A multi-disciplinary pro bono team from Goodwin Procter LLP, a national Am
Law 50 firm, played a key role in providing corporate and legal infrastructure
support for the recent successful launch of Jumo, a new social network
connecting individuals and organizations working for global change. Jumo
(a West African word meaning "to come together") is the brainchild of Facebook
co-founder Chris Hughes and helps everyday people find, follow and support those
working to improve the lives of others in communities across the U.S. and around
When Hughes joined Goodwin Procter client General Catalyst Partners as an
entrepreneur-in-residence, following his online organizing work on the Obama
campaign team, he was seeking new business opportunities that leveraged social
media tools to do good on a global basis. When Jumo needed help with
start-up issues, a team of Goodwin attorneys rose to the pro bono challenge.
Among the Boston lawyers involved in the effort were partners Susan Abbott,
Janet Andolina, Robert Blasi, David Cappillo, Anna Dodson, Heidi Goldstein
Shepherd and William Schnoor.
"Goodwin Procter has provided Jumo with invaluable support and a dedicated
team of individuals, instrumental in the start-up process," said Hughes.
Goodwin's work with Jumo began in late 2009. Attorneys and professional
staff members have provided a wide variety of legal assistance to Jumo,
including advising on patent and trademark applications, confidentiality
preparing the trademark application for the Jumo logo design; researching
regulatory and international banking issues and website review.
Most importantly, perhaps, was pro bono work to ensure that an innovative
venture such as Jumo was properly structured to qualify and operate as a
501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, meeting IRS and New York State guidelines.
"Working with Chris and his energetic team has been extremely rewarding,"
said David Cappillo, partner at Goodwin's Boston office. "Jumo's focus on
changing the game for the nonprofit industry in terms of communication and
collaboration is truly inspiring."
Jumo debuted with considerable fanfare and press coverage from outlets
including The New York Times and CNN. Organizations or groups with a
charitable mission - from neighborhood soup kitchens to health clinics in India
- can establish a social media presence by creating a profile page on
Jumo. Organizations are allowed to accept donations via Jumo, but must be
certified as tax-exempt in order to do so.
The site also simplifies connections for members of the general public
looking for charitable causes to support. By following any given
organization or issue of interest, users can receive updated news about the
cause and the organization's work, as well as information on how to help.
Users can also add their own feedback and comments, and, through a Facebook
tie-in, find Facebook friends and follow their organizations of