The global law firm of Winston & Strawn LLP on Aug. 6 announced the launch of a new environmental, social and governance (ESG) advisory team, co-chaired by Houston-based partners Mike Blankenship and Eric Johnson.

The ESG advisory team synthesizes the firm's multidisciplinary experience to help boards and management teams oversee the complete spectrum of ESG-related legal and business issues, according to a release from the firm.

"Amid an ever-changing business environment, it's clear that the most resilient and successful businesses are placing ESG principles at the forefront of their core values and leveraging those principles to chart a path for financial success and future growth to the benefit of all their stakeholders, including employees, customers, vendors, local communities, and stockholders," said Blankenship.

In addition to Blankenship and Johnson, the cross-functional team includes Chicago partners Mike Melbinger, Eleni Kouimelis, Cardelle Spangler, and Rex Sessions, of counsel Stephanie Sebor; New York partner Tara Greenberg, London partners Peter Crowther and Anthony Riley. Drawing from deep experience and building on existing client work, the team will focus on matters relating to:

  • ESG disclosures and messaging, including program implementation and framework selection;
  • Board oversight of ESG risks and establishment of related corporate principles and values;
  • Corporate governance;
  • Shareholder activism;
  • Regulatory compliance;
  • Energy transition and renewable and alternative energy sources;
  • Employee benefits and executive compensation, including incentivizing ESG-related behaviors;
  • Labor and employment; and
  • Crisis management.

"Embracing ESG principles and implementing ESG-related programs is a unique process for every organization, tied directly to each organization's distinct cultural and brand identity," said Johnson. "Our team works closely with clients to develop and execute ESG-related initiatives that best fit their specific needs to the benefit of all of their stakeholders."

Winston & Strawn is an international law firm with 15 offices located throughout North America, Asia and Europe.