Christa Brown-Sanford

Deputy Department Chair - Intellectual Property (Firmwide) Partner


P: +1.214.953.6824 F: +1.214.661.4824
Christa Sanford

Christa Sanford is the firmwide Deputy Chair of the IP Department. She partners with her clients on intellectual property matters and serves as a trusted IP counselor. Ms. Sanford provides guidance on patent procurement, patent portfolio development, patent litigation, and patent licensing, particularly involving telecommunications, blockchain, electronics, artificial intelligence, semiconductors, software, personal mobility, and other cutting-edge technologies. Ms. Sanford has assisted companies in developing and managing their patent portfolios and generating revenue from their intellectual property assets through licensing campaigns. While leading licensing efforts for companies, she continues to provide counsel and advice on patent procurement and litigation exposure.

Actively involved within Baker Botts, Ms. Sanford serves on the Diversity Committee, the Technology Sector Committee, the Patent Practice Committee, and the Technology Editorial Committee.

In addition to her involvement within Baker Botts, Ms. Sanford serves in the community on the Emerging Leader Board for Southern Methodist University's Dedman School of Law and on the Boards of the Dallas Children's Theater and First Baptist Academy and is an active member of the Junior League of Dallas. Within the Junior League of Dallas, Ms. Sanford has previously served as New Member Chair, the 2013-2014 Membership Vice President, and as the 2016-2017 Development Vice President. She has also counseled pro bono clients on trademark registration, copyright registration, and copyright infringement matters. Ms. Sanford is an adjunct professor at SMU's Dedman School of Law, where she teaches patent licensing and enforcement, in addition to patent prosecution courses.

Related Experience

  • Multinational telecommunications equipment company – drafting and prosecuting patent applications relating to wireless technologies, personal mobility, collaboration, communications equipment and devices, cloud computing, and big data; managing several patent review committees to develop the strategic direction of the company’s patent portfolio
  • Multinational cloud security company – analysis of existing patent portfolio related to communication techniques and data management and strategic development of the portfolio in various technological areas, including security
  • National energy provider – negotiating and drafting technology transaction agreements for joint development and collaboration efforts
  • Worldwide networking company – assessing and managing third party assertions and related internal investigations; counsel in various aspects of IP and business strategy
  • Aviation and defense contractor – analysis of technology area and development of patent filing strategy for the business
  • National retail energy provider – development and execution of patent filing strategy and management of the patent portfolio related to energy management solutions
  • National financial institution – development of patent licensing strategy and lead counsel in patent license negotiations
  • Start-up healthcare technology provider – development and implementation of patent filing strategy
  • Multinational telecommunications equipment provider – defense counsel in a patent infringement case involving power conversion technology
  • National banking institution – development and management of a worldwide patent portfolio
  • Multinational telecommunications equipment provider – counsel in license negotiations involving standards based technology and patent pools
  • Multinational wireless service provider – defense of multiple patent infringement cases involving wireless communications. In one of the matters, secured summary judgment of non-infringement before trial and secured unenforceability determination of the asserted patent in a subsequent bench trial. In another one of the matters, secured a stipulation of non-infringement based on the claim construction. On appeal of this matter to the Federal Circuit, secured a summary affirmance of the district court's dismissal.
  • Surveillance equipment company – drafted and prosecuted patent application submitted through Accelerated Examination program at the Patent and Trademark Office. Secured issued patent seven months from the filing date of the application.
  • Multinational telecommunications equipment provider – counsel in inter partes reexamination involving asserted patents in patent litigation, which resulted in a final rejection of all claims
  • Creditor in bankruptcy proceeding – counsel in license negotiations involving creditor as a third-party beneficiary to the license agreement
  • Large industrial equipment company – counsel in license negotiations involving patented technology leading to realizable revenue from intellectual property assets
  • Multinational telecommunications equipment provider – defense of a patent infringement case involving Internet routing and wireless communication resulting in a settlement for the client
  • Educational software company – patent infringement suit against a competitor resulting in a settlement for the client
  • Multinational telecommunications equipment provider – defensive patent studies regarding the applicability of third-party patents to products of the client
  • Multinational software company – analysis and categorization of its intellectual property portfolio
  • International optical networking company – drafting and prosecuting patent applications relating to optical networking and optical networking components

Awards & Community

Recognized as a "Most Influential Black Lawyer" by Savoy Magazine, 2018

Recognized as a "Top Woman Lawyer" by the Texas Diversity Council, 2018

Recognized as a "Minority Business Leader" by the Dallas Business Journal, 2018

Recognized as a "Next Generation Lawyer" by The Legal 500 U.S., 2017 & 2018

Named one of the "Best Lawyers" in Dallas by D Magazine, 2016, 2017 & 2018

Recognized in the Dallas Business Journal's list of “40 under 40”, 2016

"Young Leader Award" presented by the Dallas Women's Foundation, 2015

Recognized as a Texas Super Lawyer-Rising Star (Thomson Reuters), 2010, 2015, 2016, 2017 & 2018

Recognized as an "Up-And-Coming 100" and "Up-And-Coming 50 Women" by Texas Super Lawyer-Rising Star (Thomson Reuters), 2018


Publications, Speeches & Presentations