Client: Seeding Labs
Member Firm: Foley Hoag LLP
Sector: Science & Technology
Legal Area: Labor & Employment, Contracts, Immigration
More than 1,500 students at a university in Ghana are now using equipment from Seeding Labs to develop the skills they need to become medical
laboratory technologists, biomedical scientists, nurses, midwives, and other critically-needed health workers. Photo used with permission of Seeding Labs
Seeding Labs is a Massachusetts nonprofit working to transform the map of scientific innovation by addressing the critical lack of startup capital for scientists in developing countries. By repurposing surplus laboratory equipment from local research institutions and providing it to researchers abroad, the organization reduces waste at home, ensures that talented scientists abroad can address critical health and environmental problems facing their communities, and bridges the scientific communities across international borders.
Since its inception in 2007, Seeding Labs has shipped 152 tons of equipment to talented scientists overseas, provided more than $5.3 million of donated lab equipment and supplies, and helped researchers and students at 51 universities and institutions around the globe.
Founder and CEO Nina Dudnik began the effort to build Seeding Labs as a PhD student in molecular biology at Harvard Medical School in 2003. She was a finalist in the 2006 MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition and was awarded an Echoing Green fellowship in 2007 to formally launch and expand Seeding Labs.
Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation collaborator Echoing Green introduced the Foundation to Nina in 2008. The Foundation sourced legal assistance from Lex Mundi member law firm Foley Hoag LLP which has been supporting Seeding Labs ever since (for nearly ten years!).
Through two different teams at Foley Hoag, Seeding Labs has received crucial assistance with employment law, international visa issues, and with contracts that have helped secure millions of dollars in funding and in-kind support from global corporations.
“I am grateful to the Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation.” Dudnik recently said. “As an Echoing Green Fellow, you connected me to Foley Hoag in 2008 and I'm proud to say they are still supporting us with pro bono counsel 9 years later! I know that Seeding Labs' success has been furthered by the help from Foley Hoag through the Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation.”
"Foley Hoag has a long history of providing pro bono legal services to nonprofit groups on a local and national scale," said Foley Hoag partner Mark Haddad, who co-chairs the firm's Business Department. "The fact that Seeding Labs is also based in Massachusetts and benefits developing countries has made our work with them all the more meaningful. We are proud to help this unique organization in many capacities as it delivers significant scientific impact with global reach."