their hands or pass notes with questions during court proceedings. “You won’t find that in your average criminal or civil trial,” she quips.
Some of Barner’s other career benchmarks include securing a $154 million patent damage award for Hughes Aircraft Co. from the United States for infringement of satellite-stabilizing technology. The award was one of the largest judgments against the U.S. government.
She was also recently named national chair of Foley & Lardner’s Intellectual Property Litigation Group and became the first African American to sit on the firm’s 14-member executive committee.
Barner’s first love was science. She received a B.S. in psychology with a focus on biology from Syracuse University in 1979. But her career path took a turn when she decided to attend the University of Michigan Law School. As an intellectual property attorney, Barner has been able to marry the two disciplines she loves.
It’s no wonder her face lights up when she speaks of the key strategy in trying technology cases: getting clients to break down the information “as if they were science teachers talking to a room of fifth graders.” Barner even goes the extra mile by using video and computer animation in the courtroom. But it’s not just about schooling people, she says, it’s about winning cases.
— Daniel BrownJames W. Cannon Jr.
Career Highlights: A former air defense artillery officer in the U.S. Army, Cannon handles patent and copyright infringement and trade secret theft. The University of Texas Law School graduate has represented and taken action against high-tech giants such as Motorola and Microsoft, respectively.
Power Play: Cannon was involved in several landmark patent infringement suits: Rambus v. Infineon and Micron v. Rambus, a $300 million patent infringement action and a $50 million trade secret theft case on behalf of semiconductors and integrated electronic systems manufacturers.
Melvin C. Garner
Darby & Darby
New York, NY
Career Highlights: Garner oversees the procurement and litigation of patent, trademark, trade secret, and copyright matters. Garner, who holds a master’s in engineering from NYU and a J.D. from Brooklyn Law School, is the New York Intellectual Property Law Association’s first African American vice president. In 2005, he’ll become the organization’s first African American president.
Power Play: Garner represented O.P. Solutions in O.P. Solutions Inc. v. Intellectual Property Network Ltd., which upheld copyright protection for computer software.
Philip G. Hampton II
Gardner Carton & Douglas
Career Highlights: A member of the firm’s technology department, Hampton specializes in patent litigation, trademark prosecution, and intellectual property licensing. A graduate of MIT and University of Chicago Law School, Hampton served as assistant commissioner for trademarks at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office under the Clinton administration.
Power Play: Hampton re-engineered the trademark registration process and changed the rules and policies of the Trademark Office with respect to the Lanham Act through a series of cases, helping to relieve trademark applicants of an unnecessary burden.
LABOR & EMPLOYMENT
Marilyn J. Holifield
Holland & Knight
Career Highlights: Holifield’s area of litigation encompasses class action lawsuits, employment, and covenants-not-to-compete. For five years, Holifield was an assistant