About the General Counsel

Mission statement

The Office of the General Counsel provides the University with leadership on legal matters and works collaboratively with University clients and campus colleagues to achieve the University’s mission by providing trusted legal advice and guidance, and vigorous advocacy.


We are legal leaders, dedicated to offering counsel that is innovative and creative, yet practical and achievable in accord with the best practices of the finest public research universities.


We are firmly committed to providing excellent legal services to support the University in its mission, and dedicated to enriching the University’s culture and environment of integrity, service, diversity, and inclusion.

Organizational Chart

Download our Organizational Chart (PPT) for an overview of our departmental structure.

Text-based Org Chart Structure 

Gerry Leone, General Counsel

  • Denise Barton, Chief Deputy General Counsel
  • Brian Burke, Amherst Deputy General Counsel
  • John Chayrigues, Senior Counsel
  • Chanda Wolf, Special Assistant


  • Brian Burke, Amherst Deputy General Counsel
  • Debora Ferreira, Associate Counsel
  • Allison Lepper, Amherst Chief Associate Counsel 
  • Timothy Rucki, Assistant Counsel
  • Laura Shea, Legal Administrative Specialist


  • Philip Brown, Associate Counsel
  • Denise Lindberg, Legal Administrative Specialist
  • Ethan Mutschler, Associate Counsel

Intellectual Property

  • Denise Lindberg, Legal Administrative Specialist
  • Josh Stockwell, Associate Counsel

General Higher Education Issues

  • John Chayrigues, Senior Counsel
  • Alyssa Cherubino, Assistant Counsel
  • Ryan Ferch, Associate Counsel
  • Karen Laisne, Associate Counsel
  • Dawna McIntyre, Associate Counsel
  • Maria Sheehy, Associate Counsel
  • Megan Trachman, Associate Counsel


  • Michael Hoven, Associate Counsel
  • Mark Johnson, Associate Counsel
  • Cheryl Marinelli, Legal Administrative Specialist

International Affairs, Ethics and Compliance 

  • Andrew Karberg, Associate Counsel and OGC Director 
  • Tejal Patel, Associate Counsel
  • Sara Rufli, Legal Administrative Specialist

Public Records 

  • Chip Flaherty, Associate Counsel and Director