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James G. Potter

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Information about James G. Potter

Profile image of James G. Potter

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
Occupation(s):
Corporate Lawyer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Corn (Caramel)
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Los Cabos, Mexico
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
8/1/1957
Birth Location:
Muncie, Indiana

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
Occupation(s):
Corporate Lawyer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Corn (Caramel)
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Los Cabos, Mexico
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
8/1/1957
Birth Location:
Muncie
See how James G. Potter is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Corporate attorney James G. Potter was born August 1, 1957 in Muncie, Indiana. Orphaned with three brothers and a sister when his parents passed away, Potter was raised in Richmond, Indiana by librarian Maxine Embry. He attended Vaile Elementary School, Hibbard Junior High School and graduated from Richmond High School in 1975 as the top male student. Majoring in philosophy and behavioral science, Potter worked as a dialysis technician and graduated from the University of Chicago in 1978. In 1982, Potter graduated from Harvard Law School.

Potter worked for the firm of Keck, Mahin and Cate of Chicago in the corporate and securities area. His clients included Morgan, Lewis and Bockius of Philadelphia. From 1989 to 1997, Potter served as chief legal officer of Prudential Direct, a business unit of Prudential Insurance that included Prudential Bank and Trust Company. In this capacity, he provided direct support in the areas of banking, corporate, finance and securities law, and managed the law departments of the Prudential subsidiaries that make up the business unit. Potter served as executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of Provident Mutual Life Insurance Company, which comprises the fifth largest share of the variable life insurance market in the United States. At Provident, Potter managed the law, compliance, and corporate secretary departments. Joining Del Monte Foods Company in 2001, Potter was appointed general counsel and secretary for the food and pet products giant. He is now the company’s senior vice president and corporation counsel.

Concerned about diversity in the workplace, in 1999, Potter joined the legal counsels of 500 major U.S. corporations in signing a document entitled, “Diversity in the Workplace, A Call to Action”. He is a member of the American Bar Association, the Minority Corporation Counsels and the Coalition to Promote Minority Health. He is also chairman of the steering committee of the California Minority Counsel Program.

Potter, the father of a son, Jameson, and daughter, Lauren, lives and works in San Francisco, California.

See how James G. Potter is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of James G. Potter's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - James G. Potter lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - James G. Potter describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - James G. Potter describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - James G. Potter describes his parents' relationship
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - James G. Potter talks about being adopted
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - James G. Potter describes his earliest childhood memories
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - James G. Potter describes growing up in Richmond, Indiana
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - James G. Potter describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - James G. Potter reflects on his greatest childhood influences
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - James G. Potter describes the Glen Miller Park Zoo in Richmond, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - James G. Potter describes the historic homes of Richmond, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - James G. Potter describes his mother's famous relatives
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - James G. Potter describes Vaile Elementary School in Richmond, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - James G. Potter recalls his favorite school subjects
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - James G. Potter remembers the small black population in Richmond, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - James G. Potter remembers an incident at Vaile Elementary School, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - James G. Potter remembers an incident at Vaile Elementary School, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - James G. Potter describes his demeanor at Richmond Senior High School
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - James G. Potter recalls deciding to attend the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 2 Story: 10 - James G. Potter reflects upon the influence of church
  • Tape: 2 Story: 11 - James G. Potter describes the campus culture at the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - James G. Potter describes the students at the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - James G. Potter describes the social and geographic boundaries of Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - James G. Potter describes his academics at the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - James G. Potter remembers African American professors at the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - James G. Potter describes his social life at the University of Chicago
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - James G. Potter remembers deciding to be a lawyer
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - James G. Potter remembers working as a dialysis technician
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - James G. Potter remembers his time at Harvard Law School
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - James G. Potter describes the teaching style at Harvard Law School
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - James G. Potter reflects upon the negative aspects of law school
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - James G. Potter reflects upon how Harvard Law School changed his world view
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - James G. Potter remembers being taught by HistoryMaker Derrick A. Bell, Jr.
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - James G. Potter recalls black student organizations at Harvard Law School
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - James G. Potter describes the time constraints of law school
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - James G. Potter explains why his skipped his Harvard Law School graduation
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - James G. Potter remembers working on Harold Washington's mayoral campaign
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - James G. Potter remembers his experience at Keck, Mahin and Cate in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - James G. Potter describes his relationship with his ex-wife
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - James G. Potter explains how to succeed at a law firm
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - James G. Potter tells humorous stories from his time in corporate law
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - James G. Potter describes practicing corporate law
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - James G. Potter explains how corporations slip into bad practices
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - James G. Potter describes the qualities that make him a good lawyer
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - James G. Potter describes his ethics
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - James G. Potter reflects upon corruption in corporate law
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - James G. Potter reflects upon changes in the law profession
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - James G. Potter explains why he left Morgan, Lewis and Bockius
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - James G. Potter remembers joining The Prudential Insurance Company of America
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - James G. Potter compares law firms to corporations
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - James G. Potter remembers proving himself at The Prudential Insurance Company of America
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - James G. Potter reflects upon succeeding with integrity
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - James G. Potter remembers leaving The Prudential Insurance Company of America
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - James G. Potter describes his experience at Provident Mutual Life Insurance Company
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - James G. Potter describes the diversity at Provident Mutual Life Insurance Company
  • Tape: 6 Story: 8 - James G. Potter explains why he joined Del Monte Corporation
  • Tape: 6 Story: 9 - James G. Potter remembers working at Del Monte Corporation
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - James G. Potter describes some of the products Del Monte Foods produces
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - James G. Potter describes his efforts to increase diversity at law firms
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - James G. Potter describes his work with the Coalition to Promote Minority Health
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - James G. Potter describes his concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - James G. Potter talks about his future plans
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - James G. Potter reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 7 Story: 7 - James G. Potter describes his family
  • Tape: 8 Story: 1 - James G. Potter speaks about the reunion of African American Harvard Law School graduates
  • Tape: 8 Story: 2 - James G. Potter describes untold stories of struggle
  • Tape: 8 Story: 3 - James G. Potter describes how he would like to be remembered