Stephen Baird

Stephen Baird

Shareholder

Steve Baird works with clients to address their most difficult trademark problems. Steve provides strategic guidance on trademark usage and clearance, branding strategies, domestic and worldwide portfolio management, litigation and enforcement, internet domain name and trademark disputes, licensing, and prosecution. Clients turn to him for his deep experience in trademark and branding matters for startups; design and creative firms; colleges and universities; apparel; jewelry; consumer products; sporting, hunting, and other outdoor goods; food products and ingredients; building materials; medical devices and pharmaceuticals; chemicals, insecticides, and adhesive brands; all kinds of manufacturers; accounting, architecture, engineering, construction, and real estate development firms; restaurants; casinos; software companies; banks; and financial institutions.

Steve’s trademark and brand protection work has gained notoriety for the protection and registration of nontraditional trademarks such as single color marks, product configuration trademarks, and trade dress and product packaging trademarks. He also has helped American Indian tribes build their intellectual property rights and address their legal issues involving intellectual property. His trademark and branding experience in the outdoor sporting, archery, hunting, and shooting industry is extensive and long-lasting

Steve protects companies’ most important brands and other intellectual property assets by designing efficient, creative, tailored legal strategies to advance their most important business objectives.

Steve is relentless in seeking to understand his clients, their business, industry, goals, objectives, challenges, and limitations. He combines his decades of legal IP experience with his background working as a registered pharmacist, which he has employed to serve a variety of life science, pharmaceutical, dietary supplement, and medical device brands and companies.

A prolific blogger and recognized thought leader, for the last two years Steve has been named the number one author on trademark matters according to JD Supra’s “Readers’ Choice Awards”.

Concentrations

  • Trademark usage and clearance
  • Trademark portfolio management
  • Nontraditional trademarks
  • Trademark litigation
  • Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) practice and procedures
  • Domain name and internet disputes
  • Trademark counterfeiting
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Capabilities

Experience

  • Overcame refusal and persuaded USPTO to issue U.S. Trademark Reg. No. 1,829,415 for the color lavender as applied to spray in place polyurethane building insulation.°
  • Overcame USPTO refusals and defended against five separate third-party trademark oppositions eventually allowing issuance of U.S. Trademark Reg. No. 3,300,390 for the color blue as applied to the exterior housing of airless paint sprayers for use by professional painters and professional contractors.°
  • Overcame refusals and persuaded USPTO to issue U.S. Service Mark Reg. No. 2,535,181 for a formation of light beams resembling the conical framework of a tipi emanating from a circular source of light in connection with casino facilities.°
  • Appealed to TTAB and obtained reversals of ex parte USPTO refusals allowing for issuance of U.S. Trademark Reg. Nos. 3,936,156; 3,924,411; and 3936157, comprising pistol configurations for the famous Walther PPK and P99 hand guns.°
  • Appealed to TTAB and obtained reversal of ex parte USPTO refusals, thereby expanding the trademark law regarding specimens and displays associated with goods to include use of claimed mark in infomercials. In re Hydron Technologies, Inc., 51 USPQ2d 1531 (TTAB 1999).°
  • Prevailed at trial before TTAB, opposing federal registration of HOLAIRA trademark for medical devices for use in treating obstructive lung diseases, by establishing likelihood of confusion with client’s prior ALAIR® trademark for medical devices that treat pulmonary diseases (Opp. No. 91215699).°
  • Prevailed on summary judgment before TTAB, opposing federal registration of WALTHER trademark for clocks and jewelry, by establishing likelihood of confusion with prior WALTHER trademark of the world renown German firearm manufacturer (Opposition No. 91215976).°
  • Prevailed at trial before TTAB, on all grounds of opposition asserted by world-renowned Swiss watchmaker Omega S.A. (likelihood of confusion, fraud, non-use, and abandonment), defending client’s right to register OMEGA trademark for certain tactical gear and equipment (Opp. Nos. 91173785 and 91174067).°
  • Prevailed at trial before TTAB, opposing federal registration of a non-verbal banner logo for clocks and jewelry, by establishing the applicant’s lack of a bona fide intent to use the claimed mark in commerce (Opposition No. 91215976).°
  • Prevailed at TTAB, opposing registration of applicant’s claimed single color trademark for gunpowder (applicant previously had convinced TTAB of acquired distinctiveness in prior ex parte appeal), with applicant allowing the entry of default judgment against itself, following the filing of client’s 50-page Notice of Opposition, laying out a compelling case of functionality that wasn’t addressed in the prior TTAB decision on acquired distinctiveness (Opp. No. 91234474).°

°The above representations were handled by Mr. Baird prior to his joining Greenberg Traurig, LLP.

Recognition & Leadership

  • Listed, Managing IP Magazine's World IP Handbook and Survey, “IP Stars,” 2013-2019
  • Listed, World Trademark Review, “WTR 1000,” 2013-2019
    • Ranked Gold in Minnesota, Enforcement and Litigation
    • Ranked Gold in Minnesota, Prosecution and Strategy
  • Listed, Chambers USA Guide, Intellectual Property - Minnesota, 2019
  • The Best Lawyers in America, 2012-2019
    • Selected, “Minneapolis Lawyer of the Year: Trademark Law,” 2017
    • Listed, Copyright Law, 2012-2019
    • Listed, Trademark Law, 2013-2019
    • Listed, Litigation – Intellectual Property,” 2014-2019
  • Top Author, JD Supra, “Readers’ Choice Awards,” 2017-2019
  • Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, Minnesota Super Lawyers, 2004-2018
    • Selected, “Top 100 Lawyers,” 2014
  • Minnesota Lawyer
    • Selected, “Attorney of the Year,” 2011 and 2013
    • Selected, “Circle of Excellence,” 2013
  • Name Protect Trademark Insider, 2004-2007
    • Ranked Number Six, Top U.S. Trademark Filer, 2004-2007
    • Top 50 Trademark Attorneys, 2004-2007
  • Selected, CityBusiness, “Forty Under Forty Award,” 2000
  • Recipient, First Prize, Brand Names Education Foundation Ladas Memorial Award for Writing Excellence, 1992
  • Rated, AV Preeminent® 5.0 out of 5.0

°AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell DistinguishedSM and Martindale-Hubbell NotableSM are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell® certification procedures, standards and policies.

  • Member, International Trademark Association, 1992-Present
    • Member, Editorial Board, 1992-1994, 1998-1999
    • Member, Brief Amicus Committee, 1995-1997
  • Member, Minnesota Intellectual Property Law Association, 1995-Present
  • Member, Stafford Publications, Intellectual Property Law Advisory Board, 2012-Present
  • Member, The University of Iowa, The College of Pharmacy, Executive Leadership Board, 2016-Present
  • Member, Minnesota Bar Association, 1991-Present
  • Editorial Board, The Trademark Reporter, 1992-1994, 1998-1999
  • William Mitchell College of Law, 1997
    • Intellectual Property Development Advisory Board, 1997
    • Adjunct Professor, Summer 1997 Institute

Credentials

Education
  • J.D., with high distinction, University of Iowa College of Law, 1990
  • B.S., with distinction, University of Iowa College of Pharmacy, 1986
Clerkships
  • Hon. Wilson Cowen, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, 1990-1991
Admissions
  • Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit