General Counsel



Posted on Tuesday, June 11, 2024

About the Role

As RISC Zero's General Counsel, you'll serve as the legal pillar of our organization. Your reach spans decentralization, corporate matters, compliance, regulatory strategy, privacy, and employment issues, amongst other key areas. You will drive legal strategy and report to our SVP of Operations while working closely with our CEO and the rest of the executive team. You'll not just steer us through the legal labyrinth, but also lead internal education initiatives, ensuring everyone understands the "why" behind our legal decisions. We prefer you to be based out of Seattle, but we are open to remote in the US for the right candidate.

Key Responsibilities

  • Legal Advisory:

    • Serve as the primary legal advisor to RISC Zero, enabling strategic and ethical decision-making.

    • Provide legal guidance across all facets of the business, including corporate, IP, compliance, tokenization, privacy, and employment matters.

    • Monitor and interpret global regulatory developments in the blockchain and privacy spaces, advising the executive team on potential impacts and strategic responses.

  • Decentralization:

    • Lead the legal strategy around possible tokenization, ensuring compliance with relevant laws and regulations.

    • Establish and maintain the legal framework for a possible foundation, ensuring its governance structures align with best practices and regulatory requirements.

    • Develop and implement legal strategies to facilitate the transition to a decentralized ecosystem.

  • Corporate and Other Matters:

    • Support all corporate matters, including commercial agreements, customer/vendor contracts, NDAs etc.

    • Support people operations with various employment matters.

    • Provide expertise on intellectual property and licensing matters, particularly regarding open-source technologies.

Top Initiatives You’ll Own (over the first 3-6 months)

  • Drive legal decentralization planning, including tokenization and foundation strategy.

  • Lead legal support for our Series B fundraise.

  • Take over the majority of corporate matters from outside counsel.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Professional Experience:

    • 8-10+ years of post-JD legal experience, including at least 2 years in-house as a GC or legal leader within the web3 industry.

    • Proven track record of providing legal guidance across various business areas such as decentralization & tokenization, zero-knowledge proof applications, privacy, corporate law, intellectual property, compliance, and employment matters.

  • Expertise in Decentralization, Privacy and Blockchain Technologies:

    • Deep understanding of decentralization, tokenization, and blockchain technologies, with experience developing and implementing legal strategies to support a decentralized ecosystem.

    • Familiarity with global regulatory frameworks affecting the blockchain and privacy sectors, especially in the US.

  • Corporate Legal Management:

    • Extensive experience managing corporate legal matters, including commercial agreements, people operations support, fundraising, customer/vendor contracts, and non-disclosure agreements (NDAs).

  • Regulatory Preparedness and Compliance:

    • Ability to proactively research and stay updated on emerging legal frameworks and risks within web3 and privacy.

    • Experience in assessing and managing regulatory requirements on a global scale.

    • Proven ability to obtain necessary licenses and advocate for policy changes.

  • Intellectual Property Management:

    • Expertise in intellectual property law, particularly in the context of open source.

    • Ability to develop and execute intellectual property strategies, considering benefits and drawbacks.

  • Communication and Leadership:

    • Excellent communication skills, with the ability to convey complex legal concepts clearly and effectively.

    • Strong leadership and interpersonal skills, with a collaborative approach to working with cross-functional teams.

  • Strategic and Ethical Decision-Making:

    • Demonstrated ability to facilitate strategic and ethical decision-making at the executive level.

    • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills, focusing on a bias toward action where decisions need to be made with incomplete information.

  • Self-Starter and Independent Contributor:

    • Highly self-motivated and proactive — able to work independently as an individual contributor to start.

    • Capable of managing a broad range of legal matters with minimal supervision while also leveraging support from outside counsel when necessary.

  • Government Relations:

    • Strong skills in building and maintaining relationships with governmental bodies and stakeholders.

    • Ability to stay informed on policy changes and potential regulatory shifts, providing timely advice to the team.

  • Educational and Training Skills:

    • Experience in developing and conducting internal learning sessions to enhance the team’s understanding of the legal landscape and decision-making processes.

Ideal Candidate Qualities

  • 🔒 Authenticity: Demonstrates ethical leadership, honesty, and transparency in all interactions.

  • 💖 Empathy: Shows understanding and concern for the well-being of team members, demonstrating a humane orientation to leadership.

  • 🌟 Resilience: Demonstrates positivity and resilience in the face of challenges, providing inspiration and motivation to the team.

  • 🌱 Growth Mindset: Encourages continuous learning and personal development within the team, focusing on the human dynamic and the unique needs and strengths of all stakeholders.

  • 🎯 Strategic Thinking: Exhibits the ability to think strategically and act decisively, balancing immediate needs with long-term goals.

  • 🌍 Inclusive Leadership: Champions diversity and inclusion, promoting equitable opportunities and treatment for all team members.

  • 🤝 Collaborative: Excels at breaking down silos and creating a "one team, one roadmap" culture. Has a strong ability to facilitate productive relationships across teams.

  • 👷🏾‍♀️ Builder: You’re a Creator and a Doer, you get the vision, create the strategy, and take ownership of building it

What We Offer

  • Salary: Competitive range of $253,000 - $330,000 USD

  • Professional Development: Access to leadership coaching and numerous learning opportunities.

  • Work Flexibility: Remote work with up to 20% travel for team meetings and events, plus a Seattle co-working space.

  • Health Insurance: Comprehensive coverage with United Health Care Choice Plus (US employee), including significant premium contributions. Gold-level insurance for international employees via Deel.

  • Retirement Plan: 401k to support your future or statutory plans in your given country.

  • Equity: Generous company equity via Profit Incentive Units (PIUs), vesting monthly.

  • Vacation: Unlimited PTO, with 3-5 weeks standard.

  • Holidays: 11 paid holidays for rest and rejuvenation.

  • Culture: A supportive, collaborative, and inclusive work environment.

About Us

We're on a mission to transform the internet for the better. Our team of innovative hackers, visionary futurists, and passionate nerds is devoted to creating a digital space that's safe, inclusive, and empowers everyone. By developing the world's first zero-knowledge virtual machine, we've laid the groundwork for running arbitrary code as a zero-knowledge proof. Utilizing a ZK Coprocessor to assist or enhance the compute of an on-chain application, we have created a unique package - the RISC Zero ZK Coprocessor, comprised of the zkVM, Bonsai, and ETH Relay. Now, we're ambitiously constructing an entire ecosystem around this groundbreaking technology.