Alan is employed as a Legal Adviser by the Scotch Whisky Association, the Edinburgh based trade association of the Scotch Whisky industry, which is responsible for the protection and promotion of Scotch Whisky around the world.
Alan holds an honours degree in law from the University of Glasgow. He subsequently trained as a litigation solicitor, before becoming the partner in a Glasgow law firm responsible for a range of civil litigation and criminal defence cases. He also advised technology start-up companies and was a co-organizer of the Scottish branch of the First Tuesday technology networking forum.
Motivated by the opportunity to work in an industry vital to Scotland’s economy, Alan left private practice in 2003 to join the Scotch Whisky Association’s in-house legal team to specialize in IP litigation. He is responsible for the legal protection of Scotch Whisky in a number of countries across the world and has dealt with several applications to register Scotch Whisky as a geographical indication. His work also involves the supervision of litigation, trademark oppositions and investigations, and briefing officials and politicians on legal protection issues. He is currently undertaking post-graduate studies in international dispute resolution.