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Virgin Galactic’s top lawyer leaves for electric vehicle charging company Volta

Virgin Galactic's top lawyer leaves for electric vehicle charging company Volta
  • Michelle Kley Joins Volta as Chief Legal Officer
  • Sidley Austin Partner William Cooper Becomes Deputy General Counsel at Volta

(Reuters) – Volta Inc said Tuesday that the electric vehicle charging company has hired Michelle Kley, who will resign from her top attorney position at Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc, the space tourism firm founded by billionaire businessman Richard Branson.

Kley will join Volta as Chief Legal Officer beginning July 20, the company said in a statement. Volta, which operates a network of electric vehicle charging stations, has shaken leadership following the recent departure of its CEO and president.

Kley will resign as top attorney at Virgin Galactic effective July 19, according to a securities filing filed on July 8.

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Virgin Galactic did not immediately respond to a request for comment about Kley’s departure or who will replace her.

William Cooper, a capital markets partner at major law firm Sidley Austin, will join San Francisco-based Volta as deputy general counsel on July 18, Volta said in his statement Tuesday.

A Sidley spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Cooper’s departure.

Virgin Galactic is facing a shareholder lawsuit filed last year over accounting practices related to its 2019 merger with a special purpose corporation (SPAC). The company filed a motion in April to dismiss an amended version of the lawsuit. point.

SPACs raise funds through IPOs to combine with privately held companies and make them public. They have been the subject of more lawsuits from investors in recent years, including over alleged accounting flaws.

Volta went public last year through a merger with a SPAC.

The company lost two top executives this spring with the resignation of CEO Scott Mercer and president Chris Wendel, according to a March statement.

Vincent Cubbage, who is now Volta’s interim CEO, said in the statement it was time to “identify new leadership with experience in managing public companies.”

In addition to Cubbage, other recent C-suite hires and promotions at Volta have included Steven Schnitzer as an interim general counsel, according to a June company statement. Volta said in the statement that Schnitzer was appointed following the recent departure of former general counsel Jim DeGraw.

Kley and Cooper will replace DeGraw, who is working with Schnitzer shortly, a Volta spokesperson said.

The spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request from Tuesday for additional comment on the departures of Mercer, Wendel and DeGraw.

Read more:

Volta’s EV charging network goes public through a $2 billion SPAC deal

Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic Soars Before Crashing To Earth In NYSE Debut

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