Intellectual Property Law

Christopher J. Forstner, Chair

The VSB IP section had a great year during the 2015-16 season.  The year was marked by several events including:

1.       The Annual Fall CLE Weekend event – The IP section planned and executed another great CLE meeting that was hosted in Alexandria, VA.  The CLE meeting featured presentations from Professor Chris Seaman (Washington and Lee Law School) on trade secrets, Brad Greenberg (U.S. Copyright Office) on ethical issues in copyright, Ed Good (Finnegan) on legal writing, and Laura Heymann (William and Mary Law School) on grey market goods, and Greg Richards (Commonwealth of Virginia) regarding Virginia’s anti-patent troll statute.  It also featured a panel on IPR proceedings filled by Justin Arbes, an administrative patent judge with the USPTO, and Bob Steinberg, of Latham & Watkins, and moderated by Chris Forstner, of Troutman Sanders.  The panel revealed several insights into the IPR process and offered views on the future impact that IPR proceedings would have on the patent system.  The CLE also featured a judge's panel led by Circuit Judge Pauline Newman of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Judge Liam O-Grady (EDVA), Judge John Anderson (EDVA) and Judge Grace Karaffa Obermann (USPTO). 

2.       The Spring CLE – The IP section hosted its first virtual Spring meeting.  Typically an ethics-focused presentation, Tom Spahn of McGuire Woods presented on intellectual property related ethics issues.  The session was attended by about 80 section members through a Virginia State Bar organized webcast.  The webcast was a great success and the section plans to use the functionality more in the future. 

3.       School meeting events – The IP section hosted two events at area law schools designed to bring more interaction between section members and aspiring law students that have an interest in intellectual property.  The first event was hosted at William and Mary Law School in conjunction with the school's annual Mervis Lecture.  Several section members met with and offered advice to a few dozen law students that attended the reception put on by the section.

The second event was hosted at University of Richmond Law School.  The section put on a reception following Professor Kristen Osenga's presentation on the impact of trademark law on wine labeling and marketing.  Again, several section members met with a number of IP focused law students and discussed the future of the IP profession.

4.       Annual meeting lunch – The final IP section event for the year occurred at the Virginia State Bar's annual meeting in Virginia Beach.  The section held its annual business meeting during the Friday lunch session.  Several section members met and Chris Forstner, section chair, presented a report on the prior year for the section.  Following the report, Mr. Forstner presented the slate of officers and directors put forward by the section's nominating committee.  The section members uniformly approved the slate of officers and directors, with Matt Osenga as the new section chair. 

Updated: Aug 02, 2016