Business & Leadership

Michelle Kwok Lee, new director of the United States Patents Office (USPTO)

Sworn in as USPTO Director on March 12th 2015, Michelle K. Lee, who has co-founded Chief IP Counsels (ChIPs), a networking organization for female patent attorneys, has been cited as one of the top 100 most influential women in the Silicon Valley.

Sworn in as USPTO Director on March 12th 2015, Michelle K. Lee, who has co-founded Chief IP Counsels (ChIPs), a networking organization for female patent attorneys, has been cited as one of the top 100 most influential women in the Silicon Valley.


First woman to ever hold the position of Director of the USPTO, Michelle K. Lee began her career as a clerk for federal District Court Judge Vaughn Walker. She graduated from Stanford Law School and as a private practice attorney specialized in both counselling high-technology companies and patent litigation.

The first generation Chinese-American also served as Google’s first Head of Patents and Patent Strategy. During her nine year tenure, she participated in building the company’s impressive portfolio of about 10,500 patents.

I am a long time user of the patent system,” she insists, which is understandable when you find out that, once an engineer, she holds a degree from MIT. Lee was also a computer scientist at Hewlett-Packard Research Laboratories.

E.S.

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