Chris LightnerAlston & Bird
Laura FrittsEmory University Office of Technology Transfer
Brad GroffGardner Groff Greenwald & Villanueva, PC
Ellen LailPure Storage
Karen MillsMills Law Associates, LLC
Nicole MorrisEmory University School of Law
Cheryl NajaAlston & Bird
Chris is active not only on the Georgia PATENTS Advisory Board, but also in leadership in the Intellectual Property Owners Association, on the Board of Directors for the Atlanta Bar Association, and in the IP Section of The State Bar of Georgia. For his ongoing local bar association and community service leadership efforts, Chris has been awarded the Georgia PATENTS Program’s Volunteer of the Year Award (2015 and 2016), and the Atlanta Bar Association’s Celebrating Service Award (2015). He will also in October 2017 receive Georgia State University College of Law’s IP Community Service Award. Chris routinely speaks as a panelist at local and state bar association CLE events; in his free time he goes to the park, swimming, camping, or the Tellus Museum with his seven children.
Scott received his Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Tech, and his Law Degree and Masters in Business from Georgia State University. He is heavily involved in many IP groups, including the being Chair for Georgia State University’s Intellectual Property Advisory Board.
Scott lives in Atlanta, Georgia and is married with four children.
Before joining Emory, Laura represented branded and generic pharmaceutical companies in Abbreviated New Drug Application (“ANDA”) litigation arising under the Hatch-Waxman Act. She has been recognized by Chambers USA, by Managing IP in the “Top 250 Women in IP” and as an “IP Star,” and by LMG Life Sciences as a “Life Sciences Star.”
Brad is a frequent speaker at professional programs and law schools as well as a mentor to many younger attorneys. Prior to his legal career, Brad was a mechanical engineer in the nuclear materials field. He is a named inventor on two patents and a published author. Brad devotes considerable time and resources to his community, serving in several civic organizations. His pro bono efforts include the legal representation of a faith-based youth leadership organization, trademark work for churches and church programs, and legal work for a clean drinking water initiative in Haiti.
Prior to joining Pure Storage, Ellen held various sales leadership, business development and alliance roles at Cisco and BellSouth Business Systems. She also and led the Mid-Atlantic/Southeast and Federal Teams as Divisional Vice President of sales for VCE (Virtual Computing Environment). In addition to her position on the Georgia PATENTS advisory board, Ellen enjoys volunteering as mentor for both Georgia Tech’s Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC), Women Unlimited, a Women’s Leadership Development Organization and serving on the Open Doors and Red Carpet committees of Saint Mark United Methodist Church’s membership outreach programs.
Ellen and her husband, Mike, reside in Midtown Atlanta, Georgia where they enjoy all the city of Atlanta has to offer from it’s fabulous restaurants, music venues and museums to its beautiful weather where they enjoy biking, hiking and tennis.
Earlier in her career, Karen was an electrical engineer with an electric utility corporation where she designed electrical distribution systems and later managed the organization’s Transmission Line Lightning Reliability Improvement Program. She is also a registered Professional Engineer, the profession’s highest designation.
Karen is also founder of KVM Enterprises, LLC (dba Miss Jenny’s Treats), a food products company which was launched in June 2016.
She graduated with a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a Juris Doctor from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Prior to joining the Emory faculty, Nicole was the former Managing Patent Counsel at The Coca-Cola Company and was responsible for the development and implementation of the Company’s global patent strategy and providing day-to-day advice and counseling to business stakeholders.
Nicole received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Northwestern, her M.S. in Chemistry from University of Michigan, her law degree from the University of Minnesota, and is a registered patent attorney. She has over twelve years of experience practicing patent law in large and mid-sized law firms and has represented clients in patent and trademark litigation matters, as well as patent prosecution matters. She also worked as an engineer for six years with 3M and Eli Lilly and has over twenty years of experience working with consumer products and technology commercialization.
Nicole is a frequent speaker on innovation, technology commercialization, and patent law topics including patent strategy, IP licensing, and the role of corporate counsel in patent transactions. She is heavily involved in the IP community as a member of the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), Atlanta IP Inn of Court, Atlanta Bar Association, National Bar Association IP Section, a board member of Georgia Lawyers for the Arts, and Minority In-House Counsel Association. In 2013, Professor Morris was awarded the 2013 “Rising Star Corporate Counsel Award from the Atlanta Business Chronicle and featured in the August 2013 issue of Corporate Counsel magazine.