Volunteer Spotlight: Kathleen McCarthy

Published: September 15, 2018

Ken Taylor Com Laude McLean, Virginia, USA

Kathleen (Katie) McCarthy grew up in Syracuse, New York, but has lived in New York City since 1983. She is currently a partner with the law firm King & Spalding in New York City. “Aside from a year spent backpacking around the world,” she said, “I’ve been in private practice and focused on trademarks since 1988.”

The first INTA Annual Meeting Katie attended was in Orlando, Florida, in 1995. She remembers it distinctly “because I was pregnant and determined that pregnancy and INTA don’t go well together, especially when it’s held at an amusement park and you can’t go on any rides!” Twenty-one years later, Katie was pleased to bring her son, a recent college graduate, to the 138th Annual Meeting in Barcelona, Spain.

Katie’s committee work over the years has centered around The Trademark Reporter (TMR). She recently finished her term as Committee Chair/Editor-In-Chief of the TMR and says that she not only learned a lot by reading and editing articles, but “found it heartening to see firsthand the hard work that INTA staff, the committee members, and authors put in to publishing the journal year in and year out.”

Her favorite trademark is from a now defunct business: McCarthy’s Seafood House, which was the name of a venerable Syracuse establishment started by her great-grandfather in 1873, “and run into the ground by my father about 100 years later.” She explains that likely occurred because her father “was on the wrong side of history and would not serve women at the bar.” But she adds that her father was also trying to run the business while going to law school, raising seven kids, and coaching little league. Katie points out that, aside from the surname McCarthy being “a good one to have as a trademark attorney,” “McCarthy’s” has acquired secondary meaning via a slogan on old menus (still sold on eBay): “Without a doubt your grandfather ate at McCarthy’s in the good old days.”

When she’s not advising clients, or making up for lost time on roller coasters, Katie enjoys spending time with family, which includes regular dinners with her siblings, who all live in the New York City neighborhood of Astoria, Queens.

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