Mary L. Shapiro

Founder & Managing Director, Mary L. Shapiro Law

Mary Shapiro is the founder and Managing Director of Mary L. Shapiro Law, PC, a small firm focused on trademark and copyright law, and how these areas of law intersect with digital technologies.

She started her law firm in the heart of San Francisco’s Financial District in 2009 after ten years at the renowned firm Townsend and Townsend and Crew, LLP. At Townsend and Townsend and Crew, then the West’s largest dedicated intellectual property firm, Mary developed extensive experience in counseling, clearance, filing, prosecution, enforcement and dispute resolution. After a decade at a prestigious firm, she tapped into her business experience to launch Mary L. Shapiro Law. Now, as an independent trademark and copyright lawyer, Mary counsels a broad range of clients in owning, enforcing, protecting and profiting from their intellectual property. True to her founding mission of providing practical and affordable intellectual property legal counsel, she simultaneously adds real business value (rather than merely creating legal expenses) for private and public companies alike.

In the first 20 years of her business career, Mary worked her way up in the publishing world from book retailing to publishing, and rose to vice president of marketing and corporate communications for an international book distributor. At the time, as a purveyor, not yet a protector, of intellectual property, Mary was on the receiving end of intellectual property legal advice. She learned to challenge advice that didn’t square with her fixed marketing budget and the bigger business picture. And, she’s been the unfortunate recipient of an IP lawyer’s demand letter that ultimately led to rebranding and re-launching a product, learning the hard way about the importance of clearance before adopting a mark. After becoming an IP attorney herself, Mary maintains a balanced perspective, giving great weight to immediate marketing objectives and the long view of her clients’ business vision. An experienced intellectual property attorney, Mary’s combination of legal, business and marketing perspectives reach far beyond merely registering and enforcing trademarks and copyrights.


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