This is the shoe we’ve been waiting to hear drop since last year when longtime NBC General Counsel Rick Cotton said that he’ll focus on anti-piracy issues once a replacement was named. That happened today with the appointment of Kimberley Harris to be NBCUniversal‘s EVP and General Counsel beginning September 3. She’ll report to NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke coordinating the company’s global regulatory and legislative agenda while overseeing the Law Department which guides the company’s film studio, two broadcast networks, 18 cable channels, 50-plus digital sites, and theme park operations. A magna cum laude Harvard grad with a law degree from Yale, Harris moves to the company from Davis Polk & Wardwell — but may be best known for her work from 2010 to 2012 in the White House Counsel’s Office where she helped to manage the Obama administration’s responses to congressional investigations and litigation. Prior to that she worked on white collar crime issues at the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. Cotton joined NBC in 1989 and became general counsel for NBCUniversal in 2004. He’ll now become Senior Counselor for IP Protection working with colleagues at the entertainment operation as well as parent company Comcast. “Rick Cotton’s many contributions have earned him the gratitude of this company, and the respect of our industry,” Burke says. “I am pleased that Rick will continue to lead our efforts regarding digital theft and counterfeiting, and that he will help ensure a smooth transition.”
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