Karen G. Johnson-McKewan

Intellectual Property

Karen Johnson-McKewan, an Intellectual Property partner in the San Francisco office, is a trial lawyer who concentrates her practice on complex intellectual property and commercial litigation for technology and consumer products companies. Ms. Johnson-McKewan has first-chaired several trials and has significant experience litigating and trying particularly intricate cases where simplifying complex technology issues is invaluable. Her engagements have involved matters in technology, Internet, financial, e-commerce, retail, software and gaming industries in a diverse set of courts and multiple arbitral bodies.

Ms. Johnson-McKewan’s clients include leading technology and Fortune 500 companies, and she has represented, among others, Oracle, VMware, EMC, NVIDIA Corporation, Flextronics, Logitech, and Levi Strauss & Co.

For three years (2005-2008), Ms. Johnson-McKewan served as Orrick’s San Francisco Office Leader.

The following is a sample of some of Ms. Johnson-McKewan’s cases.

  • Oracle Corp. v. State of Oregon (D. Or. and Marion County Circuit Court, 2014  to present) Represent Oracle in state and federal litigation against the State of Oregon concerning the development of Oregon's health insurance exchange.
  • Clouding IP v. VMware, EMC (D. Del. 2013 to present) Represent VMware and EMC in patent infringement litigation.
  • Oracle Corp. v. DrugLogic (N.D. Cal., 2010 to 2013) Successful representation of Oracle Corporation in patent infringement litigation accusing Oracle pharmacovigilance software.
  • Select Retrieval Patent Litigation (Multi-jurisdictional) and Execware Patent Litigation (D. Delaware) (2012-13) Represented several dozen ecommerce company clients in patent infringement litigation arising from use of parametric searching software.
  • Aloft v. VMware (D. Delaware) Successfully represented VMware in NPE patent case (cloud computing software).
  • MOSAID v. VMware (D. Delaware) Currently representing VMware in patent litigation. (cloud computing software) (2011-present).
  • FST v. Oracle (E.D. Texas) - Represented Oracle in patent litigation (database software) (2010).
  • Harman/Mobileye v. iOnRoad (S.D. N.Y. and Federal Circuit)(2013 - present) - Representing acquiror of mobile app company in patent litigation now on appeal (automated driver assistance software).
  • WBIP v. Kohler Co. (D. Mass. and Federal Circuit) (2013 - present) - Representing Kohler on appeal from patent infringement verdict (marine engine systems).
  • iVillage/NBC. (N.D. Cal.) Represented iVillage (acquired by NBC in 2006) in the complete dismissal of all federal claims, namely trademark infringement, false advertising, dilution and cybersquatting, asserted against iVillage based on iVillage’s use of certain trademarks on its astrology Web site.
  • Gallup Inc., v. Gallup-Pakistan, et al. (N.D. Cal., 2010) Represented a Pakistani public opinion survey company in trademark litigation brought by Gallup, Inc. Resolution assured client of continued use of Gallup-Pakistan name.
  • NVIDIAIn re 3dfx Interactive, Inc. - William A. Brandt, Jr. v. NVIDIA Corporation (N.D. Cal., Bankruptcy Court) Successfully represented NVIDIA Corporation in trial of fraudulent transfer and successor liability action brought by 3dfx’s bankruptcy trustee arising from NVIDIA’s 2001 acquisition of assets from 3dfx Interactive, Inc.
  • NVIDIA. Carlyle Fortran Trust, CarrAmerica Realty v. NVIDIA Corporation (N.D. Cal.)  Successfully defended NVIDIA in litigation brought by landlords of 3dfx Interactive, Inc., alleging NVIDIA interfered with 3dfx’s commercial leases by entering into an asset purchase agreement with 3dfx.
  • Google. Goddard v. Google. (N.D. Cal.) Obtained dismissal of consumer class action against Google alleging failure to enforce advertising rules precluding fraudulent mobile subscription service providers from falsely advertising offerings for free.
  • Logitech. Logitech Europe S.A. and Logitech, Inc. v. Expeditors International of Washington. (N.D. Cal.) Secured preliminary injunction for client Logitech. Freight carrier had seized Logitech goods everywhere in the world worth more than $10 million for disputed invoices of approximately $2 million; obtained order requiring immediate release of goods.
  • RockYou. Claridge v. RockYou, Inc., 785 F.Supp. 2d 855 (N.D. Ca. 2011). Represented RockYou in consumer class action arising from online data security breach.
  • Retek/Oracle Corporation. In re Retek Securities Litigation - Civil No. 02-4209-JRT/SRN. (D. Minn.) Obtained summary judgment in securities class action against Retek (now owned by Oracle Corporation).
  • Agile Software Corporation/Oracle Corporation. In re Agile Software Corporation Derivative Litigation. Secured dismissal of shareholder derivative action at pleading stage on behalf of Agile Software Corporation (acquired by Oracle Corporation).
  • Shell Oil Company. Shell Oil Co. v. Pacific Indemnity, et al. (San Mateo Superior Court) Tried 12 week pollution coverage case on behalf of the policy-holder, the Shell Oil Company, arising from decades-old pollution at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal in Colorado, requiring presentation of the history of scientific methods for detecting small amounts of contaminants in soil and ground water. Two weeks before going to the jury, the defendants agreed to an extremely satisfactory settlement.

Pro Bono

  • Perry v. Hollingsworth - drafted amicus brief to U.S. Supreme on behalf of Fortune 500 companies in support of effort to invalidate California’s Proposition 8.
  • Represented a breast cancer survivor and owner of Check Your Boobies, in a trademark matter for a breast cancer awareness group.

Karen Johnson-McKewan
  • Multi-Defendant Lawsuits and Indemnity Considerations -- IP Counsel Cafe, April 2013.
  • Panelist, Enterprise Risk Management: What GCs Need to Know, Argyle Executive Forum, Chief Legal Officer Leadership Forum, April, 2013.
  • “Patent Year in Review,” SFIPLA Annual Seminar, June 2012.
  • “America Invents Act: The Long Road to Reform.” IP Counsel Cafe, April 2012.
  • Sandpiper Partners, Northern California Legal Market Briefing, 2010.
  • “Reeling from the Recession: Keeping Faith with Ethics of the Profession During Turbulent Times,” Fourteenth Annual Statewide Ethics Symposium, California State Bar Committee on Professional Responsibility and Conduct, May 2010.
  • Financial Women’s Association of San Francisco, “The Great Recession: What Does the Future Hold for Women in Professional Services Firms?” November, 2009.
  • Defense Research Institute: Drug & Medical Device Seminar, “Ethical Considerations Associated with Contacting, Retaining and Working with Experts,” May 11, 2007, San Francisco, California.
  • Frequent speaker on Alternative Billing Arrangements and State of Legal Market.
Select Publications
  • “Class Action Fairness Act of 2005,” The Review of Banking and Financial Services, Vol. 21, No. 10, page 101 (2005).
Admitted In
  • California
Court Admissions
Supreme Court of the United States
    United States Court of Appeals
    • Ninth Circuit
    • Eighth Circuit
    • Federal Circuit
    United States District Court
    • Central District of California
    • Eastern District of California
    • Northern District of California
    • Southern District of California
    • Eastern District of Texas
    • Northern District of Florida

    • J.D., University of California, Davis School of Law, 1985
    • B.A., University of California, Davis, 1981

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