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Kirkland & Ellis Nabs IP Veteran From Jones Day

An intellectual property veteran has left Jones Day to join Kirkland & Ellis LLP's Chicago office as a partner, bringing 35 years of experience with big-league clients like IBM Corp. and Procter & Gamble Co., the firm announced last week.

Ken Adamo, who worked in Jones Day's Cleveland and Dallas offices, has tried patent, trademark, copyright and trade secrets cases before state and federal courts as well as the U.S. International Trade Commission, Kirkland & Ellis said.

"Ken's trial experience gives our clients yet another option at the firm for their significant IP matters," Kirkland & Ellis Chairman Jeffrey C. Hammes said Feb. 28, when Adamo's arrival was announced.

Adamo has served as lead trial counsel in dozens of major cases, representing IBM in Section 146 proceedings involving Rambus Inc. and defending IBM in a patent infringement suit brought by Auburn University.

His other significant clients include J.M. Smucker Co., Nestle Purina PetCare Co. and Eli Lilly & Co.

Many of the cases he has worked on have been tried to verdict, including his client Texas Instruments Inc.'s patent fight against Hyundai Electronics Industries Co. A jury found the patents in that case were valid and had been willfully infringed, awarding Texas Instruments $25.2 million.

The case settled while a ruling on TI's motion for enhanced damages, prejudgment interest

and attorneys' fees was still pending, Kirkland & Ellis said. As part of the settlement, Hyundai took a nonexclusive license and pledged to pay $1.2 billion in royalty payments over the life of the 10-year license.

In addition to his trial experience, Adamo has also served as counsel in more than 35 appeals before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. He writes and lectures on litigation, trial issues and intellectual property law for publications around the world, according to his new firm.

He joined Jones Day in 1983, after an eight-year stint with Chicago IP firm Neuman Williams Anderson & Olson.

"I practiced in Chicago early in my career and developed a lot of respect for the skills of Kirkland's IP trial lawyers, which was reinforced over the years as I was opposite the firm in litigation," Adamo said.

Adamo earned a bachelor's degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y. He holds a law degree from Albany Law School of Union University in Albany, N.Y., and a Master of Laws from Chicago's John Marshall Law School.

He is registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and admitted to practice in Illinois, New York, Ohio and Texas.

Kirkland & Ellis' intellectual property practice was founded in 1925, and consists of 300 attorneys, 75 percent of whom have degrees and experience in technical areas, the firm said.