How this Bay Street partner expanded her IP practice

Anna Wilkinson found success when she enrolled in the Osgoode Professional LLM
Anna Wilkinson-OPD
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Portrait of Anna Wilkinson

Anna Wilkinson

Partner at Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP
Osgoode LLM: Intellectual Property, 2012
Year of call: 2002

Anna Wilkinson doesn’t like being pigeonholed. So she didn’t like how, as a mid-level associate at Norton Rose Fulbright, her practice focused exclusively on patent law. It was too narrow. Wilkinson wanted to broaden her practice to include copyright and trademark work.

To achieve that goal, she enrolled in the intellectual-property specialization of the Osgoode Professional LLM. “It’s hard to get a really solid grounding in IP,” she says. “It’s just so broad. I wanted to get the lay of the land.”

The program delivered a refreshing combination of theoretical and practical knowledge. Some of the instructors were practitioners, and Wilkinson loved their concrete perspective. “They had real-world stories from the trenches,” she says. They also filled gaps in her education. For instance, law school never touched upon remedies — the potential rewards of a lawsuit — so the in-depth course on that subject was a revelation. Back at the office, Wilkinson could better inform her clients of the risks they would encounter if they pursued litigation. “Before I took the course, I thought, How could there be a course just about IP remedies? After I took it, I thought, How could there not be?

One year after Wilkinson finished the LLM, she made partner. With her newfound knowledge in hand, she is now able to help clients in all areas of IP. And, perhaps most importantly, she has more confidence. “It’s changed the things I put my hand up for.”

Fast facts about the Osgoode Professional LLM

1. Flexible: The program is designed for professionals. Evening and weekend classes let you earn a degree while working.

2. Specialized: Dive deep into one of 14 areas of specialization, including tax, securities, constitutional, criminal, labour, and dispute resolution.

3. Rigorous: Throughout the program, you’ll complete detailed papers on a complex area of law, honing your legal writing and analytical skills.

Osgoode’s Professional LLM is designed with the working lawyer in mind. To learn more, visit the program’s website or call (416) 673-4670.

This story is from our Winter 2018 Issue.