I have adopted a hands-on approach to the practice of law. I like to go on the floor of the factory, play the video game—watch my client in action. This allows me to gain a clear understanding of my client’s business and goals, which enables me to provide proactive solutions to issues before they become complex problems.
Connie Powell Nichols is Of Counsel in Gray Reed’s Intellectual Property Department and Professor of Law at Baylor Law School.
Connie majored in biology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a goal to discover a cure for cancer in the Amazon Rain Forest. But instead, she entered into the world of intellectual property law, which much like medical research, is constantly changing and developing.
While attending Indiana University—Bloomington, Nichols completed a three-year fellowship in Diversity Equity & Inclusion (DEI) where she conducted research regarding DEI which included a needs assessment, and developed communications that reflected organizational goals for DEI and developed and implemented programs to achieve the organizational goals. She currently conducts training for state, local and municipal entities on the business case for DEI and development of cohesive messaging as well as implementation plans consistent with commitment of organization.
She also conducts board training for state and local government on ethics, compliance with Freedom of Information Act and state laws, privacy and social media, drafts and develops social media guidelines and audits, drafts and reviews and revises E-commerce documents including terms of service, privacy policies, and ensures compliance with Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule, the Online Protection Privacy Protection Acts, California Consumer Privacy Act, the General Data Protection Regulations.
Connie regularly drafts policies regarding IP ownership in employment policies, reviews marketing, advertising and promotions including drafting sweepstakes and contest rules and regulations, and drafts and reviews consumer product warranties.
After earning her J.D. cum laude from Indiana University School of Law, Bloomington, in 2000, where she served as senior managing editor for the Federal Communications Law Journal, Nichols entered private practice where she practiced intellectual property law, representing Fortune 500 companies and major advertising agencies.
Following her time in private practice, Nichols served as corporate counsel for Blockbuster, Inc., and as corporate counsel for Global Hyatt Corporation where she managed the company’s global intellectual property portfolio and provided support to the company on all intellectual property matters including technology, global privacy, advertising and marketing, and e-commerce.
In May 2008, Connie felt she wanted to make a greater contribution to the legal profession and decided to leave corporate life for academia. At Baylor Law School, Nichols teaches Intellectual Property, Information Privacy, E-commerce and has written articles and made presentations on copyright and trademark infringement, IP issues in advertising and marketing, privacy and the implications of the internet influencing media and politics. She is also the director of the Intellectual Property & Entrepreneurship Clinic.
When not teaching, fun-loving Nichols is mom to a teenage son and can often be found hiking trails at Cameron Park or in other active pursuits. She likes to brag that while working as a roller-skating car hop for Sonic during high school, she set a record for never dropping a tray … a record that still stands.