Brian’s diverse experiences from nearly twenty-five years practicing law provide a unique background for his work as a true general counsel.He began his career as an Assistant Attorney General and state prosecutor, before working in the commercial litigation department of an Am Law100 firm. From there, Brian served as the Chief Legal Officer of a NASDAQ-listed entertainment company, and started Kaleo Legal in 2008. Brian started Kaleo Legal to offer an innovative, lean approach to the practice of law. Although Brian was named as “Best Lawyer in America” in 2018, 2019, and 2020 for commercial litigation, he spends most of his time handling corporate and commercial transactional work for our clients on a fractional in-house counsel basis.
Years of Experience: 24
Awards & Honors: Best Lawyers Commercial Litigation 2018, 2019, 2020
Bar Admissions: Virginia
As an experienced attorney specializing in corporate and securities law, corporate governance and compliance, Tina has broad experience advising public and private company clients on a broad range of regulatory and transactional matters. After graduating from law school at the University of Virginia, Tina practiced as an in-house corporate and securities attorney at Norfolk Southern Corporation, a Fortune 400 NYSE company, until 2006. Tina then served as an adjunct professor of law at Regent University School of Law, until joining the predecessor of Kaleo Legal. Tina brings strong interpersonal and communication skills to every relationship, allowing her to facilitate better results in communications between management, boards of directors, investors and counterparties. She demonstrates an innate ability to quickly integrate into an organization and add immediate value.
- Tina has extensive experience drafting regulatory disclosure documents including Forms 10-K, Forms 10-Q, proxy statements, Forms 8-K, Forms S-3, Forms S-8, Forms 4, and numerous other SEC disclosure documents.
- Tina has served as advisor for boards of directors of public companies, including as special advisor to the audit committee, and as counsel to directors in their roles as board members and committee chairmen of public companies.
- Tina is responsible for for NYSE and Nasdaq listed company compliance.
- Tina has experience with all areas of compliance and corporate governance, including drafting and implementing policies and education programs, and conducting investigations and reviews.
- Tina is extremely well versed in investor relations, including management of proxy advisory firm recommendations and disclosures.
- Tina has extensive financing experience including seed, angel and follow on rounds of private placements.
- Tina has acquired particular expertise in facilitating corporate structure and strategy decisions, and in counseling growing companies on financing and growth decisions.
- Tina has experience structuring and drafting executive compensation programs.
Billy Poynter focuses his practice on intellectual property law, including patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets; software creation, development, and implementation; IP assessment, creation, and enforcement; and dispute resolution. After graduating from law school at UVA, Billy spent one year practicing at a large firm in Washington, DC, before clerking for The Honorable Alvin A. Schall, US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Before joining Kaleo Legal, he served as the co-chair of the Intellectual Property Litigation practice at Williams Mullen, and the vice-chair of the Intellectual Property Section. Throughout his practice, Billy has represented domestic and international companies of all sizes and types, including startups, mid-sized companies, and Fortune 500 companies, in various industry sectors such as software, retail, manufacturing, telecommunications, and transportation.
Billy is listed in Virginia Super Lawyers, and has been regularly named as Virginia Legal Elite for Intellectual Property by Virginia Business. He has been ranked in Chambers USA since 2014 for Intellectual Property, has been named to Best Lawyers in America since 2015, and has an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell.
Billy serves as the fractional general counsel for several software companies, and has a great deal of experience assisting software providers with their commercial needs, including drafting and negotiating licensing agreements, partner agreements, and services agreements of all kinds. As an extension of the in-house department, Billy supports software sales teams in all aspects of their legal needs, and is an integral part of their achieving sales and revenue quotas on a quarterly and annual basis.
Billy maintains an active transactional practice focusing on other intellectual property issues as well, including:
- Intellectual property evaluation and assessment, including freedom to operate, registrability, and infringement analyses,
- Intellectual property portfolio creation and enforcement,
- Trademark prosecution,
- Patent, trademark, copyright, and software licensing,
- Domain name disputes and UDRP proceedings,
- Drafting and negotiating all types of commercial contracts, and
- Corporate organization.
He assists small companies and startups with intellectual property analysis, creation, registration, and enforcement. He has extensive experience with drafting and negotiating commercial contracts of all kinds. And he has assisted in the acquisition and sale of technology companies for larger-scale clients, especially in the software industry.
