A paper written by Brittany Lee-Richardson, a 2012 graduate of William & Mary Law School, was chosen as the winning submission in the inaugural Intellectual Property Student Writing Competition sponsored by Georgia State University College of Law. She presented the paper, titled "Judgment for Federalism: Why the Right of Publicity Should Be a Federal Right," at the 2012 Corporate IP Institute at Georgia State University in October. The award includes a $3,000 cash prize.
Lee-Richardson is a legal postgraduate fellow at the National Association of Broadcasters in Washington, D.C.
The paper, she said, "analyzes and compares various rights of publicity cases, as well as discusses legal problems that the right of publicity presents as a state-based right." It also addresses counter arguments to making the right of publicity a federal right and concludes by providing recommendations on what a federal right of publicity law should include.
Lee-Richardson wrote the paper as part of an independent research course that she completed with Professor Trotter Hardy. She credits him with encouraging her to enter the paper into the competition and for his helpful critiques of early drafts.
"Brittany worked with incredible energy and perseverance on her paper," said Hardy. "She voluntarily wrote more drafts and did more work than was required because she was so strongly motivated to succeed. I've no doubt that these qualities will result in many future successes for her as well."
The Corporate IP Institute included the paper in conference materials. Lee-Richardson said that she plans to submit the paper for publication by an academic journal.