2024, and we are currently accepting applications. Find out more at www.ccca-accje.org/leadership.