Billy also maintains an active litigation practice, as lead and local counsel, in the federal courts of the Eastern District of Virginia. As a litigator, Billy has handled cases involving a variety of technologies, including software, business methods, telecommunications technology, mechanical devices, chemical compositions, and electrical technology. He has litigated cases around the country, including in popular patent litigation jurisdictions such as the Central and Northern Districts of California, the Eastern District of Texas, and the District of Delaware. Billy has particular experience litigating patent, intellectual property, and other cases in the Eastern District of Virginia, also known as the “Rocket Docket,” and he has handled cases in the Alexandria, Richmond, and Norfolk Divisions of the EDVA, as both lead and local counsel. In addition to his work defending clients against claims of patent infringement brought by non-practicing entities, Billy has substantial experience representing clients either bringing intellectual property claims against, or defending against intellectual property claims brought by, direct competitors, and the attendant considerations that direct competition brings to bear in those litigation matters. He is extremely well versed in addressing the e-discovery issues that accompany complex litigation. Billy is a permanent member of the Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference.
Billy maintains membership in the American Bar Association’s Intellectual Property Division, the American Intellectual Property Law Association, and the Federal Circuit Bar Association, in addition to sitting on the committee of the Law Practice Management Division of the Virginia Bar Association. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Norfolk Forum and is a member of the Greater Norfolk Corporation, and he spent ten years as a member of the Board of Directors of the Virginia Opera, including as a member of the Executive Committee. In 2010, Inside Business named Billy to its list of the Hampton Roads “Top 40 Under 40.”
He earned his undergraduate degrees from Washington & Lee University in 1998, a bachelor of science in chemistry and a bachelor of arts in medieval and renaissance studies, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa. He earned his juris doctor from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2002.
Years of Experience: 17
Past Work Experience: Hunton & Williams, Clerk – US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Williams Mullen
Professional Affiliations: ABA, VBA, VSB, DC Bar, FCBA, Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference, FBA
Awards & Honors: Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude, AV Rating from Martindale Hubbell, Best Lawyers, Chambers USA, VA Legal Elite, VA Superlawyers, Top 40 Under 40, Inside Business Entrepreneurial Excellence
Bar Admissions: Virginia, District of Columbia
John Swingle focuses his practice on intellectual property law, including patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets; IP assessment, acquisition, licensing, and enforcement. After graduating from Harvard Law School in 2007, John spent three years in California as an associate in one of the country’s largest IP law firms. More recently, John worked as an associate in Williams Mullen’s Intellectual Property Section.
John has experience in:
- Patent prosecution, including drafting and filing provisional and non-provisional patent applications
- Trademark prosecution
- Drafting and negotiating intellectual property licenses
- Client counseling regarding a wide variety of intellectual property matters, including infringement, invalidity, and commercialization issues; IP portfolio assessment and strategy; and freedom-to-operate searching and analyses
- Preparation of formal opinion letters
- Representing plaintiffs and defendants in connection with intellectual property litigation
He earned his undergraduate degrees from Duke University in 2003, a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science. He earned his juris doctor from Harvard Law School in 2007.
John is admitted to practice law in the states of California, Virginia, and Florida. He is licensed to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
Will Dickinson focuses his practice on building clients’ intellectual property portfolios, providing brand protection and negotiating technology transactions. This includes Will’s fractional general-counsel practice, which focuses on licensing negotiations for fast-paced software sales companies, managing clients’ large trademark portfolios, and augmenting the commercial and intellectual property capabilities of a client’s in-house legal department.
Will has experience in:
- Trademark and copyright prosecution
- Trademark portfolio management and counseling
- Software, ITT, and intellectual property licensing
- Intellectual property litigation
- Trademark Trial and Appeal Board litigation
- Domain-name (UDRP) arbitration
- Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) counseling and registration
- Commercial contracting
- Commercial dispute resolution
Throughout his career, Will has helped clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies with large portfolios, to startups and mid-sized businesses with important intellectual property assets, to state agencies with mission-critical IT systems.
Will has been named among Virginia’s “Legal Elite” by Virginia Business magazine, a “Rising Star” by Virginia Super Lawyers, and a Richmond Times Dispatch Readers’ Choice Lawyer. Prior to joining Kaleo Legal, Will practiced at Williams Mullen, an Am Law 200 law firm headquartered in Richmond, Virginia.
Will received his law degree from Wake Forest University School of Law, where he served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Wake Forest Law Review. He earned his undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University, with a bachelor of arts degree, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa.
Will serves on the Sports Backers President’s Council, on the Wake Forest University School of Law Rose Council, and as a mentor at Startup Virginia. He is a member of the American Bar Association, Virginia Bar Association, Richmond Bar Association, and the Greater Richmond Intellectual Property Law Association.
Shep is not your traditional litigator. He is a true trial lawyer with more than 25 years of experience trying and winning big cases before juries in Hampton Roads and around the country. Shep started his career as an Assistant and then Deputy Commonwealth Attorney in Virginia Beach where he was in court every day, trying thousands of cases. Ultimately, Shep supervised the presentation of all violent crime in Virginia Beach, trying many rape, robbery and murder trials himself. Shep then joined Kaufman and Canoles in Norfolk, Virginia, spending 10 years there as an associate and equity partner in the litigation section. Shep focused on product liability, toxic tort commercial litigation, civil rights litigation, including Section 1983 cases and municipal matters, and personal injury and traumatic brain injury cases. His representations included the defense of police officers in excessive force and wrongful death cases, the defense of hotels and businesses in premises liability cases, and the defense of a video producer in unauthorized use of name and image cases.
