As an “extreme extrovert,” Todd Wilkowski has reinvented his legal specialty and become reenergized in his client-centric role as the firmwide head of Frost Brown Todd’s Outside General Counsel Services (OGCS) Group.
“I thrive on meeting people and then connecting them to other people and resources to help them solve their problems, tackle is- sues and take advantage of growth opportunities,” Wilkowski says.
“A good day for me is assisting others in progressing toward these goals, both professionally and personally. The COVID period di- minished personal contact, but we are made for relationships, and I’m passionate about building trusting advisory relationships with our clients to help them grow sustainably.”
Wilkowski’s job regularly inspires and invigorates him, which helps him bring this energy back to those who matter to him most: his wife of 25 years and four children. Borrowing from Henry David Thoreau, he says, “I know too many men who are ‘living quiet lives of desperation,’ who are just trying to get across the finish line to retirement. We only have one life, and that’s not going to be me!
“When I left my previous role as full-time general counsel and first considered Frost Brown Todd, I was immediately struck by how rare it was to find such a large firm that was so innovative, team-oriented and collaborative,” Wilkowski recalls. “Frost Brown Todd has proven to be a fertile seedbed to grow the OGCS Group and allows me to serve as a quarterback and a legal concierge to our clients. In this role, I timely connect my clients with legal and non- legal advice and resources they need to continue to grow.”
The OGCS Group serves privately owned businesses that range from $5 million to $350 million in annual revenue and culturally or financially are not ready yet to bring on a full-time general counsel.
“I regularly connect my clients with Frost Brown Todd’s outstanding legal specialists who have recent and relevant experi- ence in all aspects of the law, and can share their lessons learned and best practices on just about any issue our clients encounter.”
Wilkowski recounted how clients in the small-to-medium- sized private company space benefitted from being immediately connected to Frost Brown Todd’s COVID-19 Response Team, comprised of legal experts in employment law, creditors’ rights, banking law and other specialties. The Response Team provided practical and tailored advice on risk and compliance issues driven by the dynamically changing directives on Paycheck Protection Program loans and other laws and regulations responding to the adverse impacts of COVID-19.
Wilkowski credits the Response Team for providing the “get to yes” advice to several clients that helped them stay open and in business instead of becoming yet another COVID-19 casualty.
When not at his day job, Wilkowski can be found on the field coaching (or cheering loudly) at his kids’ athletic events. He also serves on the Goering Center Board of Advisors, which serves as a think tank and networking location for leaders in Cincinnati’s privately held and/or family-owned businesses community.
“We are so blessed to have the Goering Center, which deeply understands the needs of these businesses that truly are the catalyst for our and other cities’ economies,” says Wilkowski. “It’s a great place to learn about effective business succession, leadership
development, how to form and sustain a board of advisors, and how to formulate and implement a company’s strategic plan.
“Very few cities have a Goering Center-type organization, which is unfortunate. I have learned so much about the issues my clients face, enabling me to better advise them, and I’ve had the opportunity to network and meet some tremendous leaders and entrepreneurs.”
As part of giving back to his adopted and beloved Cincinnati (he and his wife moved here in 1998), he also serves on the board of advisors for The Salvation Army of Greater Cincinnati, and other faith-based, nonprofit organizations — wise stewards of the resources and talent they have been endowed with to serve, equip, and empower the less fortunate in the community.
“I’m so grateful to work in Frost Brown Todd’s West Chester office,” he says. “We serve a rapidly growing business community, and our office is strategically located within 10 miles of most of the private companies that I serve as outside general counsel. It’s easy to be at their offices at a moment’s notice as needed to discuss and advise upon any pressing issues or opportunities. I also love the team we have built in West Chester: collegial, fun and wicked smart.”
Wilkowski also appreciates how committed the West Chester office team members are to making Cincinnati’s northern suburbs a thriving place to live and work.
“If you’re currently working with several different firms that are competing with each other and giving you conflicting advice, or if you’re having trouble managing all your outside legal advisors in addition to trying to run your business, then our OGCS Group is an excellent solution,” he says. “You’ll have one person who is fully accountable and responsive to you, who will connect you with the right experts, provide you timely and practical ‘get to yes’ advice, and is laser-focused on consistently delivering an excellent client experience in every engagement.”
Think Frost Brown Todd LLC might be a good fit for your company’s legal needs? Find out more by visiting frostbrowntodd.com.