Austin – Global law firm K&L Gates LLP has added Chris Graff as a partner in the intellectual property (IP) procurement and portfolio management practice. Graff joins the firm’s Austin office from IP firm Pirkey Barber PLLC.
Graff focuses on the areas of trademarks, brand management, false advertising, unfair competition, and copyrights. He advises clients on global brand protection, clearance, enforcement, licensing, and portfolio management. Graff has worked with many iconic brands, and has represented clients in more than 100 cases before a wide variety of courts and tribunals, including federal and state courts and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board.
Bob Barrett, a co-leader of K&L Gates’ intellectual property practice area, commented: “We’re excited to have Chris and his team join the firm’s IP practice. Their deep knowledge of global trademark and branding issues strengthens our already cutting-edge practice. Moreover, their addition will buttress our burgeoning IP practice in Austin.”
Graff’s arrival closely follows the September additions of IP litigator Jeff Gargano and privacy practitioner Whitney McCollum in the Chicago and Seattle offices, respectively, as well as a number of other IP partners to the firm this year, including Patrick Sands in Melbourne, Brenna Legaard in Portland, and a team of IP lawyers in Japan, with the firm also having enhanced its global trademark capabilities through the launch of the K&L Gates IP Agency in China. They are among the more than 95 partners and of counsel the firm has welcomed across its platform since the beginning of 2020, including both health care partner Andrea Cunha and government affairs advisor Skylor Hearn in the firm’s Austin office. In 2019, K&L Gates’ Austin office also welcomed a team of four IP lawyers led by partner Stewart Mesher.
“We are excited to have Chris and his team join us as we continue to strategically grow the office to serve clients locally and globally,” said Jack Erskine, managing partner of K&L Gates’ Austin office.
K&L Gates’ IP practice has more than 200 lawyers and professionals – including approximately 100 registered patent lawyers, agents, and technology specialists with technical or advanced science degrees, nearly 20 with doctorates – who devote their practices to helping clients establish, enforce, and leverage their intellectual property rights worldwide. K&L Gates is the only globally financially integrated firm that can offer IP services across four continents.