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Intellectual Property Law

Steven White

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Graduation Year: 2014

Hometown: Portland, Oregon

Undergraduate & Previous Work Experience: I earned a BA in Literature from Loyola University, New Orleans, and have since worked in publishing for 22 years as a news reporter, feature writer and trade magazine editor.

Who is your current employer? I remain employed as the Editor in Chief of RePlay Publishing, Inc., Tarzana, Calif., a trade magazine publishing house. I’ve also worked as a consultant for a Santa Monica-based start-up firm, Comply Socially, which produces educational resources that help business people better navigate the emerging world of social media. I’m looking forward to melding my new training as a lawyer with my experience as a journalist and editor.

What is your particular area of interest pertaining to law? I’m keenly interested in the intersection of online digital culture and the law, including intellectual property, privacy and consumer protection.

Were you involved with any extracurricular activities? I participated as a student conferee in the IP in the Trees workshop program for scholars, worked with a local practitioner on a paper for the Oregon Intellectual Property Network online newsletter, edited other OIPN submissions and participated when I could in events put on by the Intellectual Property Student Organization. As someone who worked full time throughout law school, I also attended the many excellent lunch speaker programs when I was able to break away from day job.

What do you like to do for fun? I relish spending time with my family including my wife Abby and my kids Emmet, 14, and Zoe, 11. I also love to play golf, although my clubs spent most of my law school years in the garage. Since graduating, I’m rediscovering the game, and I’m working with the alumni office to jumpstart a Lewis and Clark Law School golf event.

Favorite places in Portland? I live in the Laurelhurst neighborhood, and I really enjoy spending time in Laurelhurst Park with its beautiful trees and excellent people watching.

Why did you pick Lewis & Clark Law School? I moved to Portland to attended Lewis and Clark Law School. I picked Lewis and Clark specifically for its flexible part-time program and for the way it welcomes working students.

What did you like most about Lewis & Clark? I was impressed with the way most of my professors took a sincere interest in my education and career prospects. Faculty members also welcomed the diversity of experience and opinion that students brought to the classroom discussion.

What was your favorite experience at Lewis & Clark? My favorite experience was writing my Capstone Paper with Professor Lydia Loren. She allowed me to combine my experience as a reporter with my burgeoning legal research skills to write a paper describing the rise of a new model in music licensing in the 1990s. The paper examined the efforts of a Canadian technology company, TouchTunes Music, to secure music licensing for a national network of pay-for-play Internet jukeboxes in locations across the United States.  I interviewed a number of the key players in that effort as well as other industry leaders, merging that research with a look at the unique legal history of the coin-operated jukebox, which enjoyed a special exemption from certain copyright obligations for much of the 20th century. I really enjoyed getting to combine elements of my working life with my role as law student in developing that paper.

Any advice for new students? Law school is inherently stressful, and I succumbed to a certain amount of that stress despite having the perspective of 20 years in the workforce before coming back to school. I often felt overwhelmed in my first year of law school. But I found, over time, that I performed better and learned more when I was able to relax a bit, worry less about grades and really develop my own understanding of the concepts in play in my various classes. For me, law school was difficult, but enjoyable. I was really surprised how much I enjoyed some of the classes that I took out of a sense of obligation, like Income Tax and Secured Transactions. They were fascinating, at least to me.