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Susan Hollander is riding high on last month’s victory for actor Kevin Spacey, in which she moved to block a serial cybersquatter from using Spacey’s name on a Web site. She has fought to protect Chicken of the Sea International’s cherished and trademarked mermaid mascot; stopped several small juice chains from doing things she says imitate Jamba Juice Co.’s trademarked concepts; and protected L. Kee & Co. Inc.’s bedding patterns from being copied. At her firm, Manatt, Phelps & Phillips in Palo Alto, Calif., Hollander has a track record of trademark triumphs. Her clients include 24 Hour Fitness, semiconductor maker Xilinx Inc., Hollywood producer Dean Devlin, clothing manufacturer Cosmic Debris and Hanzell Vineyards. While an associate at Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison in 1993, she won a $2.3 million jury verdict in a federal trademark infringement case for the city of Valencia, Calif., which effectively barred businesses from using the city’s name. “There’s so much room for creativity in trademark infringement; there’s so much room for creativity in showing that confusion exists,” says Hollander, who nearly completed a doctorate in philosophy at Stanford University before realizing she’d rather craft arguments than spend her life studying how they’re structured. “I think it made me more creative in litigation,” she says now about her philosophy studies, which centered on Aristotle’s biological works. “I think it gave me unique analytical skills.” She said the Spacey matter was especially significant because it was the first celebrity domain name dispute to be decided since an arbitration panel ruled in January that a man named Jeff Burgar did not have to return the domain name “brucespringsteen.com” to the singer. Hollander’s work on behalf of artists like Spacey led her to jump last fall from Arter & Hadden’s San Francisco office to the Palo Alto office of Manatt, Phelps. The Los Angeles-based firm’s entertainment clients include Metallica, The Eagles and Carole King. Hollander, 43, was among Arter & Hadden’s top five revenue generators nationwide before joining Manatt, Phelps. “She’s starting to get that Hollywood quality up here in Silicon Valley,” said David Herbst, Manatt, Phelps’ administrative partner. Herbst said the firm has a strong trademark practice in Los Angeles, but that its Valley trademark practice took a hit when partner Amy Gilson moved to Colorado several years ago. “We were left with a hole; then we heard about Susan and her wonderful credentials, and we did our best to court her and woo her,” he recalls. The 1987 graduate of Boalt Hall School of Law began her career at Skjerven Morrill MacPherson, and served stints at Townsend and Townsend and Crew, Brobeck and the San Francisco branch of Jeffer, Mangels, Butler & Marmaro before joining Arter & Hadden in 1996. “Manatt is the firm I wanted to join out of law school, but I didn’t want to move to L.A. so I didn’t apply,” she says. “Now, it feels like I’m home.”

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