Robert Nichols, ESQ.
Attorney Robert (“Bob”) Nichols is the proud parent of three children who were conceived through the assistance of an egg donor and surrogate mother. Bob graduated from Cornell University in 1987 and received his Juris Doctor from Boston College Law School in 1993. He has been specializing in reproductive law since 1999, when he began matching intended parents with egg donors and gestational carriers, as well as providing legal services. The services have expanded into the formation of a separate surrogacy and egg donation agency, the Center For Surrogacy and Egg Donation, Inc., of which Attorney Nichols is the founder and president.
Attorney Nichols is a member of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine and has been a faculty presenter for the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education on Reproductive Technology and Adoption Law. He is also a regular speaker at the Resolve of New England annual conference and other presentations throughout the year.
Attorney Nichols has extensive experience representing intended parents, surrogates and egg donors in the drafting and negotiation of gestational carrier and egg donor agreements. He also assists intended parents in obtaining parentage orders declaring their parental rights to their child being carried by a gestational carrier. He obtained a pre-birth order for a same-sex couple in Massachusetts that resulted in the first original birth certificate with two men listed as the parents.
Together with Attorney DeLisle, Bob advocated on behalf of the families of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to have the first-of-its-kind legislation filed in the Massachusetts State Senate defining the rights of parents and children resulting from assisted reproductive technologies.
He also has significant experience working with international intended parents who come to the U.S. to have a child through surrogacy and/or egg donation and has partnered with attorneys in many countries, including Italy, the U.K., Canada, France, Germany, China and others, to help ensure that the immigration and citizenship issues surrounding surrogacy in the U.S. are addressed in the beginning the surrogacy process.
kathleen delisle, esq.
Attorney DeLisle graduated from Boston College in 1991 and received her Juris Doctor from New England School of Law in 1997. Kathleen has more than 15 years experience in reproductive law, with particular expertise representing intended parents, egg donors and sperm donors in the drafting and negotiation of both anonymous and known donor contracts, as well as embryo donation contracts. Attorney DeLisle also has extensive experience representing intended parents and surrogates in gestational carrier agreements and in the establishment of legal parentage through the of Pre-Birth Order process.
Attorney DeLisle also has more than 22 years experience in the field of adoption law. Prior to joining the firm, Kathleen was an Assistant Regional Counsel for the Department of Social Services (now Department of Children and Families), where she handled hundreds of adoptions over her 7-year tenure. She was a recipient of a Performance Recognition Award for Outstanding Service to the Children and Families of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, as nominated by her clients, peers and supervisors.
Attorney DeLisle is licensed in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. Attorney DeLisle is a Fellow of the Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys (AAARTA), where she is a member of their Legislative Committee. Together with Attorney Nichols, Kathleen advocated on behalf of the families of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to have the first-of-its-kind legislation filed in the Massachusetts State Senate defining the rights of parents and children resulting from assisted reproductive technologies. She is a member of the Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine Bar Associations and is regularly asked to speak on legal issues with assisted reproductive technologies for various groups, organizations and conferences. Kathleen is also a contributing author to the 2017 edition of Adoption and Reproductive Technology Law in Massachusetts.
Kathleen lives in Groveland, Massachusetts with her husband, 2 daughters and black labrador. When not traveling the globe, she spends time in her garden and cheering on her daughters as they race down the slopes.
leslie lightholder, esq.
Attorney Leslie Lightholder has specialized in reproductive law since 2006, and is licensed to practice in both Massachusetts and Connecticut. She has extensive experience drafting and negotiating gestational carrier agreements, representing both intended parents and carriers. Licensed in two jurisdictions, Leslie routinely obtains Pre-Birth Orders for clients and appears in both the Massachusetts Probate & Family Court, and also in the Family Division of the Connecticut Superior Courts. Leslie’s practice often involves complicated international surrogacy arrangements during which she collaborates with attorneys in her clients’ home countries to assist in establishing their legal rights as parents both in the U.S. and abroad. She also has many years of experience advising intended parents on insurance coverage for a surrogate pregnancy. Leslie’s experience, combined with her contacts on both the professional and judicial side of reproductive law gives her clients the best possible advantage. Her attention to detail and deep understanding and appreciation of the human elements involved are what separate Leslie from her peers.
Attorney Lightholder graduated from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1998, and received her Juris Doctor, magna cum laude, from Western New England University School of Law in 2001. After being admitted to both the Massachusetts and Connecticut bar, Leslie began her legal career serving as a Judicial Law Clerk, providing legal research and draft decisions to the judges then presiding in the Massachusetts Juvenile and Probate and Family Courts. She also served for a year as an Assistant Clerk running the Magistrate Court Sessions in the Windham Judicial District of the Connecticut Superior Court. Leslie’s time spent in these courts helps to give her practice a practical and realistic perspective on the law. Leslie joined the firm in 2006, and since then has exclusively practiced reproductive law, with a particular focus on gestational carrier agreements and parentage orders. In 2012, Leslie was named a Partner in the firm. Most recently, she was invited to author a chapter on surrogacy and gestational carrier arrangements in the 2017 edition of the MCLE (Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education) book: Adoption and Reproductive Technology Law in Massachusetts, which is currently pending publication.
Outside of the office, Leslie and her husband happily have their hands full with their their three children, which includes a set of boy/girl twins, and 2 cats. When not rushing the kids to a dance rehearsal, gymnastics, taekwondo, or to the soccer field, Leslie enjoys baking, watching movies, binge watching TV drama series, and starting knitting projects.
MICHAEL J. ST. ANDRÉ, esq.
Attorney St. André is an adoption and reproductive law attorney focusing on assisting clients in the journey to become a family. Michael is the proud father of three children who joined his family through adoption and has first-hand experience with the devastation of infertility, adoption, open adoption and assisted reproductive technology (ART) options. Michael’s practice includes representing intended adoptive parents, birth mothers and adoption agencies in domestic agency adoptions, second or co-parent adoptions, adoption for non-traditional families, open adoption agreements and assisting parents on all aspects of the adoption process, from choosing the appropriate agency through adoption finalization. Michael also has extensive experience representing intended parents and gestational carriers in drafting and negotiating gestational carrier agreements and egg donor agreements and obtaining pre-birth parentage orders. Michael further advises clients on insurance coverage issues relating to ART and works with clients to prepare wills and estate planning documents. Michael welcomes the opportunity to share his story and counsel those seeking guidance on family building.
Attorney St. André graduated from Michigan State University in 1992 and Suffolk University Law School, Cum Laude, in 1995. Michael is admitted to practice law in Massachusetts and Connecticut, as well as the United States District Court for the Districts of Massachusetts and Connecticut. In 2010, the Super Lawyers edition of Boston Magazine named Michael as a Rising Star, recognizing him as one of the top 2.5% of Massachusetts lawyers under the age of 40.
Attorney St. André is an active professional member at Resolve New England and speaks on adoption topics and infertility at the annual conference and panel events throughout the year. He routinely speaks at local adoption agencies and volunteers his time assisting couples struggling with infertility. Michael is a member of the American Bar Association, Adoption and Assisted Reproductive Technology Sections, The Adoption Community of New England (ACONE), the Massachusetts and Worcester County Bar Associations, and the Connecticut Bar Association. Michael is a resident of Southborough, Massachusetts and, when not spending time with his beloved family, actively participates in community and charitable events.