In the mid to late 1990s, a period characterized by mergers, acquisitions and IPOs, general counsels were often Wall Street or Silicon Valley attorneys who had experience with investment bankers. Because of subsequent scandals including Enron, and the advent of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, today's General Counsel job holder is more likely to have been trained in Washington at the SEC, Justice, Treasury, or similarly high-profile federal agency, in addition to a world-class law firm. Given the complexity of today's global business landscape, international experience is often a requirement. Management and directors, and therefore executive headhunters, are often attracted to attorneys who already hold a position as General Counsel of a public company, and General Counsel candidates are expected to have superb academic credentials; experience working closely with Boards of Directors; experience with corporate governance; experience dealing with shareholder initiatives and litigation; and, perhaps, a judicial clerkship. In highly regulated industries such as financial services and life-sciences, executive recruiters will almost always give preference for the General Counsel job to candidates with experience in the same sector. In less highly regulated sectors such as consumer and industrial, the candidate's experience may lie within any sector.