Indiana University Bloomington

Practitioner-in-Residence Speaks on Global In-House Practice for Beam Suntory

The Center for IP Research was pleased to have Chris Mackey (’07) back in Bloomington to speak to a full room of IP students as part of our Practitioner-in-Residence series. Chris has served as Senior Counsel and Global Director for Intellectual Property at Beam Suntory, the third largest premium spirits company in the world, since 2015. He manages more than 6,000 global trademark applications and registrations for the well-known brand, which produces Jim Beam® and over 75 other adult beverages.


One of the most iconic trademarks Chris gets to enforce globally is the red wax tendrils that top Maker’s Mark® whisky. The wax tendrils mark alone has three registrations in the United States—one each for the single, double, or triple-dipped top.


One of the purposes of the Practitioner-in-Residence series is to allow students to engage with professionals across many IP practice areas. Because Chris spent his early career working for an international IP law firm, he was also able to address student questions that pertained to some of the differences between working as outside global IP counsel and working as in-house global IP counsel. Chris also offered a piece of advice based on his successful experience—become the go-to expert on one particular aspect of IP at your first job.

Many thanks to Chris Mackey for an excellent discussion!


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