Seattle – Global law firm K&L Gates LLP has added Whitney McCollum as a privacy partner in the technology transactions, privacy, and sourcing practice. McCollum joins the firm’s Seattle office from multinational engineering firm AECOM, where she served as vice president, assistant general counsel, and chief IP and data protection counsel. She is the latest in a series of recent additions to the firm’s technology transactions and privacy practice, including Seattle associate Jane Petoskey in August and Seattle partner Jake Bernstein in May, among others. They join more than 20 lawyers across the firm’s technology transactions practice with privacy experience, along with other privacy practitioners in K&L Gates’ litigation, financial services, and health care practices.
Bob Barrett, a co-leader of K&L Gates’ intellectual property practice area, said: “We’re pleased to continue strengthening our firm’s privacy team through the additions of Whitney, Jake, and Jane in Seattle. Their arrivals are yet one more way – along with, for example, the recent establishment of the K&L Gates IP Agency in China and addition of a Japanese IP team in July – that K&L Gates has been able to expand our intellectual property and technology transactions/privacy offerings for current and future clients.”
At AECOM, McCollum was responsible for the company’s global data protection and privacy, including building a compliance infrastructure serving more than 50 countries; global technology and intellectual property; and advising on corporate structure and transactions. Her privacy experience includes COVID-related areas such as employee screening, testing, and data tracking and global return-to-work planning. She also oversaw internal investigations involving security matters throughout the world during her five years with the company.
Prior to joining AECOM, McCollum served as corporate counsel for Renesas Electronics America Inc., where she was lead intellectual property counsel and advised on a wide range of IP issues, including IP protection and portfolio management, licensing, and open source as well as commercial contracts and marketing/sweepstakes.
McCollum will focus her practice at K&L Gates on the creation and management of global privacy and data protection programs, including compliance with California Consumer Privacy Act and General Data Protection Regulation, product counseling, security and incident response, and commercial and corporate transactions involving data transfers. She will also counsel on IP matters such as licensing, IP protections, IP portfolio management, contract negotiations, and innovation risk management, including artificial intelligence, IOT, and open source use.
“We are delighted to welcome Whitney to K&L Gates, where her combination of in-house and private practice experience in global privacy, intellectual property, and other areas will be of great benefit to the firm and our clients,” stated Pallavi Wahi, managing partner of K&L Gates’ Seattle office and co-managing partner, United States. “Following the additions of Jake (Bernstein) this spring and Jane (Petoskey) last month, Whitney’s arrival allows us to even better serve the privacy and innovation needs of clients in Seattle as well as throughout the world.”
Petoskey arrives from Polsinelli PC. McCollum is among nearly 95 new partners and of counsel who have joined K&L Gates since the beginning of 2020.
K&L Gates’ technology transactions, privacy, and sourcing practice assists clients in dealing with a broad range of data privacy and security issues, including compliance, assessing risk, incident response, breach, and crisis counseling globally, as well as advising on the various aspects of technology transactions and IP licensing; software, hardware, and cloud services; complex software platforms; and participation in technology standards organizations.