Shep then joined McGuireWoods where he continued his product liability and civil rights practice, focusing on the defense of asbestos related mesothelioma and lung cancer cases. For the last 10 years, Shep has served as national coordinating counsel for an American automobile manufacturer, managing the scientific defense of thousands of asbestos-related claims. Shep serves as Daubert/Frye counsel in asbestos litigation and as lead trial counsel throughout the country, obtaining numerous defense verdicts, including in Pennsylvania, Virginia, South Carolina and Arkansas. Shep joined our firm in 2018.
Shauna Barnes provides trusted counsel to companies, with a particular emphasis on highly-regulated industries facing tough choices in the marketplace. She has a decade of experience giving legal advice, serving most recently as General Counsel for Dogfish Head Craft Brewery. In that capacity, Shauna helped launch a distillery, introduce cans to market, and navigate over a dozen strategic distribution partnership changes. She also has extensive experience counseling executive and management teams on legal, compliance and regulatory risks surrounding day-to-day operations, strategic planning, international expansion, product rollouts, and major promotions and marketing campaigns.
Executive teams benefit from Shauna’s experience providing creative solutions to tricky regulatory schemes, including shepherding legislative changes through the statehouse. Shauna has considerable expertise drafting and negotiating commercial agreements, including distribution and supply agreements, project and purchase agreements, and sponsorship and events agreements. She has also worked with lobbyists and trade associations on a continuous basis since 2012, and was the founding member of the Craft Beverage Lawyers Guild.
Shauna was a cum laude graduate of Wake Forest University School of Law and a graduate with distinction from the Pennsylvania State University. After law school, she worked for McDermott Will & Emery in Washington, D.C., providing antitrust counsel to a number of Fortune 500 firms.
Ryan focuses his practice on state and federal court litigation in Virginia and the District of Columbia. Ryan developed his practice at two AmLaw 100 law firms. At Arnold & Porter in Washington, DC, Ryan defended a company involved in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill against class action claims by businesses allegedly injured by the spill. Additionally, he maintained an active pro bono practice, including co-drafting an amicus curiae brief to the United States Supreme Court on behalf of the American Bar Association.
After moving to Norfolk, Ryan joined McGuireWoods’ commercial litigation department, where he represented clients in a wide variety of industries – from Fortune 100 financial institutions to local entrepreneurs – at all levels of the Virginia state and federal court system. For every case, Ryan focused on developing an assertive and effective litigation strategy in line with each client’s business goals, and he continues to do so as a member of Kaleo Legal.
Ryan graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law, where he was a Dillard Fellow for Legal Research & Writing. Prior to attending law school, Ryan earned his B.A. in art history from the College of William & Mary and his M.A. in art history from the University of Delaware. In the course of his art history studies, Ryan held internships at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. and the Guggenheim Foundation in Venice, Italy.
Ryan is a member of the American Bar Association and the Norfolk & Portsmouth Bar Association. He is admitted to practice before the courts of Virginia and the District of Columbia; US District Courts for the Eastern District of Virginia, Western District of Virginia, and the District of Columbia; the US Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia; and the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Years of Experience: 10
Past Work Experience: McGuireWoods LLP, Arnold & Porter LLP
Professional Affiliations: American Bar Association, Norfolk Portsmouth Bar Association
Awards & Honors: Dillard Fellow for Legal Research & Writing
Bar Admissions: Virginia, District of Columbia
Mike’s practice is focused on start-up businesses and entrepreneurs. Following his graduation with honors from the Duke Law School Masters of Law program in Law and Entrepreneurship he has been providing outside counsel services for a wide range of early stage and high-growth clients in the greater Richmond area. He advises and assists business clients with corporate and intellectual property law issues as well as startup companies raising capital through private equity offerings, from pre-seed startup capital to later stage venture capital offerings. In addition he serves as an adjunct professor of law at the University of Richmond where he teaches courses in business and intellectual property law, including Advising the Entrepreneur and Drafting Intellectual Property Transactions.
He is committed to helping clients build their innovative ideas into successful businesses. Mike also serves as a mentor to entrepreneurs across the entrepreneurial ecosystem, volunteering with Startup Virginia, Lighthouse Labs to provide support for the startup community.
Mike received his B.A. from Middlebury College, followed by a Master’s degree from Norwich University before attending the Richmond University School of Law, graduating with honors and awards for excellence in the studies of Intellectual Property.