Kathi Vidal was confirmed by the United States Senate as Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and as Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Kathi will lead the USPTO’s 13,000+ employees and its nearly $4 billion budget. She will also serve as the principal advisor to the President of the United States and the administration, through the Secretary of Commerce, on all intellectual property policy matters.

Ms. Vidal is highly qualified by education and experience.  She received her B.S. from Binghamton University in 1990 and her M.S. in electrical engineering from Syracuse University in 1992. She received her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School in 1996, where she was editor-in-chief of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review.

Before her appointment as USPTO Director, she worked as an intellectual property litigating attorney for 25 years with a litigation powerhouse in California, Winston & Strawn, where she was a partner.

Ms. Vidal said the right things during her confirmation hearing:  “I have seen our intellectual property system at its best: incentivizing research and development that leads to new technologies and improvements to existing technology,” said Kathi when testifying before the Senate. “I have also seen that we can do better—that we can work together to build an intellectual property system that is more predictable, reliable, and transparent.” Kathi noted that she is “prepared for the challenges we face” and is committed to strengthening our intellectual property system to become one “in which the American people and our inventors, creators, and investors will have even more confidence.”

I look forward to seeing a fellow University of Pennsylvania alumna succeed at the helm of a very important government agency.

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