Executive Leadership

Wendy L. Hufford is Founder and President of Effective Dispute Management, LLC, a premier legal consulting firm that has been in business since 2009. Wendy has most recently served as Senior Vice President, General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Chief Compliance and Risk Officer of Chico's FAS, Inc., a public multi-brand specialty retailer in the S&P 600, from September 2021 through January 2024. In this role, where she was responsible for all Legal, Compliance and Enterprise Risk matters, Wendy created a new Compliance program, a new Enterprise Risk Management Program and improved the company's Environmental, Social and Governance Program.  Wendy also led the successful acquisition of the company by a private equity firm in January 2024, resulting in Chico's FAS becoming privately held. 

Wendy previously served as Senior Vice President, General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer of Ascena Retail Group, Inc. from October 2018 through April 2020, prior to Ascena filing for bankruptcy. Ascena was a Fortune 500 company that held a series of iconic retail brands, including Ann Taylor, LOFT, Dressbarn, Justice, Lou & Gray, Catherine's and Lane Bryant. In that role, she was responsible for all Legal, Compliance, Risk Assessment and Government Affairs matters.

She was previously the Chief Legal Operating Officer & Vice President, US Litigation, Risk Management & Human Resources at Boehringer Ingelheim USA and its subsidiaries from April 2015 through September 2018, where she was responsible for all Litigation, Government Investigation, Risk Management and Human Resources counseling functions. Boehringer Ingelheim is one of the world's 20 leading pharmaceutical companies.

Prior to that Wendy was Vice President, Deputy General Counsel and Assistant Secretary to ITT Corporation from April 2010 through November 2014.  In that role, she was responsible for handling global employment, benefits and executive compensation, privacy, ethics and compliance and corporate governance matters.  She was also in charge of managing the global intellectual property and contracts teams and for leading legal operations, including managing all outside counsel and significant vendor relationships globally.  She was the primary project manager for all legal work related to ITT's double spin-off, which created two new public companies.

Immediately prior to her founding Effective Dispute Management in 2009, Wendy was Executive Vice President and Chief Litigation Counsel of Cardinal Health from July 2006 through August 2009.  In this role, she was responsible for managing the Litigation group and preventing, managing and resolving significant litigation.  Before going to Cardinal Health, Wendy was Senior Global Litigation Counsel for GE Consumer Finance based in Stamford, CT, where she had been since November of 1997.  At GE Consumer Finance, Ms. Hufford created a Global Litigation Center of Excellence, implemented a consumer arbitration program and invented a Comprehensive Early Warning System process to prevent litigation.  

Before working at GE Consumer Finance, Ms. Hufford was Vice President and Senior Litigation Counsel at the global investment bank of Credit Suisse First Boston, based in New York City.  She was in private practice from 1988-1995 at Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York, specializing in litigation.  From 1986-88, she served as a law clerk for the Honorable Robert J. Ward on the U.S District Court of the Southern District Court of New York.  Ms. Hufford is a graduate of Colgate University, where she was valedictorian of her class, and a graduate of The Yale Law School, where she was an Editor of the Yale Law Journal and the Yale Law & Policy Review.