Ryan J. Black — DLA Piper (Canada) LLP, Vancouver
About the Course Chair
Ryan Black is a partner practising technology-related business law, with a particular focus on intellectual property, information technology, video games and esports, and internet-facing businesses. As a former software and Internet developer, Ryan has a unique insight to emerging technology matters important to today's businesses, such as cybersecurity, blockchain technologies, artificial intelligence, open source software, deepfakes, cloud computing, and social media. Ryan is a frequent speaker and presenter on a wide variety of legal matters including Canada's Anti-Spam Law (CASL), video game law and policy matters, technology trends and regulations, and intellectual property issues, and is also the co-author of Internet Law Essentials: Canada's Anti-Spam Law, published by Specialty Technical Publishers. Ryan authored the 2017 update to that CASL book, focusing on CASL compliance.
Ryan is a member of the firm's National Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee. In 2017, Ryan was named as one of Canada's leading lawyers under 40 in Lexpert's annual Rising Stars edition, in 2019 he was named an Acritas Star for peer-recommended lawyers, and he has also been named a 2020-21 Best Lawyer in Canada for Information Technology Law, and a 2021 Best Lawyer in Canada for FinTech Practice and Privacy and Data Security Law. Ryan currently acts as Clinic Adjunct for the Centre for Business Law at the UBC Peter A. Allard School of Law, a director (and Chair, Governance) of the Canadian Internet Registration Authority, a director of the Vancouver Fireworks Festival Society, and a director of the Video Game Bar Association.
Morgan McDonald — DLA Piper (Canada) LLP, Vancouver
Michael E. Reid — DLA Piper (Canada) LLP, Vancouver
About the Faculty
Morgan McDonald is a business lawyer, practising corporate and commercial law with startup and growth companies. Morgan's practice is focused on assisting founders, startup and growth companies in the technology sector, including software, gaming, ecommerce and related technology facing businesses and emerging markets including artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and privacy.
Morgan has also been heavily involved in assisting clients in the emerging cannabis sector since inception and has helped companies navigate new regulation and rapid growth in the space. Regardless of the industry, Morgan provides value to new and repeat entrepreneurs using a business centric and practical approach to solving business and legal needs from incorporation through exit.
Morgan assists clients at early stages with long and short term planning in company formation and shareholder and founder agreements. As they grow, she assists clients with IP creation, commercialization, and management, go-to-market contract drafting and negotiation including development, licencing and subscription agreements, employment and contractor agreements and compensation plans, and ongoing contract review. As needs arise, Morgan assists companies and investors with debt and equity financing from friends and family and seed through series rounds and private equity and venture capital opportunities by negotiating and managing transactions from term sheet through close.
Morgan is active in the startup community, partnering as a mentor with a number of accelerators and incubators and speaking regularly to entrepreneurs and providing office hours.
Prior to earning her LLM from UBC, Morgan externed at the US District Court for the Central District of California and was called to the California State Bar.
Mike Reid is a corporate law generalist with a technology focus, often working with entrepreneurs, founders and other executives in startup and growth-stage companies.
Mike works with companies in a wide variety of sectors, from software to ecommerce, gaming to productivity tools, artificial intelligence to VR/AR, healthtech, fintech, consumer goods, food and beverage, life sciences and everything in between, at all stages of a company's life cycle from startup, through growth, to exit.
Mike is a trusted legal advisor, helping guide clients through their various corporate process and business issues. Specifically, he advises clients on corporate/commercial law including: company formations, such as structuring, shareholders agreements, and governance considerations; IP creation and commercialization; staffing concerns, such as employment and contractor matters; B2B and B2C contracting concerns; financing matters whether pre-seed, seed, series raises, private equity, venture capital or other strategic investments; and joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions.
Prior to practising law, Mike had a career in marketing and communications working for a wide range of clients. He brings to his legal practice a practical understanding of what is takes to grow successful business ventures in the modern economic landscape.
Mike has particular expertise advising startup companies and has written a number of articles providing tips, tools and programs for entrepreneurs and their startup ventures.