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Association of Corporate Counsel Names Western Union, Husch Blackwell and Evisort 2022 Value Champions

ACC Recognizes Husch Blackwell for Innovation for Third Time



October 26, 2022

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The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) has recognized Western Union, Husch Blackwell and Evisort for their collaboration in implementing an innovative program to overhaul and streamline Western Union’s approach to and management of its contracts.

A component of the ACC Value Challenge—which promotes reconnecting the cost and value of legal services— the ACC Value Champions initiative recognizes collaborations that delivered substantial value to their client organizations by cutting spending, improving predictability and achieving better legal results.

Husch Blackwell partnered with Western Union and Evisort to design and implement a library of contract templates and playbooks, which provides Western Union’s procurement team with a formal review and decision framework to assist with triaging contracts. A team of Husch Blackwell corporate attorneys led by Peggy Barlett worked with Western Union’s in-house legal and procurement teams to create eight different templates and five different playbooks, which resulted in consistent, key contractual terms for Western Union that previously would have required input from many more resources on a contract-by-contract basis. After employing the new model, Western Union’s contract volume has grown 40% year-over-year, but the average contract execution time has decreased by 65%.

“Our team is pleased to have been recognized as a Value Champion,” said David Linenbroker, the Husch Blackwell partner lead on the Western Union relationship. “I’m delighted with the efficiencies we were able to realize with Western Union and am confident the model will continue to deliver year-over-year cost savings."

Director of Legal Operations Kevin Bielawski and his team played a pivotal role in facilitating the initiative and coordinating an appropriate fee arrangement (AFA).

The 2022 Value Champions award marks the third year that the ACC has recognized a Husch Blackwell client collaboration. The firm also won a 2017 Value Champions honor for its collaboration with Express Scripts Inc and 2018 Value Champions recognition for its partnership with Monsanto.

The award was formally presented at the ACC Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, October 23-26, 2022.

The complete list of the 2022 ACC Value Champions can be viewed online on the ACC website.


Peggy Barlett

Senior Counsel

Kevin Bielawski, MBA, PMP, ALPP

Director of Legal Operations