Kristin Turner ’17 named Public Welfare Foundation A2J Tech Fellow

Inaugural fellowship provides funding for work at the intersection of technology and access to justice

Kristin Turner ’17 named Public Welfare Foundation A2J Tech Fellow

Kristin Turner ’17

Kristin Turner ’17 was selected as the recipient of Harvard Law School’s  Public Welfare Foundation A2J Tech Fellowship. She will spend year working with Upsolve, a nonprofit that has developed an automated, end-to-end, TurboTax-like platform designed to guide both debtors and attorneys through the Chapter 7 bankruptcy process.

The Public Welfare Foundation A2J Tech Fellowship was established in September 2017 with a generous gift from the Public Welfare Foundation. The fellowship enables an HLS alum or graduating student to work with a legal services provider on projects that hold promise for improving the way individuals and families who cannot afford to hire lawyers interact with the legal system.

At HLS, Turner explored the fields of social entrepreneurship, venture philanthropy, and social impact bonds (also known as Pay for Success Contracts). She served as a member of the Harvard Defenders, the Women’s Law Association, and the Law School Parody. She was the 2016 – 2017 president of the Black Law Students Association and a semifinalist in Harvard Business School’s New Venture Competition 2016. She holds a B.A. in political science from the University of Southern California and currently serves on the executive committee for the Harvard Law School Association.

Professor Daniel Nagin, vice dean for experiential and clinical education and chair of the selection committee, said: “Kristin was our ideal candidate: she possesses a top-rate legal mind, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a dedication to serving the public good. Her unique combination of experience in technology, community collaborations, and public interest law makes her a perfect fit for Upsolve. Technology and innovation have important roles to play in ensuring our legal system is responsive to the needs of vulnerable communities. We are thrilled that Kristin will be on the front lines of this vital work and grateful to the Public Welfare Foundation for making the fellowship possible.”

Upsolve was founded by Rohan Pavuluri, a member of the Harvard College class of 2018, after Pavuluri worked with HLS’s Access to Justice Lab in 2016. Pavuluri developed the nonprofit through Harvard’s iLab, and last May, at a ceremony at the Harvard iLab, Upsolve won the Grand Prize in its category at the President’s Innovation Challenge, a competition started in 2012 that invites students across Harvard’s schools to submit ideas to solve “issues facing the world.”