Mar 8, 2023 | Intellectual Property, The Practical Lawyer

This article is part of the continuing series of interviews between Rajiv S. Khanna, principal of The Law Offices of Rajiv S. Khanna, PC, (, and leading practitioners across the country, designed to provide personal and professional insights into various areas of the law.

Conversation with an Expert: Kim Tignor | Presented by ALI CLE | Intellectual Property and More

Rajiv: Will you talk a little bit about your area of practice and what you do?

Kim: I work with The Institute for Intellectual Property & Social Justice and in my capacity as executive director, I am in charge of, or focus a lot on, community outreach and our advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill. The way that those two areas work together is that I am working a lot with creative entrepreneurs. And when I say that, I’m talking about anyone whose business strategy or work is centered by human ingenuity or their intellectual property—anyone ranging from an activist to an artist. Those are the communities that we’re focused on engaging and organizing around. And it’s been a really lovely opportunity because we’re able to hear directly from our creators as to the issues that they’re navigating and the difficulties that they’re having in being able to share, protect, and monetize their intellectual property.

To that end, we use the community outreach and what we learn from our creatives to inform our advocacy efforts on the Hill. So being able to flag any gaps that we see in legislation that is working its way through, or just flagging issues that our creators are having as they push through their duty for oversight over on the Hill. It’s been a really great opportunity to learn directly from creatives to hear what they’re navigating and then be able to work closely with our champions on the Hill so that they’re able to address and to be mindful of the issues that our creators of color are navigating.

Is your work primarily advocacy or lobbying rather than just providing assistance in intellectual property issues?

I would say it’s both.

So, you provide counseling as well as help with the filing of trademarks and other similar devices?

Yes, that’s correct.

Would there be no patents involved in something like this?

We’ve reached out to and talk to a number of different businesses and creative entrepreneurs that are interested in filing patents. And we look forward to the opportunity to do that. We have a lot of amazing firms that have volunteered to do pro bono work in that space, but we haven’t yet identified anyone who’s ready to move forward with the patents as of yet.

How long has your organization been in existence?

Off the top of my head, I want to say 11 years.

CLICK HERE to read the full article, which was originally published in ALI CLE’s The Practical Lawyer.