Sound is an innovator of bio-inspired chemistry and plant genetics. We leverage natural plant diversity to grow crops more sustainably and create differentiated, nutritious food. Sound is a Series C startup funded by leading investors in food and agriculture such as S2G Ventures, Fall Line Capital, Cultivian Sandbox Ventures, Cavallo Ventures and Syngenta Ventures. 

Sound is at a time of rapid change, with an increasing amount of complex international licensing agreements, financing opportunities, optimizing our route to market and growing our employee base. We are hiring a Head of Legal to lead all legal efforts as the first in-house role at Sound, including commercial agreements, financings, acquisitions, employment law, and aspects of intellectual property. The role reports to the Chief Administrative Officer.

Location: Company headquarters in Emeryville, CA.


  • Create and execute Sound’s legal strategy, including management of an annual budget
  • Draft and analyze various legal documents including NDAs, MTAs, commercial contracts, partnership agreements and IP transactions
  • Manage corporate documents, drafting Board resolutions and new securities filings as necessary
  • Manage and execute company privacy policy and terms of service
  • Aid CEO and the Business Development in high stakes negotiations, including multi-million dollar licensing agreements
  • Advise on personnel issues and potential employment conflicts
  • Advise and help execute potential acquisitions 
  • Develop and provide internal training on legal issues, processes and policies across departments
  • Lead complex legal projects that span legal, business, and functional boundaries
  • Manage multiple outside counsel across corporate and intellectual property law
  • Special projects and other duties, as needed

Skills & Experience

  • JD from a top tier law school with active bar membership, preferably in California
  • 5+ years of experience at an international firm and in-house at VC-backed startup
  • Passion for mission-based work, especially in sustainability in food and agriculture
  • Experience drafting and negotiating life science or agriculture licensing agreements, 
  • Experience advising company management and working with C‑Suite and corporate Boards
  • Strong analytical skills and demonstrated ability to understand complex legal concepts and analysis and translate those to non-lawyers to create practical processes, guidance and training
  • Demonstrable legal analytical skills, general business acumen and expertise in several of the core areas of work: Contract review and management in the US and in foreign jurisdictions; Employment law; Corporate governance; Enterprise wide risk mitigation; Intellectual property management and licensing
  • Strong project management skills with attention to detail and accuracy
  • Excellent writing skills
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a fast-paced, growth-oriented organization with strong bias to action
  • Comfort with ambiguity and the ability to work through challenging situations

Sound is based in Emeryville, CA and Research Triangle Park, NC, with a number of employees working remotely. We have a mission driven culture and a fast-paced, collaborative work environment. We are looking for someone to join the team who will bring a passion for sustainability along with a deep expertise in the business of food and agriculture.

Equal Employment Opportunity

We seek a diverse pool of applicants and consider all qualified candidates regardless of race, ancestry, color, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, citizenship, disability, Veteran status, marital status, or any other protected status.

To apply for this position, please send a resume and cover letter to careers-legal@sound.ag