Jennifer’s motives are driven by honesty,
loyalty and professional excellence.”
Craft points out that her clients have
names that are world brands—their survival
and success depends on people knowing
who they are. So she understands the tears
and fears she typically encounters. “I care for
what they care for—it’s an important issue to
them, so it’s important to me, too,” she says.
“But there’s no need for me as their attorney
to get overly emotional. You can empathize,
appreciate and understand, but I take that
WHEN A LAW SCHOOL INTERNSHIP
at Agassi Enterprises went swimmingly in
2000, Craft was offered a gig. She drafted
and negotiated endorsement sponsorship
agreements for athletes and entertainers.
Perry Rogers, president when Craft joined,
remembers a particular arbitration. “There
was a lot of homework that needed to be
done on our side,” Rogers says. “What
impressed me about her was that she
didn’t just do the homework, but that she
was so excited and committed to getting it
done right. She had a real passion that was
apparent early in her career, and I knew she
was going to be something special.”
She left Agassi to focus more on
intellectual property and moved to Lewis
and Roca in 2007, then Gordon Silver, and,
in 2015, Dickinson Wright.
Save for a brief spell as a tutor, every
job Craft’s ever had has been within the
law-firm grind: She was a runner-file clerk,
receptionist, legal secretary and paralegal.
Post-bar, she was an intern, an associate of
counsel, income partner, equity partner and,
finally, department chair.
Quite often, she says, she looks around the
room and sees that she is the only woman
present. Quite often, the only Asian, too.
“I think people look at me and think I’m
young and perhaps inexperienced—I bump
against that maybe more [than gender
and race matters],” she says. “I believe that
the moment I speak it becomes clear the
authority I have on a topic.”
Take the topic of octagons. Yes, the shape.
Now consider the typical UFC matchup:
two people in a cage, using mixed martial
arts to beat each other silly. Then think
about the UFC’s ultimate symbol, the very
space in which they fight—the Octagon.
There is disagreement about who deserves
credit for inventing the eight-sided chain link
cage that the fighters inhabit. But there is
little question regarding who owns the IP that
is the Octagon. It belongs to the UFC. And it
was Craft who helped the owners of the Las
Vegas-based organization realize that they
were under-valuing an important icon of their
business, and that they should establish, and
then defend, their trademark.
Several years after brothers Frank and
Lorenzo Fertitta bought UFC in 2001, Craft
was hired to help them protect and enforce
their IP. She started by establishing their
ownership of the acronym—the Universal Food
Company was already using it in its internet
domain. (Let’s just say you’ll never find Thai
coconut water at UFC.com ever again.)
The brothers talked up their interest
in traditional trademarks—taglines,
merchandise, the organization’s name. The
obvious stuff. Craft thought more deeply.
Then she got into the Octagon herself.
“When you see the cage, the fighting
arena, you instantly associate that with the
UFC. Sometimes people fail to recognize the
deeper aspects of a company,” says Craft.
She approached it as a textbook example
of trade dress. “When I approached them
about the [Octagon] project, they didn’t
understand it at first, and then they got it,”