General Counsel joined the Office of General Counsel in 2014. Gary began serving as general counsel effective July 1, 2015. Prior to joining MnSCU in house, Gary represented Minnesota State Colleges and Universities in employment matters as an Assistant Attorney General for over 20 years. With respect to the Office of General Counsel, Gary has concentrated on employment issues and training. In addition to his employment law practice at the Attorney General’s Office, Gary was counsel to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission and a consumer advocate.
Previously Gary was an attorney in private practice in Atlanta, Georgia and Chicago, Illinois. Gary received his B.S. in Mathematics from Purdue University and his J.D, from the University of Illinois, graduating magna cum laude.
Kristine Legler Kaplan (Kris)
Deputy General Counsel concentrates in data practices, immigration, international study programs and other areas.
Kris joined the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Office of General Counsel in 2000.
In addition to other public and private legal practice, Kris was previously an Assistant Minnesota Attorney General in the Employment and Health Licensing Divisions, and an Assistant Ramsey County Attorney in the Civil Division.
Kris received both her JD and B.S. (Occupational Therapy) from the University of Minnesota.
Mary Al Balber
Assistant General Counsel has an extensive background representing state, tribal and municipal governments.
Mary Al was with the Minneapolis City Attorney's Office in the civil division where she advised city officials, departments, boards and commissions. She was also Solicitor General for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe and a former Assistant General Counsel for the Prairie Island Dakota Indian Community.
In addition, she was an Assistant Attorney General in the Minnesota Attorney General's Office where she represented state agencies in construction, contract and environmental matters for more than six years. In her new position, Mary Al's primary focus is transactional matters including construction, contracts and intellectual property.
Mary Al received her J.D. from Hamline University School of Law, St. Paul, and her B.S. (Mass Communications) from Northern Michigan University, Marquette, Michigan.
Scott Goings joined the General Counsel’s Office in 2008 after previously representing the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities as an Assistant Attorney General in the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office. He has sixteen years of experience in higher education law with a focus on student affairs, athletics, litigation and litigation management, foundations, and contracts.
Scott previously practiced law with the Minneapolis firm of Leonard, Street and Deinard and clerked for the Honorable Harold D. Vietor, United States District Judge for the Southern District of Iowa. He received his J.D. from the University of Iowa College of Law and his B.A. (Philosophy) from Grinnell College. Scott is an adjunct faculty member in the Higher Education Administration doctoral program at St. Cloud State University.
Assistant General Counsel joined the Office of General Counsel in December of 2012. Sarah's focus is in intellectual property, information technology, and other areas.
Most recently, Sarah was an Assistant Attorney General in the Minnesota Attorney General's Office where she represented state agencies, including MnSCU, in tort, employment, and other matters for the past five years. Sarah previously practiced in the areas of intellectual property, litigation, and employment law with the Minneapolis offices of Fulbright & Jaworski and Faegre Baker Daniels.
Sarah received her J.D. from the University of Colorado School of Law and her B.S. (Biology) from Brown University.
Legal Analyst works with contracts, real estate transactions, intellectual property and copyright, data practices, and other areas.
A graduate of Minnesota State University, Moorhead with a Bachelor of Science degree in Legal Assistant, Heidi has paralegal experience in various legal areas for governmental agencies.