Jonathan S. Hoak is Of Counsel at Benesch and has been a general counsel of large companies for more than 20 years. He provides non-legal advice to clients on topics such as ethics and compliance programs, corporate governance trends and best practices, relationships with boards of directors and best practices for management of large legal departments. Jon draws on his rich experience with multiple Fortune 500 global companies to share practical, real world advice with Benesch’s clients.
Jon served as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Flex from January 2011 through June 2016. Flex is a leading Sketch-to-Scale solutions company that designs and builds intelligent products for a connected world. With more than 200,000 professionals across 30 countries, the company provides innovative design, engineering, manufacturing, real-time supply chain insight, and logistics services to companies of all sizes in various industries.
At Flex, Jon had global responsibility for providing legal support and directing legal department operations. He was personally actively engaged with executive management and the board of directors in establishing and running the Flex global ethics and compliance program and implementing corporate governance best practices. He also led the corporate security function and U.S. Government Affairs activities at Flex.
Previously, Jon was Vice President and Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer at Hewlett-Packard (HP), where from 2006 to 2011 he oversaw the strategy and implementation of HP’s ethics and compliance program, including adherence to HP’s standards of business conduct. Arriving at HP on the heels of an ethics and compliance crisis, Jon was recognized globally for his leadership in re-establishing HP as role model for other large companies in the important areas of sustainability, global citizenship and ethical cultures.
Jon also served from 1993 to 2006 as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for NCR Corporation, where he was responsible for furnishing legal counsel services and directing legal operations for all global divisions of the company. He also served as General Counsel of AT&T’s Federal Systems Division, where he led a group of attorneys to support AT&T’s provision of products and services to the United States Government. Prior to joining AT&T, Jon was a Partner of the law firm Sidley & Austin, LLP and also worked for Heritage Communications, a cable television provider.
Recently, Jon has co-founded UpLevel Ops, which is a consulting firm specializing in providing services for in-house legal departments and law firms. UpLevel Ops provides a complete range of Legal Operations support, including IT solutions, Finance and Budget guidance, Talent Management and Development, Benchmarking, Best Practices and Metrics, and Outside Counsel Selection and Management.
Jon holds a juris doctorate degree from Drake University, and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder, where he majored in Psychology, History, and Political Science.