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July 3, 2014

Could This Man Be The Next USPTO Director?

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Reports indicate President Obama is poised to tap Phil Johnson as the next Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Currently Senior Vice-President for Intellectual Property Policy & Strategy at Johnson & Johnson, Phil Johnson joined IPI in 2011 at our annual World Intellectual Property Day Forum and spoke on a panel called “Hot Topics in IP.” Click here to watch video of that panel.

That year, the hottest topic was patent reform, and legislation had not only been passed by the Senate but was working its way through the House. That bill would eventually be signed into law in September by President Obama, to be known as the “America Invents Act.”

During the World IP Day panel, Johnson kicked off the discussion by giving an overview of the patent reform legislation, calling it the biggest patent reform bill in 60 years. (Johnson’s remarks begin at 2:20.) Johnson discussed both highlights as well as disappointments in the bill as it stood at that point, but overall said the legislation would make “well-balanced, fairly obvious improvements to the patent system,” and improve patent quality.  

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