Attorney Anna Robinson Helps Launch Pro Bono Trademark Clearinghouse Pilot Program

Brooks Kushman associate Anna Robinson has been working for the past four years with the International Trademark Association (INTA) Pro Bono Committee to develop a new program that would benefit the trademark community on a global level. This program, called the Pro Bono Clearinghouse Pilot Program, allows INTA to work as an intermediary and help match low-income clients, and/or nonprofits or charitable organizations in need of trademark assistance with the INTA’s attorney members, acting on a pro bono basis.

The goal of the INTA Pro Bono Committee is to develop INTA into a primary resource for pro bono advocacy and activity in the trademark community on a global level. INTA is a leading global association for trademark owners and professionals, and has a far reach with members in more than 190 countries. The committee believes that with international participation, the new program will not only be an asset to the greater trademark community and lead to greater brand protection, but it will also be a conduit for sharing the many benefits associated with pro bono work to more INTA members.

At this time, the committee is focusing its resources on providing useful information to professionals in more than 70 countries. The Clearinghouse Pilot Program, currently being implemented in the US, will also soon be launched in Germany with the help of the INTA’s International Pro Bono team.

Robinson is the Client Communications Group Leader within the Communications Subcommittee. In her role, she helps lead outreach to potential pro bono clients. This involves creating correspondence designed to spread awareness and reach nonprofit organizations and individuals that qualify for INTA’s pro bono clearinghouse services. The subcommittee has also developed a database of contacts and organizations for outreach purposes. Currently, they are working on a social media presence and an educational presentation about trademarks and the Clearinghouse.

Robinson’s practice focuses on the clearance, filing, maintenance and enforcement of trademark rights and copyright protection and enforcement work. It also involves trade dress, internet and entertainment law. Robinson has diverse experience managing client portfolios, providing clearance opinions, devising filing strategies, negotiating agreements and defending intellectual property rights. Robinson also remains dedicated to the State Bar of Michigan, Arts Communications Entertainment & Sports Section and has done so since she was in law school. She is also committed to helping artists and those in the creative sector protect and promote their intellectual property, and was recognized by Michigan Lawyers Weekly as a “2016 Up & Coming Lawyer” for her professional success and commitment to pro bono work.


About Brooks Kushman P.C.
Brooks Kushman P.C. is a leading intellectual property (IP) and technology law firm with offices across the nation, and represents clients nationally and internationally with respect to protection, enforcement and monetization of IP, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. The firm has more than 90 intellectual property professionals specializing in various technical disciplines, and has a reputation for providing leading IP counseling with a focus on the business objectives of their clients.

Brooks Kushman counts a number of Fortune 100 companies across a variety of industries among its clients. The firm is also recognized by leading legal publications and rankings, including Corporate Counsel magazine, U.S. News & World Report, Law360, Intellectual Asset Management, Managing Intellectual Property, and Intellectual Property Today. For more information, please visit www.BrooksKushman.com

Miller Canfield Hires Wendy Richards to Lead, Expand Pro Bono Practice

Miller Canfield, a global law firm headquartered in Detroit, is pleased to announce that Wendolyn Wrosch Richards has rejoined the firm in the role of Pro Bono Counsel. Richards’ role is a new position in the firm.
The announcement was made by CEO Michael McGee.

“The creation of the Pro Bono Counsel position is a reflection of Miller Canfield’s serious commitment to supporting pro bono services, and our investment in the communities where we work and live,” McGee said. “During the past year, the firm has contributed more than $1.8 million to pro bono endeavors, including the more than 5,000 hours of pro bono services our attorneys have performed. Under Wendy’s leadership, we can do even more.”

Richards previously worked as a senior litigation attorney, spending nine years working on numerous multimillion-dollar actions involving securities, intellectual property and general complex litigation.
In 2013, she left the firm to work for a Michigan nonprofit focused on improving communities through pro bono legal and technical services to nonprofits. There she helped launch the Small Business Legal Academy Detroit and led initiatives to develop community support for fundraising and entrepreneurship in underserved areas.

She is active in professional and civic groups such as the State Bar of Michigan Justice Initiative, Pro Bono Initiative Committee, New Economy Initiative’s Neighborhood Business Initiative Worktable and Greening of Detroit Policy and Advocacy Committee.

In addition to her work as pro bono counsel at Miller Canfield, Richards will also work in the firm’s Litigation and Dispute Resolution group.

Brooks Kushman Of Counsel David C. Berry featured in Crain’s Detroit Business

Brooks Kushman Of Counsel David C. Berry was featured in Crain’s Detroit Business’ August 21, 2016 article “Pro bono IP work a growing service.”

In the article, Berry discusses the increase in intellectual property pro bono services available to low-income inventors and innovators in Michigan.

“There’s always been pro bono (IP) activities, but it flies under the radar,” Berry said. “There isn’t the established legal aid network like other areas of law, but IP is important to building new inventors and innovations.”

Berry has over 25 years of intellectual property experience, focusing on a variety of IP matters including patents, license agreements, litigation and trade secrets. He represents clients ranging from Fortune 100 companies to smaller privately-held companies. David is the Chair of the State Bar of Michigan Intellectual Property Law Section, the Chair of the Michigan Patent Pro Bono Project steering committee, and is an adjunct professor for Wayne State University Law School’s patent procurement clinic.

