Anne Hiaring Hocking has specialized in trademark and copyright law since 1981.  She is Adjunct Professor of Trademark, Copyright, and International Intellectual Property Law at Golden Gate University in San Francisco, California and Bangkok, Thailand.  She has chaired numerous programs on Intellectual Property law topics, and has served as President of the San Francisco Intellectual Property Law Association and Chair of the State Bar of California Intellectual Property Law Section. She has spoken and moderated numerous International Trademark Law Association  and Practicing Law Institute programs.  She has written for AmJur on copyright and trademark law topics, as well as presented numerous papers.  She received her B.A. in German Literature from Reed College in 1973, Phi Beta Kappa and her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in 1979. In 2006 she received an LLM in International Law from Golden Gate University. She studied at the Albrecht-Ludwigs Universitaet in Freiburg and the Freie Universitaet in Berlin, Germany. She also worked for the Iran Center for Management Studies in Teheran, Iran  before attending law school.

After working at two large law firms, she was the IP rights attorney for Pacific Telesis for five years, where she was responsible for all aspects of domestic and international trademark filing and enforcement, and all copyright and trade secret procedures. She founded her own firm in 1990.

For an expanded resume, please click here.

Kathryn Wheble


Kate has practiced trademark and copyright law for twenty years in both New York and the Bay Area. Her clients have included small and large companies in numerous fields, including apparel, life sciences, entertainment, publishing, technology, food and food service, retail services, and wine. She has also advised a variety of creative artists and performers.

Kate's practice focuses on protection of intellectual property, in particular brands and creative works. Her trademark expertise encompasses brand clearance, registration, licensing, and enforcement. She also has experience in protecting, licensing and enforcing copyrights, advising on false advertising complaints, and protecting clients' rights on the Internet. In 2007 and 2008 she was name a Top Trademark Filer by Intellectual Property Insider magazine. For several years she was a columnist on trademark and copyright law for the ABTL Northern California chapter newsletter, and in 2011 served as co-chair of the Intellectual Property Owners Anti-Counterfeiting Committee.

Before coming to Hiaring+Smith, Kate was a partner in the San Francisco offices of two large law firms and practiced law for two years in New York. Kate has a law degree from Georgetown University Law Center. She worked in magazine and book publishing prior to her legal career.

Elizabeth J. Rest


Elizabeth is an attorney at Hiaring + Smith in San Rafael, California. Elizabeth's practice is focused on representing clients in trademark selection, clearance, prosecution, and enforcement, including handling trademark applications before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), in inter partes proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB), in litigation in both state and federal courts, and in domain name disputes before the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Other areas of emphasis include entertainment, sports, copyright, rights of publicity, business entity formation, maintenance, and dissolution, and the licensing of intellectual property. Prior to joining Hiaring + Smith, Elizabeth was an associate attorney at a premiere boutique San Francisco intellectual property, entertainment, and sports law firm. While there, Elizabeth focused on representing clients in the entertainment industry in transactional and business matters, as well as in litigation.

Elizabeth is a member of the State Bar of California Intellectual Property Law Section Executive Committee, and serves as the Immediate Past Chair of the Entertainment and Sports Law Interest Group of the California Bar's Intellectual Property Law Section. Elizabeth was unanimously elected to be the Chair of the State Bar of California Intellectual Property Law Section Executive Committee, and began her three-year term in September of 2014. Elizabeth will serve one year as Secretary, one as Vice Chair, and will serve as Chair in 2017.

Elizabeth is also a member of the California Bar Association, including the Intellectual Property Law section, the Bar Association of San Francisco, including the Intellectual Property and Internet Law and Sports and Entertainment Law sections, the Marin County Bar, including the Intellectual Property Law section, and the American Bar Association's section on Intellectual Property, and its Forum Committee on the Entertainment and Sports Industries.

