April L. Besl


More of a partner than a legal adviser to her clients, April focuses her practice on intellectual property matters, including trademarks, copyrights, social media, Internet law, advertising, design patents, and trade secrets. She services a large and diverse portfolio of trademarks and copyrights, domestic and worldwide, for a variety of clients ranging from Fortune 100 companies to individual entrepreneurs and has been recognized by WTR 1000 since 2021 and by Patexia in 2022 as a Top 1% Attorney in Trademark Prosecution. During her time as leader of the Trademarks practice group, April has led the team to unprecedented growth and success. The team has received multiple national recognitions, including a national Best Lawyers ranking and expanded rankings from World Trademark Review. 

She has experience assisting clients with emerging issues related to the impact of social media, the web and technology on their business and marketing strategies. April helps clients protect and enforce their trademarks, copyrights and other intellectual property from misuse via social networking sites, search engine optimization strategies, and keywords, as well as against misuse on mobile devices and other emerging technologies. In addressing these evolving issues and technologies, she provides a direct, strategic and thoughtful approach tailored to the culture and goals of each individual client.

While April believes in working with both sides of a matter to find collaborative solutions to legal matters facing her clients, she knows when and how to vigorously defend her clients’ rights.  She frequently appears in federal court and before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board to defend clients’ non-patent intellectual property rights. She has successfully resolved cases in favor of her clients including in multi-million dollar intellectual property trademark disputes, Digital Millennium Copyright Act disputes, copyright ownership disputes, and licensing disputes.

Clients appreciate April’s personable style and her responsive communication.  She has been called “a pleasure to work with” and a “trademark guru” by her clients and peers. She approaches issues holistically – from both a legal and business perspective.  Her family’s business and education in business management and organizational leadership enable her to see the bigger picture when a client is facing a trademark-related issue.

April served as the president of CincyIP, an organization of intellectual property professionals from around the region, for an unprecedented five year term before serving as past president in 2017.  She currently sits on the board of CincyIP as an elected member in her third term. She is also a member of the Trademark Law & Litigation Committee of the Intellectual Property Owners association and a second-time member of the Leadership Development Committee of the International Trademark Association. April is a member of the Women United through the United Way (where she previously served as Chair of the Steering Committee) and a member of the Women’s Leadership Roundtable through ArtsWave. In addition, was the founder and chair of CincyBrand, a highly successful conference for legal practitioners, marketers and business owners on the subject of branding and licensing that first debuted in April 2014, which will be making its return following COVID.


  • University of Dayton School of Law  (J.D., cum laude, 2007)
    • Walter H. Rice Moot Court Competition, finalist
    • Saul H. Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition, competitor
    • CALI Awards for Excellence in Copyright, Trademark, and Cyberspace Law
  • Miami University  (B.S., 2004)
    • Management, Organizational Leadership Specialization

Bar Admissions

  • Ohio

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio


  • C-Change, Class 11
  • Cincinnati Bar Association
  • Intellectual Property Owners Association, Trademark Law & Litigation Committee
  • CincyIP 
    • Board member (2018 - Present)
    • Past president (2017) 
    • President (2012 - 2016) 
    • Interim President (2012)
    • Vice president (2011 - 2012)
  • Women United (formerly known as WINGs) (2013 - Present)
    • Steering Committee (2018 - 2021); Chair (2020-2021)
    • Women’s Leadership Roundtable Member, Artswave (2022-Present)
    • Adjunct Professor of IP Drafting Course, Northern Kentucky University (2023-Present)
  • International Trademark Association, member of the Leadership Development Committee (2022-Present), former member of U.S. Subcommittee of the Non-Traditional Marks and Law Firm Committees
  • CincyBrand, Planning Committee, chair (2014 - Present)
  • Pro Bono Partnership, volunteer and speaker (2016 - Present)
  • Ursuline Academy Mock Trial, coach (2012 - 2019)
  • Warren County Mock Trial High School Competition Judge (2021-Present)
  • 100 Wise Women, Wise Woman (2017)
  • Boardway Bound, Class 1 (2010 - 2011)
  • WE Lead Class 13 Graduate (2018 - 2019)


  • Peer Review Rated AV in Martindale-Hubbell
  • Ohio Rising Stars® 
    • For Intellectual Property (2016 - 2022)
  • World Trademark Review’s edition of WTR 1000 Bronze Tier (2021) Silver Tier (2022- Present)
  • Leading Lawyers Power 100, Cincy Magazine For Intellectual Property (2021- Present)
  • Top 1% of Attorneys in Trademark Prosecution, Patexia (2022)