New York, New York – October 19, 2017 – The International Trademark Association (INTA) today proudly announced the winners of its 2017 President’s and Volunteer Service Awards (VSAs).
The recipients of the President’s Award are Gerhard Bauer and Theodore (“Ted”) Davis, who have both made major contributions to INTA for decades and have served on the Board of Directors. INTA presents this prestigious honor annually to the most distinguished INTA volunteers for careers dedicated to trademarks and intellectual property (IP) protection and advancement, and contributions that have advanced INTA’s mission and made a lasting impact on the Association.
The Association has awarded the VSAs, in five categories, to INTA members who have gone beyond their regular duties as INTA volunteers in service of the Association and the broader public. Eligible recipients are INTA subcommittee chairs, committee members, and non-committee volunteers.
“It is a great honor to celebrate the achievements of our member volunteers. Their contributions advance INTA’s objectives and leave an enduring and positive impact on the global intellectual property community,” said INTA President Joseph Ferretti. “These deserving individuals have helped set a strong foundation for INTA’s next chapter, as we embark on a new committee term and the implementation of our 2018-2021 Strategic Plan. On behalf of all INTA’s members, I thank them for their hard work and dedication to our Association.”
The recipients will officially receive their awards at INTA’s annual Leadership Meeting in Washington, D.C., in early November.
2017 President’s Award Winner: Gerhard Bauer, IP Consultant (Stuttgart, Germany)
Gerhard Bauer has been an INTA member since 1998. He joined the Board of Directors in 2004 and served as INTA President in 2011. Mr. Bauer headed the search committee for INTA’s new CEO beginning in 2012, and was instrumental in INTA’s efforts to help Mexico and Colombia accede to the Madrid Protocol through his participation in numerous delegations and advocacy campaigns.
Over the years, Mr. Bauer has been active on many committees, including the Executive Committee, Finance Committee, Nominating Committee, and the 2008 Annual Meeting Project Team. INTA thanks Mr. Bauer for his leadership, passion, and tireless work for the Association. As one of his peers noted, he has been “an exceptional representative of INTA.”
2017 President’s Award Winner: Theodore (“Ted”) H. Davis, Jr., Partner, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP (Atlanta, Georgia, United States)
As a trademark attorney for 27 years and active in INTA since 1991, Ted Davis has had a profound influence on the Association and on U.S. trademark policy. His peers describe him as a legal icon, a terrific writer, and a tireless volunteer. Mr. Davis is best known for his work on The Trademark Reporter’s United States Annual Review, which he has co-authored for the past 17 years. He has also taken the lead in drafting a number of INTA’s amicus briefs, some of which were filed with the U.S. Supreme Court.
Mr. Davis has served on the Executive Board of INTA’s Board of Directors, as chair of the International Amicus Committee, Chair of the Famous and Well-Known Marks task force, and as a member of many other committees and task forces, including serving on the Editorial Board of The Trademark Reporter. INTA congratulates him for, as one member who nominated him said, “excelling in every capacity in which he has served.”
Advancement of Trademark Law: Jennifer Morton, Partner, Gowling WLG (Toronto, Canada)
Jennifer Morton serves as Chair of INTA’s Trademark Office Practices Committee, Canadian IP Office (CIPO) Subcommittee. In this role, she has made unparalleled progress in fostering a positive and productive working relationship with CIPO at a time when Canada is in the midst of adopting new legislation and regulations to accede to the Madrid, Singapore, and Nice treaties.
In just 30 days, Ms. Morton and her fellow subcommittee members compiled a 111-page response to Canada’s new draft Trademark Regulations on behalf of INTA. This work has helped pave the pathway for INTA’s continued engagement in the development of Canada’s trademark laws and regulations.
Advancement of Committee or Subcommittee: Jason Champion, Partner, Knobbe Martens LLP (Irvine, California, United States)
Jason Champion led the Young Practitioners Committee’s Tomorrow’s Leader Award Subcommittee that was responsible for the creation and introduction in 2017 of INTA’s Tomorrow’s Leader Award. Recognizing the need to attract and nurture future leaders for INTA, Mr. Champion brought a tremendous amount of passion to the project, building a team and drafting objectives to develop this new award. Thanks to his unwavering commitment over the past two years, INTA is able to present this inaugural award this year.
In advancing the objectives of his subcommittee during the 2016–2017 term, Mr. Champion’s efforts will serve to engage and motivate many INTA members in the future.
Advancement of the Association: Megan Bannigan, Counsel, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP (New York, New York, United States)
As Chair of the Pro Bono Committee’s Clearinghouse Implementation Subcommittee, Megan Bannigan was instrumental in the development and roll out of INTA’s Pro Bono Trademark Clearinghouse. Under her guidance, INTA established the clearinghouse pilot program to bolster the protection of IP by matching eligible clients in need of trademark legal services with INTA members who will provide these services free of charge.
Ms. Bannigan led her subcommittee through the development of the application criteria and evaluation process, as well as the review of the initial applicants for the pilot program. The launch of the Pro Bono Trademark Clearinghouse is a major accomplishment for INTA, providing trademark lawyers with the opportunity to enjoy the satisfaction of pro bono work, and eligible individuals and organizations with legal advice that they might not otherwise be able to obtain.
Pro Bono Services Provided by Individuals: Jaime Vining, Partner, Friedland Vining, P.A. (Miami, Florida, United States)
Jaime Vining has worked closely for many years with Dade Legal Aid, a nonprofit law firm that provides legal services for low-income children, teenagers, women, and families in Florida. Since 2010, she has played a pivotal role in implementing and organizing the firm’s “Patently Impossible Project,” which has raised more than $150,000 to provide legal representation in underserved communities. Ms. Vining has also participated in Dade Legal Aid’s Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts Program that offers pro bono legal consultations to local artists.
Pro Bono Services Provided by Organizations: Archer & Greiner, P.C. (Hackensack, New Jersey, United States)
Archer & Greiner, P.C., provided pro bono legal services in this year’s landmark U.S. Supreme Court case, Matal v. Tam. At issue was the trademark THE SLANTS, which musician Simon Shiao Tam and his Asian-American rock band sought to register. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) denied registration under the disparagement clause of Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed the USPTO’s refusal en banc. Archer & Greiner’s team of Joel MacMull, John Connell, and Ronald Coleman, successfully represented Tam before the U.S. Supreme Court; its 8-0 ruling affirmed the decision of the Federal Circuit that the ban on the registration of disparaging trademarks violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This case will undoubtedly have a lasting impact on U.S. trademark law.
The International Trademark Association (INTA) is the global association of trademark owners and professionals dedicated to supporting trademarks and related IP in order to protect consumers and to promote fair and effective commerce. Members include more than 7,000 trademark owners, professionals, and academics from more than 190 countries, who benefit from the Association’s global trademark resources, policy development, education, training, and international network. Founded in 1878, INTA is headquartered in New York City, with offices in Brussels, Santiago, Shanghai, Singapore, and Washington, D.C., and representatives in Geneva and New Delhi.