Planning a meeting to remember
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Planning a meeting to remember

This year’s Annual Meeting co-chairs have three main hopes for attendees: That they will be impressed with the quality of the sessions; that they will make several new business connections; and that they will drink some great wine

Maximillian Kinkeldey of Grünecker Kinkeldey Stockmair & Schwanhausser in Munich says that he and co-chair Dana Gilland of Diageo spent most of their time making sure this year’s sessions covered practical, timely topics and choosing a keynote speaker. The rest was easy.

“With a fantastic co-chair and an unbelievable staff liaison like Sarah Bourke, it wasn’t that much of a challenge,” says Kinkeldey. “It has been unbelievably easy and exciting.”

Gilland agrees, and says that she found the process “to be incredibly organized.”

With everything running so smoothly, Gilland and Kinkeldey were able to concentrate on building a solid program. “I tried to make sure there wasn’t a single session I wouldn’t attend myself,” says Kinkeldey.

Kinkeldey’s “all time favorite session” for this year is WM01, Workshop-Effective Oral Presentations, which he encourages everyone to attend. “Over the past 14 years of my career I’ve seen people give presentations that were very good quality as far as the content, but could have been delivered so much better,” says Kinkeldey. Among other tips, the session will pinpoint the “seven deadly sins of public speaking.”

Kinkeldey’s other standouts include session CT02 on ambush marketing, which both he and Gilland identified as a topic of interest this year. Gilland is also excited about CM21, Women in Trademarks and session IT20 on how companies can promote their brands through social media.

Gilland and Kinkeldey also worked hard to choose a keynote speaker who could offer the best mix of trademark knowledge and charisma. Their choice—San Francisco local John Anderson, President and CEO of Levi Strauss & Co.—promises to deliver and will address the Annual Meeting tomorrow morning.

While the program includes more than enough to keep attendees busy, Gilland and Kinkeldey urge members not to miss the San Francisco sights. The tour of Alcatraz and, of course, a visit to wine country are at the top of their lists of activities. “I want people to fly back home thinking that this was a high-quality meeting with high-quality sessions and that they took something home with them,” says Kinkeldey. “I really want people to say: ‘I learned.’”

First Annual Meeting

Kinkeldey: San Antonio, 1997

Gilland: San Diego, 1996

What has been the best part of participating in INTA?

Gilland: “Getting to know outside counsel on a personal level. You get advice that’s more concise and that’s relevant to your business – that’s been invaluable.”

Kinkeldey: “INTA is the only truly global platform any trademark practitioner has. I really feel at home in the INTA community. If you’re willing to dedicate the time, INTA pays back.”

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