Susan Natland, Sr. Partner Knobbe Martens

Susan Natland, Sr. Partner, Knobbe Martens
I’d never given much thought to intellectual property law until one of our investment portfolio companies ran into lawsuits by trademark trolls. I’ve since learned about the subtle nuance of protecting and defending your ideas. Susan Natland is a partner at Knobbe Martens, a law firm specializing in intellectual property and also serves as Vice Chair of the USPTO Trademark Advisory Committee and we had a fantastic chat about staying true to yourself.

Susan and I met each other through our husbands. We played a round of golf way back when and have since connected around social settings and discussions about our businesses and careers. 

What’s interesting to me is that I didn’t realize what a powerhouse she was in the world of IP law until about 10 years ago. She’s confident and humble, but it was her husband who told me about the roles she had landed as “side hustles.” You know…teaching at UCLA Law School, serving our country on the USPTO Trademark Trademark Public Advisory Committee as Vice Chair. NOT small potatoes kind of gigs! 

Another common thread that I’ve gleaned from my leadership podcast guests is that many of them include a solid workout in their daily routines. I often see Susan at yoga and pilates and she’s energized and ready to start her day!

On this episode of MENTOR dna, we discuss the importance of being true to yourself and advocating for what you feel you deserve. She also tells a story about her first Chinese factory raid to shut down illegal hand bag manufacturing. Fascinating!

About Susan Natland

Susan Natland is a senior partner in the Orange County office of Knobbe Martens and has been practicing IP law for over 20 years.  As Co-Chair of the firm’s Brand Protection Group and Chair of the firm’s Data Privacy and Security Group, Susan had led a career advising start-ups to Fortune 100 companies on all aspects of domestic and international brand protection, advertising law, copyright law, and data privacy and security matters. Her passion is mentoring others and building strong teams who share her business approach to the law in providing clear, concise and practical advice and success in achieving results for her clients. Her clients view her as a true trusted business partner and have honoured her for many years with the “Client Choice” award.  Susan has also taught advanced Trademark Law at her alma mater UCLA Law, and was seconded as trademark counsel for one of the biggest technology and e-commerce companies in the world for several years, helping guide business decisions and policy. Susan has served on her firm’s Executive Committee and Diversity Committee and was recently appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to serve as Vice-Chair of the USPTO Trademark Public Advisory Committee (TPAC).

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Failing to prepare is preparing to fail. John Wooden

Susan Natland, Sr. Partner Knobbe Martens