Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

New facility will boost Legal Aid’s efforts

An artist’s rendering shows the building that will house Legal Aid of North Carolina’s Innovation Lab at Beacon Point in Raleigh. (Legal Aid of North Carolina)

New facility will boost Legal Aid’s efforts

A Sept. 26 event will officially launch Legal Aid of North Carolina’s Innovation Lab.

The lab, described in a release as “a groundbreaking initiative aimed at fostering creativity and collaboration to drive positive change in the legal system,” will have its permanent home at Beacon Point, a multiagency community hub under construction at 1425 Promise Beacon Circle in the capital city, Helen Hobson, Legal Aid’s chief communications officer, said in an email interview.

“The Innovation Lab is an ongoing initiative at LANC (Legal Aid) to find new and better ways to serve our clients and increase access to justice,” she said.

The launch event will mix technology and cooperative efforts and is meant to elicit guests’ input.

“We’ll be demo-ing a couple of the tech tools that we have incorporated into our work to help us serve clients better and increase efficiency for staff,” Hobson said. “We’re going to be asking attendees to engage in a design thinking exercise by sharing their ideas of ways we can either improve our service delivery, raise funds to support the lab, raise awareness of the work that’s being done, or create partnerships to improve access to justice.”

There also will be remarks by Mary Ann Baldwin, Raleigh’s mayor, and Jeff Kelly, chair of the lab’s advisory board.

The launch will kick off a series of Legal Aid events that will run into January. They include:

  • A “Legal Design Derby” to be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 27, at N.C. Central University in Durham. Teams of LLM and second- and third-year law students will be challenged to develop, refine and present a prototype solution in response to a question posed by the Innovation Lab.
  • Statewide client engagement sessions to gain input from clients and the communities Legal Aid serves. Times, dates and places are to be announced.
  • A workshop will be held at the Legal Services Corp.’s Innovations in Technology Conference to be held in January in Charlotte. The Innovation Lab will host a workshop featuring its staff and leading experts to discuss “Innovation Lab: Pioneering a Novel Approach to Access to Justice,” Hobson said. Its goals include sharing the way Legal Aid uses technology, collaboration and innovative approaches to address and improve access to justice issues in the state and as a model for others.

The Innovation Lab launch event is open by invitation and will be held from 5-6:30 p.m. Sept. 26 at the Nelson Mullins law firm office at 301 Hillsborough St., Raleigh.

For information about Legal Aid of North Carolina, go to •

Top Legal News

See All Top Legal News


See All Commentary