Oregon State Bar Bulletin — JANUARY 2005


Re: A Matter of Degrees
In the Bulletin’s November 2004 article about attorneys with advanced science degrees, the only Ph.D. patent attorneys mentioned were from Seattle. This tends to perpetuate the unfortunate misimpression that Oregonians must go out of state to find the kind of expertise demanded by many Oregon technology clients.

The Klarquist Sparkman firm alone has seven Ph.D. patent attorneys in its Portland office. Other intellectual property specialty firms in Oregon have Ph.D. patent attorneys as well.

The article also presented the viewpoint that clients prefer to work with general practice firms instead of intellectual property specialty firms. The steady growth of the specialty firms such as ours (we have 47 attorneys in our Portland office) belies any such trend. Clients want to work with local specialty firms that have the breadth and depth of expertise that they need.

Although some general practice firms have opened small patent departments in recent years, many clients still appreciate the ease of working with a single firm (such as ours) that has patent attorneys and patent agents all in one place with doctorates in molecular biology, immunology, genetics, neuroscience, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, medicine, plant biology, physiology, microbiology and physics.

The Portland patent specialty firms attract major clients from all over the country who take advantage of their unusually high level of technical and legal expertise. The Bulletin readers should be pleased to know that they don’t have to go elsewhere to find such talent.

William D. Noonan, M.D.

Hurrah for Tent Show
The tent show pictures in the November Bulletin brought back memories from my first annual meeting in 1965 at Gearhart. One of the highlights was the tent show in which the cast was dominated by senior members of the bar.

The tent show pictures this year suggest that the cast is again dominated by senior members of the bar including old friends and colleagues, John Osburn, Mick Gillette, Ed Peterson, Skip Durham and Dennis Rawlinson. Good for the "old guys!"

James W. Durham
Past president, Oregon State Bar
Media, Penn.

Keep History Alive
Berkeley Crookham’s article, "Living History" (December 2004), presenting a biographical sketch of Judge Charles S. Crookham, was one of the best biographical pieces I have seen in many years in the bar Bulletin. It provided a wide range of information and gave the readers insight into the late great jurist.

I encourage you to present more such articles. May I suggest that each bar Bulletin edition should include a biographical sketch about a current sitting judge, and another about a senior or retired judge or an obituary piece about a recently deceased judge?

My own preference is to see these kinds of articles while the judge is still alive to help lawyers keep track of the living history among us.

Kevin L. Mannix

An article in the December 2004 Bulletin, "Putting It Together," misidentified the attorney representation in a case involving the Vernonia School District’s mandatory drug testing requirement for athletes. Attorney Tom Christ represented student athlete James Acton and his parents against the school district. Christ provided his services pro bono at the request of the ACLU. Tim Volpert, who was featured in the article, represented the Vernonia School District. Volpert says the case inspired him to begin volunteering to talk with students about the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as part of the Classroom Law Project and events such as Law Day. His pro bono service included speaking with students in middle and high schools, colleges and law schools about the constitutionality of school drug testing, among other issues. Volpert continues to work with students as the volunteer leader of Grant High School’s Constitution Team. The article also misspelled the firm name of Tonkon Torp. The Bulletin regrets the errors.

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