Get to know us
Our leadership team brings together years of experience in the law, entrepreneurship and project management.
Director of Applied Innovation
UC Hastings College of the Law
Professor Alice Armitage is the Director of Applied Innovation at UC Hastings, where she oversees the concentration of law and technology. During her time at Hastings, she has run two innovative hubs on our campus; first the Startup Legal Garage and now LexLab. Alice began her career as an international tax attorney at Arnold & Porter in Washington DC, moving from there to a position in the Office of the International Chief Counsel at the US Internal Revenue Service to develop tax policy for complex cross-border financial transactions.
More recently, Alice took a break from practicing law to found two startups. Her experience as a two-time entrepreneur ultimately led her to UC Hastings as Director of the Startup Legal Garage. In her time as Director of this popular program, Alice developed an extensive network within both the tech and the legal communities of Silicon Valley.
Alice now teaches legal technology courses focused on both access to justice and for-profit legal tech startups. In both courses, Alice teaches skills not traditionally taught at law school, including design thinking, multi disciplinary collaboration, entrepreneurial fundamentals, and oral and visual communication skills.
Professor Armitage is a graduate of the Yale Law School where she was the first woman Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Law Journal. She also has an A.B. and an M.A. in British and American Literature from Brown University.
Before joining LexLab, Drew was a Visiting Assistant Professor at UC Hastings. He taught courses in intellectual property and entrepreneurship and managed the Startup Legal Garage. His early career included years at Sidley Austin, Taylor & Company, and clerking for the Honorable Joan N. Ericksen, United States District Court for the District of Minnesota. A pioneer in legal innovation, Drew founded a startup in 2011 that created an online community to connect law firms and companies with highly skilled freelance attorneys.
Drew is a graduate of Columbia Law School and has a B.A. in Philosophy from Carleton College.
Julia joined the LexLab team in Summer 2020 as project lead and deals with outreach, research, and project management, as well as communication between LexLab and the startups in its accelerator. Before joining LexLab, Julia was an English Language Co-Teacher in the Peace Corps in North Macedonia, where she worked to introduce student-centered teaching and expand language learning opportunities outside of the classroom. She has also conducted technology, migration, and education policy research for government agencies and non-profits in the U.S., France, and China. She has a strong interest in public policy, law, tech, education, and community development.
Julia has a B.A. in Economics and Architecture History from Rice University.
Our Advisory Board represents an array of thought leaders, movers, and shakers in the legal technology space. We are thrilled to have them involved as a vital component of LexLab.
General Counsel, Scale Venture Partners
Mr. Eberle joined ScaleVP as General Counsel in 2016. He is responsible for Scale Venture Partners’ fund and portfolio legal matters as well as becoming a key point of contact for our limited partners. Prior to Scale, Mr. Eberle spent 17 years at Silicon Valley Bank, most recently as Deputy General Counsel. At SVB, Mr. Eberle was responsible for global expansion and international business legal support, strategic and venture capital investments, strategic relationships, product development, regulatory and compliance, and governance issues. He also helped launch SVB’s venture capital program, SVB Capital.
President, Blackstone Discovery
Derek Duarte, a widely recognized legal thought leader and innovator, is President of BlackStone Discovery, a global computer forensics, eDiscovery, and Managed Review provider. Most recently, he was named one of Silicon Valley’s 40 best business leaders under the age of 40 (40 under 40) by the Silicon Valley Business Journal for leading BlackStone Discovery's rapid growth and disruption of the eDiscovery industry.
Head of Product, NextLaw Labs
Maya leads the definition, development and launch of innovative solutions for NextLaw Labs. She delivers next-generation technology, process and innovation consulting services across the globe for the Dentons ecosystem, bringing deep knowledge of legal tech through hands-on experimentation with new products, including those in the portfolio of investment arm, Nextlaw Ventures. Collaborating with legal tech communities and experts worldwide, she continually evolves Nextlaw Labs' partnership and investment strategies. She was named one of ABA Legal Technology Resource Center's "Women of Legal Tech 2018."
Patrick graduated from UC Hastings in '95 and spent 5 years practicing Corporate and Securities law as an attorney with Venture Law Group before embarking on a business career that has included roles in 3 startups and stints at Yahoo (VP of Product Management) and Intuit (VP and GM, Demandforce business unit). Patrick is currently the COO of legal tech startup Logikcull, a SF-based cloud software company that is disrupting the $15B eDiscovery industry. Patrick lives in Palo Alto with his wife of 27 years and has 3 amazing adult children.
Former Orrick corporate partner and cofounder of Atrium
Augie Rakow, Class of 2007, is former Orrick corporate partner and cofounder of Atrium, a venture capital-backed law firm for startups that represents hundreds of startups. Atrium has raised over $75 million in financing from Andreessen Horowitz, General Catalyst, Y Combinator and leading Silicon Valley investors. Augie recruited and led Atrium’s 70-person legal team from $0 to $15 million monthly revenue in two years through service, process and technology innovations designed to bring scale to high-end legal services for the fastest-growing startups.
Before becoming a lawyer, Augie studied theological history at Harvard University and is a past president and chairman of the Harvard Club of San Francisco.
Augie is currently semi-retired while working on a new venture in professional legal services.
Samantha Von Hoene
Chief Legal Officer, Enjoy Technology Inc.
Samantha is the Chief Legal Officer at Enjoy Technology Inc. Enjoy is a disruptive mobile retail platform that pairs the convenience of online commerce with the confidence of brick-and-mortar locations by delivering an on-demand store to customer's homes. In her role, Samantha oversees the legal and compliance functions and focuses on strategic initiatives that move Enjoy forward while mitigating global risks. In addition, Samantha runs the San Francisco general counsel's (SFGC's) legal network, helps build various in-house legal intern and extern programs, and collaborates with attorneys and key international business personnel to progress innovation within the legal and compliance space.
Michele Benedetto Neitz
Professor of Law, Golden Gate University School of Law
Michele Benedetto Neitz is a Professor of Law at Golden Gate University School of Law, where she teaches Blockchain and the Law, Business Associations, Legal Ethics, and other classes. She has been voted “Most Outstanding Professor” by the graduating class of GGU Law five times, most recently in Spring 2020. She was appointed to advise the California legislature as a member of the California Blockchain Working Group in 2019.
Professor Neitz researches and lectures on ethical and regulatory issues in blockchain technology. She published the first law review article examining ethics in blockchain technology in January 2020. Her latest article, How to Regulate Blockchain’s Real-Life Applications: Lessons from the California Blockchain Working Group, will be published in Jurimetrics in February 2021.
Professor Neitz also publishes on blogs, with posts in 2020 on Machine Lawyering and the FinReg Blog. She regularly speaks at tech and law conferences on these issues, including recent presentations at the CITRIS Research Exchange Panel at UC Berkeley and the University of Tokyo’s Blockchain Research Group Meeting.