Over 300 Minority-Owned Businesses Attend BizGrow Conference

Economic Justice, Racial Justice

Lawyers for Civil Rights and nearly two dozen Boston law firms and corporate sponsors will host the BizGrow Conference a free event providing hundreds of minority-owned, woman-owned, and immigrant-owned small businesses with free legal consultations and technical support. The BizGrow Conference will be held virtually on July 22, 2021 from 10 AM to 4 PM. Now in its fifth year, this one-day event will serve over 300 entrepreneurs with more than 200 volunteer attorneys and business professionals offering free legal and technical assistance. 

“The BizGrow Conference helps to close wealth and opportunity gaps in communities of color,” said Priya Lane, LCR | BizGrow Director. Ms. Lane noted that recent reports — such as the exclusion of minority contractors from the construction of Worcester’s Polar Park — continue to reveal alarming inequities along racial lines in Massachusetts’s business ecosystem. “Providing entrepreneurs with free legal support is an essential ingredient for the sustainable growth of minority-owned, woman-owned, and immigrant-owned businesses. We offer the resources businesses need to compete and thrive in the market.” 

The BizGrow Conference will feature volunteer attorneys from nearly two dozen Boston law firms, including Goodwin, Nixon Peabody, Ropes & Gray, Brown Rudnick, WilmerHale, Morgan Lewis, Foley Hoag, and Mintz Levin providing free one-on-one legal consultations to current and aspiring entrepreneurs on small business legal issues. 

The BizGrow Conference will offer 18 technical assistance workshops across the day including: 

  • Goodwin on doing business online, contracts, crowdfunding, and food labeling;
  • Nixon Peabody on commercial leases; and
  • Financial institutions such as LEAF and the Boston Impact Initiative on access to capital for small businesses. 

Timely COVID-19 topics have been introduced to support businesses, including “pandemic-related employment issues” and “pandemic-proofing your business.”

Sponsors include participating law firms and The Boston Foundation. Corporate supporters include Eastern Bank, Santander, the Boston Impact Initiative, the Black Economic Council of Massachusetts (BECMA), and the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC). 

The BizGrow Conference is a signature annual event of LCR | BizGrow, which provides free legal assistance, business support, and technical assistance to minority, immigrant, and women business owners—ensuring they encounter fewer obstacles and more opportunities. Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2021, LCR annually serves nearly 1200 small businesses across industries, sectors, and markets. Over 90% of businesses assisted are minority-owned or immigrant-owned, and over 60% are women-owned. LCR connects pro bono attorneys to entrepreneurs with specific legal needs, and conducts technical assistance workshops throughout the year on topics of interest to small businesses. 

For more information, please visit: http://lawyersforcivilrights.org/BizGrow