The Michelson 20MM Foundation and The Michelson Institute for Intellectual Property (Michelson IP) are thrilled to welcome a significant addition to our team, Chinwe Ohanele, Senior Program Manager, Michelson IP. An accomplished attorney, serial entrepreneur, and content junkie, Chinwe will leverage her experience in business and intellectual property law to close the IP educational gap.

Chinwe’s path towards intellectual property law originated with the first-hand realization of how profoundly IP can impact a business’ activities. While maintaining her pragmatic day job, Chinwe also supported an online magazine as they restructured their business and conducted a comprehensive trademark search. That early taste of how intellectual property can impact a business’ activities was just the beginning, and soon Chinwe began volunteering with several organizations performing IP-associated tasks.

Chinwe’s commitment to empowering entrepreneurs and creators led her to advise African startups on the legal implications of domesticating and raising capital in the United States through her work as a volunteer with the African Technology Foundation. Additionally, she played a pivotal role in revising an Errors and Omissions Policy for a first-of-its-kind  insurance product in the Nigerian film and television industry. This policy later facilitated international acquisitions of Nollywood titles by Netflix.

In 2018, Chinwe, alongside a team of entrepreneurs, organized a comic book convention in Lagos, Nigeria, in partnership with comic book ecosystem leaders such as Comics Republic, Peda Studios, and YouNeek Studios to launch UNICON. That experience, however, is what served as the tipping point of Chinwe’s personal and professional trajectory. Recognizing the profound impact that intellectual property laws and frameworks can have on creative and cultural industries, Chinwe made the bold decision to open her own practice, focusing on IP law. Driven by more than a passion for intellectual property law, Chinwe sought to make an impact on the lives of entrepreneurs and innovators.

As the Senior Program Manager for Michelson IP, Chinwe will marry her commitment to foster success among entrepreneurs, innovators, and creators with our mission of supporting budding inventors and entrepreneurs—no matter where they are in their journey.

In addition to her IP experience, Chinwe is also a thought leader and educator. She not only founded the Chinwe Law Firm, a boutique legal practice offering business and IP legal services, but also she shared her insights on the industry through her influential blog, The Content Biz. Chinwe is also an adjunct professor at USC Gould’s Law School and her commitment to disseminating knowledge extends to hosting trainings and workshops as well as speaking at conferences. She holds a Doctor of Law from Loyola Law School and Bachelor of Science in Economics and Philosophy from University of the Pacific.

Please join us in welcoming Chinwe!

Michelson 20MM is a private, nonprofit foundation working toward equity for underserved and historically underrepresented communities by expanding access to educational and employment opportunities, increasing affordability of educational programs, and ensuring the necessary supports are in place for individuals to thrive. To do so, we work in the following verticals: Digital Equity, Intellectual Property, Smart Justice, Student Basic Needs, and Open Educational Resources (OER). Co-chaired and funded by Alya and Gary Michelson, Michelson 20MM is part of the Michelson Philanthropies network of foundations.

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