Brooks Kushman Of Counsel Discusses IP Pro Bono Resources in Michigan Bar Journal

Brooks Kushman Of Counsel David C. Berry was featured in the Michigan Bar Journal’s February article, “New Pro Bono Opportunities for Michigan Intellectual Property Attorneys.”

The article discusses a variety of opportunities for Michigan intellectual property attorneys to offer pro bono legal services. There are a number of opportunities and organizations that help IP attorneys in the state find pro bono projects that are relevant to their practice, including the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s pro bono program, the Michigan Patent Pro Bono Project and Creative Many Michigan’s Lawyers for the Creative Economy program. Brooks Kushman attorneys participate as volunteers in all three programs.

According to the article, “In reality, the need for pro bono representation is as important in IP matters as in other legal issues. Low-income and under-resourced inventors, micro-entrepreneurs, artists, art organizations and other innovators and creative producers are an important part of the fabric of Michigan’s cultural environment and community identity.”

Berry focuses his practice on patent litigation and intellectual property law in the business sector. He chairs the Steering Committee of the Michigan Patent Pro Bono Project, a regional pro bono resource created pursuant to the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act and also serves as a faculty member of the Patent Resources Group (PRG), a leading provider of legal education programs specializing in patent and intellectual property law.

Brooks Kushman Attorneys Named to INTA Committees

Southfield, Mich. –Brooks Kushman attorneys Jennifer K. Ziegler, Hope V. Shovein, Laura E. Schwartz and Anna K. Heinl have been chosen to serve two-year terms on International Trademark Association (INTA) committees.

Their committees are:
Jennifer Ziegler – UNREAL Campaign Committee (Educational campaign educating teens on the dangers of counterfeits.)
Hope Shovein – Internet Committee
Laura Schwartz – Building Bridges Committee
Anna Heinl – Pro Bono Committee

“Having four of our attorneys selected to serve on INTA committees shows the respect they have earned among the leaders of the international IP community,” said Elizabeth Janda, Cahair of Brooks Kushman President Mark Cantortrademark group. “These committees influence the protection, development and respect for trademarks, brands and related intellectual property around the world and we are proud of our attorneys who will be supporting those efforts.”

INTA is the global association of trademark owners and professionals dedicated to supporting trademarks and related intellectual property in order to protect consumers and to promote fair and effective commerce.

About Brooks Kushman P.C.
Brooks Kushman P.C. is a leading intellectual property (IP) and technology law firm with offices in Michigan and California, and represents clients nationally and internationally with respect to protection, enforcement and monetization of IP, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. The firm has more than 90 intellectual property professionals specializing in various technical disciplines, and has a reputation for providing leading IP counseling with a focus on the business objectives of their clients.

Brooks Kushman counts a number of Fortune 100 companies across a variety of industries among its clients. The firm is also recognized by leading legal publications and rankings, including Corporate Counsel magazine, U.S. News & World Report, Law360, Intellectual Asset Management, Managing Intellectual Property, and Intellectual Property Today. For more information, please visit www.BrooksKushman.com.

Dickinson Wright Attorney Kristi Katsma to Receive the Pro Bono Spirit Award at the 2014 Laddy Awards

DETROIT, Mich., October 27, 2014 – Dickinson Wright PLLC is pleased to announce that Attorney Kristi Katsma will receive the Pro Bono Spirit Award at the 2014 Laddy Awards presented by the Legal Aid and Defender Association, Inc. (LAD). Ms. Katsma is one of three recipients of the Pro Bono Spirit Award this year.

Ms. Katsma is being honored for her work representing an elderly client in a Detroit property tax dispute. The client received notice of tax foreclosure by the City of Detroit when the City claimed it could significantly raise the property taxes in arrears due to the transfer of the property solely into the client’s name upon her partner’s death. The client otherwise qualified for the poverty exception to payment of property taxes but had not previously applied. The matter involved an appeal to the Michigan Tax Tribunal and substantial negotiations to resolve this matter on behalf of her client. The result of her work, which included approximately 55 hours of pro bono work, ensured that this client could continue to live in her home.

Ms. Katsma is a Member in Dickinson Wright’s Detroit office. She focuses her practice in the areas of bankruptcy, restructuring & creditors’ rights; automotive litigation; banking & financial services; mergers & acquisitions; and commercial transactions. She is a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and served as a past Board Member of the Washtenaw County Bar Association and Past President of the Washtenaw County Young Lawyers Association. Ms. Katsma received her B.S. from Western Michigan University and her J.D. from University of Michigan Law School.

Ms. Katsma, along with the other honorees, will receive her award at a ceremony on Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at the historic chief judge’s courtroom of the Theodore Levin United States Courthouse. Dickinson Wright is also honored to be a sponsor of this great event that honors members of the legal community for their pro bono efforts to LAD clients.

About Dickinson Wright PLLC
Dickinson Wright PLLC is a full-service law firm with more than 40 practice areas. Founded in 1878, Dickinson Wright PLLC has over 360 lawyers in offices located in Detroit, Troy, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor, Lansing, and Saginaw, Mich.; Columbus, Ohio; Las Vegas, Nev.; Nashville, Tenn.; Phoenix, Ariz.; and Washington, D.C. Dickinson Wright LLP has over 35 lawyers in Toronto, Canada.