Troy-based Law Firm Harness Dickey Appoints Bill Coughlin CEO

Bill Coughlin
Bill Coughlin // Photo courtesy of Harness Dickey

Harness Dickey in Troy has appointed Bill Coughlin CEO. Coughlin will work with the firm’s executive committee and will oversee the firm’s short and long-term strategic business planning, client development, and firmwide operations.

“The unique skillset Bill brings as CEO will enable us to enhance our clients’ ability to innovate and bring exciting products and services to the consumers and companies that need them,” says Gary Yacura, a member of the executive committee. “Bill knows the firm and our culture, understands first-hand the legal issues and complexities our clients face, and is skilled at managing diverse teams. Combined with his entrepreneurial mindset and technology savvy, we are confident that he is the right person to help lead the firm into our next century in business and beyond.”

Coughlin began his career at Harness Dickey and spent 17 years at the firm. He left in 1995 to pursue a career in automotive corporations. He led Chrysler’s, and DaimlerChrysler’s legal intellectual property teams until 2000. He then moved to Ford Motor Co. as assistant general counsel and CEO of Ford Global Technologies LLC, an intellectual property subsidiary.

Coughlin has experience in the Detroit region’s business and technology communities. Before his tenure at Harness Dickey, Coughlin was an electrical engineer developing batteries for electric vehicles. He worked with engineers while at Ford to help grow their capabilities. Coughlin also taught as an adjunct professor at Western Michigan University specializing in trade secret law, e-commerce law, and intellectual property risk management.

“It’s exciting to return to the firm where I launched what has been a challenging, enjoyable, and fulfilling career,” says Coughlin. “I look forward to helping Harness Dickey build on its long legacy as one of the preeminent intellectual property firms representing companies and institutions of all sizes worldwide.”

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