Knobbe/Martens: Intellectual Property Law



From the day our firm was founded, we have been committed to creating and fostering a dynamic, diverse workplace. It’s a commitment that has yielded real and meaningful results. Today we are one of the top 10 most diverse firms in the nation, in the top 20 for the highest percentage of minority partners, and among the top 10 for the highest percentage of minority attorneys in the U.S.—a unique record among law firms our size. 

We promote diversity through active outreach and recruitment, as well as through internal programs that ensure the needs and goals of all our diverse employees are recognized and valued. Our Diversity Committee includes members from a broad spectrum of attorneys reflective of our diverse workforce. Our attorneys have diverse cultural and religious backgrounds and combined, speak over 23 foreign languages from Portuguese to Punjabi.

The Diversity Committee is tasked with implementing programs that create a wide range of professional opportunities, while maintaining the work/life balance we find essential to building an energized, well-rounded firm.

A realistic, annual billing quota means our attorneys and staff have time to devote to their families or other personal interests—without impacting their career goals. Indeed, we promote female attorneys to equity partnership at a much higher rate than other large firms. And we ensure the needs of our minority employees are met as well, through comprehensive networking and training.

Our commitment to diversity is at the very core of our firm—making us open to new ideas, eager to take on new challenges, and always ready with new solutions.

No Glass Ceiling to Equity Partnership

  • Percentage of female equity partners (18%) corresponds closely to percentage of female associates, which exceeds the industry average
  • Percentage of female associates (29%) exceeds percentage of engineering bachelor degrees awarded to women (18%)

Unique Culture and Programs That Promote Diversity

  • Reasonable annual quota (1,750 hours per year)
  • Quota credit (at least 15 days per year) available to assist in meeting quota
  • Single-tierd (equity) partnership
  • Associates have signficant client contact and responsibility
  • Reduced Quota Program for Associates
  • Reduced Quota Program for Partners
  • Paid maternity leave with return-to-work transition period for associates and partners

Diversity in Action

  • Two offices managed by a female or minority attorney
  • Five out of twelve committees chaired by a female or minority attorney
  • Female and minority attorneys have major roles in litigation and at trial


Susan Natland Named "Best in Trademark" in Legal Media Group's (LMG) "Americas Women in Business Law Awards"
June 3, 2015 | Trademark | Attorney: Natland | National | Legal Media Group (LMG)

Ranked Top 10 for Overall Diversity on AmLaw Diversity Scorecard 
May 28, 2015 | Diversity | National | The American Lawyer

Ranked Top 10 in “100 Best Law Firms for Minority Attorneys” and Top 20 in “50 Best Law Firms for Minority Partners” in Law360’s “Minority Report” 
May 20, 2015 | Diversity | National | Law360

Stacey Halpern, Catherine Holland and Lynda Zadra-Symes Recognized in "2015 Women in Law Awards"
March 31, 2015 | Attorneys: Halpern, Holland, Zadra-Symes | National | Lawyer Monthly Magazine

Adeel Akhtar Named to Lawyers of Color's 2015 "Power List"
February 5, 2015 | Attorney: Akhtar | National | Lawyers of Color

Salima Merani Named 2015 "Rainmaker" by Diversity & the Bar  
December 5, 2014 | Attorney: Merani | National | Diversity & the Bar

Carol Pitzel Cruz Named "Top Women Attorneys in Washington - Rising Star"   
November 10, 2014 | Attorney: Pitzel Cruz | Regional | Super Lawyers

Maria Anderson Named in 2014 edition of "IP Stars - Top 250 Women in IP" by Managing Intellectual Property
September 19, 2014 | Patents | Trademarks | Licensing & Counseling | Attorney: Anderson (Maria) | National | Managing Intellectual Property (MIP)

Nine Knobbe Martens Attorneys Named "Top Women Attorneys in Southern California"   
August 6, 2014 | Litigation | Patents | Trademarks | Attorneys: Armond, Burgess, Halpern, Hsu, Katzenellenbogen (Lauren), Lowe, Natland, Swaroop, Vogel Weil | Regional | Super Lawyers

Dr. Salima Merani Named in 2014 "Women Leaders in Tech Law"
August 1, 2014 | Attorney: Merani | Regional | The Recorder

Carrie Zhang Named to Lawyers of Color's  "Hot List"
June 27, 2014 | Attorney: Zhang | National | Lawyers of Color

Ranked Top 10 for Overall Diversity on AmLaw Diversity Scorecard 
June 5, 2014 | Diversity | National | The American Lawyer

Lynda Zadra-Symes, Stacey Halpern, Catherine Holland, and Susan Natland Named to Legal Media Group's Guide to the World's Leading Women in Business Law
June 2, 2014 | Trademarks | International | Legal Media Group (LMG)

Salima Merani Named to Daily Journal's List of Top Women Lawyers 
May 8, 2014 |  Regional | The Daily Journal

Attorney Finder