Jackie Ewenstein, Partner
For almost two decades Ms. Ewenstein has provided legal advice to nonprofit organizations and social entrepreneurs on issues related to tax-exempt status, governance, and general corporate and intellectual property matters. At Ewenstein & Roth, she advises a wide range of organizations, from small family foundations to large multinational public charities, on both individual projects and on-going matters. She frequently works with start-up organizations, helping to secure tax-exempt status and shape legal strategies for new and innovative initiatives. (However, her first client at the firm was a nonprofit founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1743!) She has been instrumental in developing the firm’s expertise in the intersection between nonprofit and intellectual property laws, and frequently provides counsel to organizations engaged in scholarly communication, digital publishing, documentary film, and the creation of digital archives on tax-exempt issues as well as the licensing and distribution of intellectual property under both fee-based and open access arrangements.
Prior to co-founding Ewenstein & Roth, Ms. Ewenstein was the Assistant General Counsel of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, one of the largest private grant-making foundations in the United States. In that capacity, she provided legal analysis and guidance to the Board of Trustees, management and program staff on all aspects of the Foundation’s operations, including grant-making and research programs, employee benefits, investments, and intellectual property matters, and drafted and negotiated a broad range of contracts for the Foundation. From her work at The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Ms. Ewenstein brings to the firm an expertise in the legal aspects of domestic and international grant-making from both the donor and grantee perspective. At Ewenstein & Roth, she has also worked with the Mellon President Emeritus on a variety of initiatives related to strengthening and improving elementary and higher education, and the use of technology in higher education.
Prior to her work at The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Ms. Ewenstein was an associate at Debevoise & Plimpton in the corporate and intellectual property departments, drafting and negotiating merger, joint venture and licensing agreements and advising on copyright and trademark matters. Ms. Ewenstein also participated in the firm’s trusts and estates practice, serving as counsel to a variety of private foundations, operating foundations and public charities engaged in grant-making activities, program-related investments, and the operation of charitable programs.
Ms. Ewenstein graduated from Harvard College (AB 1987) and Columbia University School of Law (J.D. 1998). She is the recipient of prizes from the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers, the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC), and the New York Intellectual Property Law Association for her written work on copyright issues. She serves on the board of the Y.H. Mirzoeff & Sons Foundation, the advsisory board of the Kernochan Center for Law & the Arts at Columbia Law School, the New York City Bar Association Committee on Nonprofit Organizations, and the Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York’s Government Relations Committee. She is a past director of Room to Grow New York, Inc.
Ms. Ewenstein is admitted to practice in New York.