Alcoa Names New Chief Legal, Compliance Officer

by The Compliance Exchange on April 12, 2012

From Wall Street Journal:

Alcoa Inc. said Wednesday it named Audrey Strauss as chief legal officer.

Strauss, a senior litigation partner at Fried Frank, will also hold the title of chief compliance officer and corporate secretary. Her appointment begins May 1, and she’ll be replacing Kurt Waldo, who retires Aug. 1 after 32 years at the Pittsburgh-based aluminum company.

Prior to her work at Fried Frank, Strauss served in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York as chief appellate attorney, and as chief of the fraud unit. She earned her law degree from Columbia Law School, and her bachelor’s from Barnard College.

A call to her office at Fried Frank was not immediately returned. Upon her start at Alcoa, though, Strauss will face a bevy of compliance challenges.

Alcoa is in the middle of an unusual civil-racketeering lawsuit with Bahrain’s state-owned Aluminum Bahrain BSC, known as Alba, which accuses it of paying millions of dollars in bribes through an agent to officials at Alba in exchange for inflated contracts. The company asked a judge at the end of March to toss the suit, arguing that all the alleged acts took place overseas and hence aren’t under the substantive jurisdiction of the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations law.

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