King & Spalding LLP Partners with Russell Center to Support Black Entrepreneurs and Business Owners Effort Highlights Firm’s Commitment to Equitable Economic Opportunity
King & Spalding and the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) today announced their strategic partnership to invest and provide legal support and education to Atlanta’s Black entrepreneurs and small business owners. The partnership includes pro bono legal counseling, a multi-year financial commitment, and the launch of the reimagined “King & Spalding Think Tank”, a multi-use space that provides a welcoming place for all RICE stakeholders to gather, learn and collaborate.
The King & Spalding partnership with RICE is a comprehensive effort involving attorneys and professional staff across the Atlanta office. King & Spalding as the sole legal partner joins other global companies to provide wrap-around services and support to these high potential entrepreneurs.
King & Spalding lawyers will provide one-on-one legal counsel, periodic presentations on legal topics and a digital video library of legal curriculum covering a range of business-related topics including entity formation, the trademark process, contracts, employment/HR and tax registration.
“King & Spalding has a long-standing commitment to the City of Atlanta and its business community – we support, enhance and celebrate the growth of our clients, our people and the community,” said Josh Kamin, managing partner of the firm’s Atlanta office. “RICE’s mission to empower and support Black-owned businesses in a collaborative way is keenly aligned with our culture. We are eager to jump in and leverage our legal and business experience to help this generation of high-potential entrepreneurs achieve all the success that they can.”
The partnership has launched in a meaningful way. The firm is already working with the Pacesetters Studio, RICE’s invitation-only experience supporting ten growth stage Black-led companies selected for a two-year in-house entrepreneur studio experience. And King & Spalding is including these entrepreneurs in the firm’s client-only events, like the recent Power of Inclusion in Times of Crisis panel discussion moderated by King & Spalding partner and former Acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates.
“Access is key and having access to sound legal counsel at the times it matters most, is critical to business success,” said James Bailey, CEO and president of RICE.
The King & Spalding partnership with RICE is an effort that has been embraced with enthusiasm by both attorneys and professional staff across the Atlanta office sharing their time, talent and resources. There has also been an opportunity for King & Spalding to innovate along with the entrepreneurs. For example, the firm’s IT department created a customized online portal for RICE to permit RICE businesses to efficiently submit requests and receive pro bono support and the firm’s audio-visual team is creating a library of legal topic videos featuring King & Spalding attorneys. Personnel across the office have made individual monetary contributions to support the Think Tank, and lawyers have already logged over 200 pro bono hours helping Pacesetters with a variety of legal issues.
“The RICE partnership provides a meaningful way for individuals across the office to serve the Atlanta community that has supported our firm since its inception,” said Robert Benson, King & Spalding partner. “We are committed to breaking down barriers and creating equal opportunity for these businesses to access high-quality resources that will ensure they achieve their goals. The success of these entrepreneurs and their businesses will benefit the broader community and ensure the enduring success of Atlanta as a whole.”
About King & Spalding
Celebrating more than 130 years of service, King & Spalding is an international law firm that represents a broad array of clients, including half of the Fortune Global 100, with 1,200 lawyers in 22 offices in the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. The firm has handled matters in over 160 countries on six continents and is consistently recognized for the results it obtains, uncompromising commitment to quality, and dedication to understanding the business and culture of its clients. More information is available at www.kslaw.com.
About Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs RICE
Founded in 2016, to honor the legacy of the late H.J. Russell Sr., the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE), is a nonprofit organization that seeks to address systemic barriers and wealth disparity by educating, equipping, and empowering black entrepreneurs and business owners. Concentrating on the best resources in the country for small business growth and development under one roof, RICE is a single destination for moving companies forward. We are all about providing access. Access to resources, capital, networks, information, education, and guidance; the essential points of connectivity that are required for businesses to succeed, and yet often are outside the reach of many. We invest in Black entrepreneurs, strengthen businesses, and create community. RICE provides a way forward through innovative programming targeted at Black entrepreneurs and small business owners. Learn more about us at www.russellcenter.org