Elizabeth is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the Northern and Central Districts of California, and before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Elizabeth received her B.A. in Drama, magna cum laude, from the University of California, Irvine. She received her J.D. degree, with Highest Honors, and her Intellectual Property Law Specialization Certificate, with Distinction, from Golden Gate University School of Law.

Elizabeth is a regular writer on intellectual property and entertainment law issues, including her article, Lost in Translation: A Critical Examination of Conflicting Decisions Applying the Doctrine of Foreign Equivalents, published at 96 Trademark Rep. 1211 (2006). Elizabeth is also a frequent presenter on topics in trademark, entertainment, and sports law.

In 2013 and 2014, Elizabeth was named as a Northern California Super Lawyer Rising Star in the field of IP Prosecution, a designation awarded to the top 2.5% of attorneys under the age of 40 in Northern California.

Eric Baxter


Eric has worn many hats in his twenty-five years as a paralegal. He worked for a software and telecommunications company, supporting a a wide variety of functions including intellectual property and contracts management. Since 1999 he has handled exclusively trademark and copyright law matters working for the predecessor firm to Hiaring + Smith, the IP department of a global corporate firm, and the in-house IP division for a major alcoholic beverages company. He has successfully prosecuted and managed domestic and global portfolios for a large variety of companies, from start ups to multinational concerns. Eric firmly believes that his mission as a paralegal is not only to provide his clients with the best possible solution to an IP issue but also to identify new opportunities for protection and enforcement. Eric received a Bachelors Degree in Sociology from UC Davis and a Masters Degree in English from Sonoma State University. Eric's wife Sharon manages the office and safety for a large painting contractor. His boy is a musician, his daughter is in high school. Eric's passions include writing, cooking, and bicycling.

Gerie Johnson


Gerie Johnson is a Litigation Secretary/Junior Paralegal who has worked for small to medium-sized law firms in Sonoma and Marin County. Prior to working at Hiaring + Smith, LLP Gerie worked for a large law firm in Sonoma County. Gerie believes in community service and has volunteered for the Sonoma County Public Law Library, the Sonoma County Public Defender's Office, the Sonoma County Bar Association, and the Marin County Bar Association.

Gerie has a background in state and federal civil litigation, bankruptcy, and corporate and business law. Gerie attended Empire Business College, the Santa Rosa Junior College, and is in the process of obtaining her bachelor's degree from Kaplan University.

Gerie is a native of Sonoma County and has a son named Noah. Gerie enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Hongjun (Helen) Breiner

Hongjun (Helen) Breiner is an Advisor to Hiaring +Smith . Working in the field of trademarks since 1988, Helen is an expert in trademark practice in both China and the U.S. She specializes in domestic and international trademark portfolio clearance, advising on corporate trademark protection plans, preparation of trademark applications, responding to Office Actions, post-registration maintenance and prosecuting cease and desist matters.

Prior to attending law school in the States, Helen worked first as a Trademark Examiner at the China Trademark Office and then a licensed trademark agent at China Trademark and Patent Law Office in Beijing. She later served as head of the Trademark Department of China Patent Agency (H.K.) Ltd. in Hong Kong. After attending law school, Helen worked as an Intellectual Property Specialist at the Sharper Image Corporation where she was responsible for the company's domestic and international patent, trademark, and copyright protection and enforcement. She then became a Trademark Paralegal at the predecessor firm to Hiaring + Smith, and later worked as a Trademark Administrator at a global IP and general practice firm.

Helen received her B.A. in English literature from Beijing Foreign Studies University in 1984 and her J.D. and Master of Intellectual Property Law from the University of New Hampshire School of Law (formerly called "Franklin Pierce Law Center") in 2001.

Helen reads and writes Mandarin. She also keeps busier than most, traveling between the U.S. and China frequently, raising her toddler son, and supporting her high school son in all his activities. Her husband Dan operates an import business into China; he is also fluent in Mandarin.

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Who We Are



Who We Are