Photo of Sam Karlin

Sam Karlin

  • Hosted by Start Small Think Big
  • Sponsored by Latham & Watkins LLP
  • Service location New York, New York
  • Law school Harvard Law School
  • Issue area Community Economic Development/Microfinance and Related Transactional Legal Projects, Community/Economic Development, Racial Justice
  • Fellowship class year 2021
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Sam (he/him/his) will increase access to traditional transactional legal services for low-income, BIPOC, and women entrepreneurs and help them navigate the legal barriers to raising capital through accessible securities offerings.

Despite accounting for more than 50% of New York City’s population, Black and Latinx individuals own less than 10% of New York City businesses. Black or Latinx individuals that are able to start a business are pushed toward lower-financed ventures with lower survival rates. In fact, these entrepreneurs are three times more likely to have growth and profitability negatively impacted by a lack of capital than white entrepreneurs. However, the specialized nature of securities law means that for most under-resourced businesses, finding and/or paying the cost of legal counsel is a barrier to access.

Fellowship Plans

During his Fellowship, Sam will help under-resourced businesses grow, create jobs, and build community wealth. He will do this by counseling clients on avenues to raise funds through accessible, exempt securities offerings. He will prepare all necessary legal documents and undertake any necessary compliance filings. Sam will work with Start Small’s in-house finance and marketing teams to effectively design, structure, and market the offerings. He will create an education program to inform entrepreneurs and the public about local securities offerings.


Eight from Harvard Law named Equal Justice Works Fellows

I want the businesses in the community to reflect the people of the community, while at the same time making sure that entrepreneurs can pay themselves a reasonable salary, hire the help they need, and build for the future.

Sam Karlin /
2021 Equal Justice Works Fellow

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