International Women's Day Spotlight - IPIC Director - Jennifer Dove
Marked annually on March 8th International Women's Day (IWD) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. Participation is witnessed worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women's achievements and rally for women's equality. This year's campaign theme is 'Embrace Equity' because true inclusion and belonging require equitable action, and because when we embrace equity, we embrace diversity and inclusion. In celebration of this day IPIC will highlight prominent women members who are just some of the many incredible women within the IP profession.
Jennifer Dove, IPIC Director, Trademark Agent, Coastal Trademark Services
Jenn practices exclusively in the trademark field as a trademark agent with Coastal Trademark Services. Jenn joined Coastal in 2012, and has worked in the field of intellectual property since 2003. She manages all aspects of trademark registration and maintenance including clearance, prosecution, opposition and cancellation. She provides practical, strategic advice to clients concerning brand protection and trademark usage.
In addition to her role at Coastal, Jenn is an active contributor to the IP community and is serving on the Board of Directors for IPIC. Jenn previously served as chair of the Trademark Administrators Committee where she helped launch and develop IPIC’s certification program for trademark administrators. She has also been an instructor for IPIC’s Trademark Agent Examination Prep Course and a mentor in IPIC’s mentor program.
Away from work, Jenn enjoys spending time outdoors and relaxing with her husband and their adorable dog, Baxter.
Why is equity, diversity, and inclusion important to the IP profession?
Aside from being a moral obligation, the simple fact is that people want to work at and with organizations that value and support them. Those that fail to prioritize EDI will no doubt find themselves becoming less relevant and unable to compete.
Which of your accomplishments are you most proud of?
I’m proud of my contribution to the development of IPIC's Trademark Administrators Program. Seeing people participate and obtain certification as trademark administrators through the program has been extremely fulfilling. I view these types of educational initiatives as empowering. They provide people with the skills and confidence to work at a high level and advance in their careers.
This year’s theme for International Women’s Day is “Embrace Equity” what actions do you believe need to be taken in the IP profession to Embrace Equity.
Embracing equity requires more than paying lip service to EDI principles; it involves actively fostering a workplace culture where everyone genuinely feels they belong and are supported. This requires empathetic leaders who are committed to this task.
We also need to acknowledge that balancing work and personal life can be a significant barrier to career advancement for many people, women included. It is important to create space for people to have a life outside of work without having to sacrifice opportunities for career progression. Promoting good mental health and emphasizing the importance of personal time should be priorities for everyone, regardless of gender.
What do you believe are the best ways individuals can Embrace Equity to collectively impact positive change?
Be sensitive to the barriers to inclusion that people are facing, and find practical ways to remove those barriers. What that looks like will depend on the situation. It could mean accommodating flexible work arrangements, supporting skills training, changing hiring practices to reduce the influence of unconscious bias, mentoring, or advocating for others when we notice inequalities.
What advice do you have for aspiring women IP professionals?
Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion—we all benefit from hearing different points of view. Stay on top of what is happening in your field and continue to develop your skills. Build relationships, not rivalries. Support others in their career development when you can.
What will be the biggest challenge for the next generation of women leaders in the IP profession?
Achieving and sustaining a healthy work-life balance. It is easy to believe that excelling in our professional lives requires us to be constantly accessible, but this can take its toll on our overall well-being and result in burnout. Learning how to set boundaries so that we can prioritize self-care is vital.