General Counsel

South San Francisco, CA
Jul 05, 2021
Biotech Bay
Required Education
Bachelors Degree
Position Type

About Us:

Vaxart is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing a range of oral recombinant vaccines based on its proprietary delivery platform. Vaxart vaccines are administered using convenient room temperature-stable tablets that can be stored and shipped without refrigeration.

Vaxart has demonstrated that its proprietary tablet vaccine delivery platform is suitable to deliver recombinant vaccines, positioning the company to develop oral versions of currently marketed vaccines and to design recombinant vaccines for new indications. Its development programs currently include tablet vaccines designed to protect against coronavirus, norovirus, seasonal influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), as well as a therapeutic vaccine for human papillomavirus (HPV), Vaxart’s first immuno-oncology indication.

Our mission is the promotion of global health through the development of effective vaccines that can be administered by tablet rather than by injection, providing for the simple and efficient distribution and administration of safe vaccines in any setting.

We are looking for General Counsel to join our growing team!


The General Counsel is a member of the Executive Team. Responsible for advising the Chief Executive Officer, members of the executive leadership team and the Board of Directors on various critical legal and business matters. The General Counsel will provide legal advice on corporate governance, legal and compliance risks, contracts and business terms. The incumbent will develop a good understanding of the Company's operations and possess the ability to evaluate and balance both legal and business factors when providing recommendations. The successful candidate will have a broad knowledge base in areas appropriate for an experienced in-house counsel at a life science company. The incumbent will work in our headquarters, located in South San Francisco, CA.


  • Advise executives, senior management and the Board of Directors on various matters such as legal rights and obligations, and new and existing laws.
  • Provide overall leadership and management of legal and compliance function.
  • Oversee the selection, retention, management, and evaluation of all outside counsel.
  • Provide legal advice related to public company reporting and compliance, including SEC rules and regulations and Nasdaq listing standards; handling statutory filings and licenses, managing and advising on corporate governance and disclosure matters; maintain corporate records; routine counseling on corporate governance matters.
  • Manage the organization's legal matters, including conducting legal research and reviewing company's litigation strategy pertaining to legal actions.
  • Actively participate in corporate-level transactions, including identifying key issues and risks, evaluating new business partnerships with vendors and subcontractors.
  • Develop corporate governance, business and compliance policies and practices, enforce policies and regulations in all aspects and levels across the Company.
  • Oversee compliance with corporate governance and the Company's privacy compliance program, including applicable policies and procedures; participate in training of employees.
  • Ensure that the Company is compliant with its data protection obligations, including (but not limited to), requests for personal data, Data Subject Access Request (DSARs), privacy policies, privacy assessments and data processing agreements.
  • Work closely with the various departments and provide recommendations and comprehensive legal and compliance support where required; guide interdisciplinary teams and management on regulatory issues and health care compliance and provide time and effective legal advice and risk guidance on daily activities; provide risk management and mitigation counseling.
  • Advise on applicable laws, regulations and regulatory guidelines governing scientific interactions with healthcare professionals, patients, advocacy groups and other business partners, including, but not limited to compliance with Federal and state anti-kickback statutes, False Claims Act, the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, HIPAA and product liability law.
  • A hands-on approach and attention to detail in performing various duties, including drafting, reviewing, and negotiating various agreements. Example agreements include contracts with suppliers of materials or services, clinical trial agreements, professional services agreements, consulting agreements, consents/permissions forms, confidentiality agreements, and other miscellaneous contracts and corporate documents.
  • Advise business managers throughout the contract negotiation process with respect to the areas of legal risk and exposure, while recommending strategies to achieve a satisfactory outcome.
  • Create/modify appropriate template contracts tailored to the business needs; draft agreements that minimize risks and maximize legal rights; manage contract database.
  • Negotiate, draft, and implement a variety of multi-party agreements, including mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, and joint ventures.
  • Oversee corporate records and document preservation
  • Board and committee meeting preparation; preparation of Board and committee minutes; facilitate director education.
  • Experience overseeing legal issues relating to human resource functions and compliance with federal and state employment and employee benefit and executive compensation laws.


  • J.D. degree from an accredited college with strong academic credentials
  • 12+ years of hands-on legal experience supporting corporate governance issues, public company reporting, corporate contracting activities and healthcare compliance activities, and corporate secretarial duties
  • Leading law firm and/or in-house medical device/biotechnology/pharmaceutical industry experience is required
  • Active State Bar member
  • Strong knowledge of securities law and contract documents and strong drafting skills, attention to details is important
  • Understanding of, and experience with, regulatory framework applicable to interactions with healthcare professionals, patient privacy, and related issues
  • Experience in strategic alliances and M&A activities
  • Strong understanding of medical device, biotech or pharmaceutical operations and the ability to create policies and programs that work for the business
  • Strong negotiating skills, ability to prioritize, handle multiple tasks and work independently under tight deadlines
  • Proven track record of delivering consistently on complex projects under challenging circumstances with a sense of urgency, but with the ability to also keep broader strategic objectives in focus
  • Ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing in both individual and group settings
  • Excellent oral written communication skills and critical thinking skills.
  • Ability to work as a team member, multi-task and be very flexible to adapt to the ever-changing work priorities and requirements of a dynamic, fast growing company.
  • Proficient knowledge and skill in Microsoft Office Suite applications.
  • Ability to travel up to 10% of the time. Overnight and/or international travel may be required.

Vaxart offers team members a competitive compensation and benefits package, including a bonus program, stock options, 401K with employer matching, tuition assistance, and work life balance.

Vaxart is an Equal Opportunity Employer and values diversity. We are committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity and affirmative action for all applicants and employees. Equal opportunity and consideration are afforded to all qualified applicants and employees in personnel actions, which include: recruiting and hiring, selection for training, promotion, rates of pay or other compensation, transfer, discipline, demotion, layoff or termination. Vaxart does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, pregnancy, gender identity, gender expression, family medical history or genetic information, citizenship, national origin or ancestry, sex, age, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, military status, or any other basis protected by federal, state or local law, ordinance or regulation.