CONTACT: Barbara Fornasiero, EAFocus, Inc. 248.260.8466, 

Ann Arbor, Mich. —July 20, 2018—James K. Cleland, a shareholder in the Ann Arbor office of Brinks Gilson & Lione, one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the U.S., has been included in the 2018 IAM Patent 1000, a list of the world’s leading patent professionals, in recognition of the leadership he has demonstrated in complex patent litigation.

At Brinks, Cleland’s practice focuses on patent, trademark, copyright, trade secret and unfair competition litigation in a broad range of technologies including the automotive, chemical, materials science, mechanical, electrical and medical device arts, as well as in client counseling, opinion and licensing work in those same areas. He is co-chair, along with Ann Arbor Managing Partner Steven L. Oberholtzer, of Brinks’ Automotive Industry Group, which offers comprehensive counsel on intellectual property litigation, patent, licensing, trademark, copyright and trade secret issues involving nearly every major system associated with a vehicle, and has a close eye on the automotive market, including autonomy, mobility and connectivity, and the future of the industry. Both Cleland and Oberholtzer were recognized for their automotive industry knowledge in IAM’s 2018 summary of Brinks’ strength in serving the intellectual property needs of the automotive sector.

In March, Cleland was a featured guest on Autoline This Week, an Emmy award-winning, weekly half-hour television program featuring top automotive executives and journalists. The show focused on trade secret theft and related intellectual property issues within the automotive/autonomous vehicle industry and can be viewed here.

Cleland’s extensive litigation experience includes trials, preliminary injunction hearings, Markman hearings, summary judgment proceedings and all aspects of fact and expert witness discovery, spanning federal courts across the country. He also focuses on post-grant review proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, the busiest patent forum in the country. Among his legal accolades, Cleland was named a DBusiness Top Lawyer in the area of trade secrets in 2016. He holds a J.D., cum laude, from the Indiana University Maurer School of Law and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering, cum laude, from the University of Michigan.

Brinks Gilson & Lione

Celebrating more than 100 years of intellectual property law, Brinks Gilson & Lione is one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the US, and helps clients around the world to protect and enforce their intellectual property rights.  Our more than 130 lawyers, patent agents and scientific advisors assist clients in all aspects of patent, trademark, unfair competition, trade secret, and copyright law.  Brinks attorneys provide informed counsel with respect to innovations in a range of complex and valuable technologies, including pharmaceuticals, chemicals, bioengineering, industrial manufacturing, electronics and software, and medical devices.  More information is at