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In each issue of our newsletter, people from our firm introduce themselves personally. This time, it is the turn of Ann-Cathrin Tönnes from our Cologne office.

I was born in Duisburg, but after only four years, I (or rather, my parents) moved to Münster. So maybe you can say that I combine Ruhr area charm and Münsterland down-to-earthness.

Although Münster is a great city and I always enjoy returning there for visits, I decided after graduating from high school not to study in my hometown, which is popular with students. I was influenced in this decision not so much by my father, who drew a 100 km radius around Münster for his children's choice of study location - presumably to rule out Sunday looting of the family fridge - but by my own desire to "see something different for a change".

For a short time, I was enrolled at another location of this society, namely Freiburg, but decided at the last minute to exchange the Black Forest view from my apartment for the one of the gray Neumarkt in Cologne. A decision that - to the astonishment of many - I do not regret, because the warmth of Cologne infected me immediately.

I can no longer say exactly why I chose to study law. However, I was enthusiastic about the lectures right from the start. I was particularly taken with the field of intellectual property law during my studies. That's why I also dealt with this subject during my master's studies in London and my legal clerkship (e.g. at the German Patent and Trademark Office in Munich). I completed my legal training in my current team at FGvW, where I then returned after a detour to an IP boutique in Düsseldorf.

What appeals to me most about IP is the variety of legal topics and the fact that the legal norms in this area still leave a lot of room for interpretation and argumentation. As a result, creative thinking is often required. I also like the fact that this is an area of law that you can "touch" (anyone who knows our offices on the second floor at our Cologne location knows what I'm talking about) and that new issues are constantly arising as a result of economic as well as technological progress.

Recently, for example, I read the book "The Metaverse - And How It Will Revolutionize Everything" by Matthew Ball. This vision of the future - which large tech companies in particular are "dreaming up" - gives rise to exciting new implications for intellectual property protection. However, even at 32 years old, reading it already made me feel a bit old.

In my free time, I like to be out in nature and especially in the mountains - hiking or skiing. In this respect, Freiburg might have been a better choice for a place to study.

I also like to travel. That's why "Couchsurfing in Iran" by Stephan Orth is now on my list as a new read. Since I recently explored South America and India and my partner is Persian, the plan was for him to show me his home country next year. I have already started learning Farsi and hope to put this plan into action in the not too distant future.

1:1. This is how we work together. You decide upon a competent partner; he/she will then remain your point of contact. > more