My usual comments about titles in legal departments culminate in something about Associate Counsel being senior or junior to Assistant Counsel. That pair of titles seems quite common, and usually in that order of ascendancy. But the title stepping-stones for the home office attorneys at Allstate sit quite differently.
From a presentation at the SuperConference, we learn that Allstate’s lawyers proceed from Staff Attorney to Attorney; then Senior Attorney; up to Corporate Counsel; and top out as Officer. Nary a mention of Associate General Counsel or Assistant General Counsel. Nor does it matter. It is important to some degree that lawyers and others outside the company appreciate, at least reasonably well, the level of someone from their title alone. Otherwise, a counsel by any other name would smell as sweet.
As an aside, I suppose to some a “Senior Attorney” sounds pretty influential, as compared to a mere “Corporate Counsel,” but that is mere speculation (See my post of June 26, 2008: titles with 15 references.).