BAR FIGHT: The trademark skirmish between Gucci and Guess Inc. offered up a side dish last week when the luxury firm revealed it recently fired an in-house lawyer after learning he wasn’t an active member of any state bar. According to court documents filed Friday, Gucci America Inc. terminated Jonathan Moss on March 1. Gucci said it discovered in January that Moss’ status with the California bar had been inactive for the whole of his seven-year run as legal counsel with the firm. Guess has sought access to Moss’ communications regarding a trademark infringement lawsuit Gucci brought against it in U.S. District Court in Manhattan last year. Gucci’s disclosure came in a memo backing a motion that the attorney-client privilege should still apply to his involvement in the case. In the memo, Gucci argues Moss is a graduate of Fordham University School of Law and passed the California state bar exam in 1993. In what the company’s lawyer called a “ministerial” change, Moss voluntarily switched his status with the bar from “active” to “inactive” in 1996 because the latter was less expensive to maintain. In invoking attorney-client privilege, Gucci argued that Moss was still a member of the bar despite the status change and that he has been a member of the bar for two of California’s federal courts since 1994. According to the memo, Gucci hired Moss in 2002 in a nonlawyer position and promoted him to in-house legal counsel the next year. The company said it placed him on administrative leave in January after learning of his bar status and later fired him with cause after he admitted he had not been forthcoming. Gucci’s attorney said the company had no comment. — Matthew Lynch
FASHION’S TURN: Martha Stewart just can’t seem to get enough fashion. Today’s edition of “The Martha Stewart Show” will have Proenza Schouler designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for a tie-dye demo and showing of their spring collection. On Wednesday, Elle editor in chief Robbie Myers will join Stewart for a “designers to watch” segment and, on April 30, André Leon Talley will literally break bread with her — making brioche — and chat about his show, “America’s Next Top Model.” — Amy Wicks
NEW FACES: WSJ. Magazine has hired Jolie Wernette-Horn as director of design, succeeding Alex Grossman. Wernette-Horn most recently served as deputy art director of Harper’s Bazaar. Meanwhile, Shape magazine is staffing up on the digital end. Marty Munson, from Hearst Digital and former deputy editor of Marie Claire, is coming to Shape as digital content director, a new position. The American Media Inc. title hired digital brand director Robin Keller back in January. — A.W.
This story first appeared in the April 6, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.