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Tasked with anticipating conflicts and protecting the McDonald’s brand across the globe, Gloria Santona oversees the company’s global legal, compliance and regulatory teams. She also works closely with McDonald’s independent Board of Directors as their liaison to senior management.
Well-versed in the challenges facing the brand after three decades with McDonald’s, Santona held several leadership positions, including Corporate Secretary and U.S. General Counsel, before becoming Corporate General Counsel in 2001. To drive McDonald’s evolving business priorities, Santona challenges her teams to balance their legal expertise with business acumen.
Widely respected in the legal profession, Santona was named an Outstanding General Counsel by the National Law Journal in 2014. Among other awards, she has been recognized as one of America’s Top General Counsels by Corporate Board Member magazine. Under Santona’s leadership, McDonald’s legal department has been recognized for its commitments to women and diversity.
Santona provides thoughtful insight into corporate governance, which comes, in part, from her roles on the Boards of Directors for other businesses and organizations. She is a member of the Board of Directors of Aon, the Constitutional Rights Foundation of Chicago and The Chicago Network and a trustee of Rush University Medical Center.
Santona earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Michigan State University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School, graduating cum laude.