What’s New

New Generations of Trademark Lawyers Battle Over Wine and Beer Brands

Four past and present OWE attorneys recently judged spirited arguments at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco from law student advocates about whether beer and wine are related goods under US trademark law.  The California-themed problem pitted HOLLYWOOD HOPS for beer against HOLLYWOOD & VINE for wine. The foam flew and corks popped as the students and judges matched wits over the facts and law.

Hosted by INTA, the International Trademark Association, the Saul Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition is a prestigious, nationally-recognized annual event, with law school teams throughout the country participating in a series of regional competitions leading to a national final.  The competition introduces law students to important issues arising in U.S. trademark and unfair competition law. Students develop their brief writing and oral advocacy skills in a mock courtroom experience.

OWE’s John C. Baum, past national chair of INTA’s Lefkowitz Committee, was on the scene as one of the judges at this year’s West Coast regional competition, which was held in San Francisco on February 10, 2018.  Teams participated from Golden Gate University School of Law, Gonzaga University School of Law, University of Santa Clara School of Law, Berkeley Law, UC Hastings School of Law, McGeorge School of Law, and University of San Francisco School of Law.

Over the years, many of OWE’s experienced attorneys have served as judges for the competition.  In addition to John Baum, who’s been involved for more than a quarter century, this year’s competition for the first time ever included three recent former OWE associate attorneys as judges – Alica Del Valle, Senior Marketing & IP Counsel at Airbnb, Lindsey Furtado, IP Counsel at Square, and Eric Gelwicks, Manager of Legal and Business Affairs at Live Nation.  They are all leaders in the next generation of trademark law specialists, with roots starting at OWE.

The winners of the West Region – North were UC Berkeley School of Law, Boalt Hall and UC Hastings School of Law.  Both teams advanced to the national finals on March 17, 2018, at the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C., where the Boalt Hall team came in second nationwide. 

Boalt Hall also won the award for the Best Brief submitted among all teams in the country.  That award is named in honor of Dolores Hanna, who passed away this year.  Dolores Hanna founded the Lefkowitz competition nearly thirty years ago, was a trailblazer among women lawyers in the trademark field, and profoundly influenced the lives and careers of many.

     2017/2018 National Finals Winners

  • Winning Team: Chicago-Kent College of Law, IIT (Brittany Kaplan and Evan Kline-Wedeen) 
  • Second Place Team:University of California Berkeley School of Law (Thao Thai and Kelsey Schuetz) 
  • Dolores K. Hanna Best Brief Award:University of California Berkeley School of Law 
  • Second Place Brief: Chicago-Kent College of Law, IIT (Brittany Kaplan and Evan Kline-Wedeen)
  • Best Oral Argument: Chicago-Kent College of Law, IIT (Brittany Kaplan and Evan Kline-Wedeen)
  • Second Place Oral Argument Team: University of California Los Angeles School of Law (Aidan Welsh and Julia Markham-Cameron) 

See All Posts