NEW YORK, Sept. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Avon Products, Inc. (NYSE: AVP) today announced the appointment of Jeff Benjamin as Senior Vice President and General Counsel, effective September 12. Mr. Benjamin will report to Sheri McCoy, Avon's Chief Executive Officer, and join the company's Executive Committee. "Creating a productive work environment that continues to enhance our compliance culture is a priority," said Ms. McCoy. "Jeff's proven commitment to business ethics and law compliance and his credibility within and outside the legal profession will be a tremendous asset for Avon." In a career spanning more than forty years prior to his retirement from Novartis Corporation at year-end 2011, Mr. Benjamin developed expertise in litigation, corporate transactions, antitrust, environmental regulation, equal employment opportunity, product liability and ethics and compliance. Throughout his career at Ciba and Novartis, Mr. Benjamin exercised responsibility for the representation of his company in potentially material litigation and government investigations and, with his colleagues, built a solid track record of successful resolutions. He is also known in the legal profession as a leader who recruits and develops high caliber talent. From 1996 through 2011, he served Novartis Corporation (formerly known as Ciba-Geigy Corporation) in a variety of General Counseling positions. In addition, from 1997 through 2010, Mr. Benjamin served as Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer and Chair of the Ethics & Compliance Committee until his retirement in 2011. In 1996, after the announcement of the Ciba Geigy-Sandoz merger agreement, Mr. Benjamin became General Counsel of Ciba-Geigy Corporation, counseling the Board of Directors and representing the company in Federal Trade Commission proceedings that ultimately led to the largest corporate merger in history up until that time. Between 1986 and 1996, Mr. Benjamin served as Vice-President, Associate General Counsel and Legal Department Director, a period during which he also helped institute the company's first formal compliance program. He became Deputy Compliance Officer in the late 1980s.