Press Release

Morrison & Foerster Partner Mark Whitaker Named President of American Intellectual Property Law Association

Premier IP trial lawyer will leverage the association’s expertise to proactively promote constructive changes to advance IP

31 Oct 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C. (October 31, 2016) – Mark L. Whitaker, a partner in Morrison & Foerster’s Intellectual Property Litigation Practice Group in Washington, D.C., has been named president of the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), the leading law association of patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secrets practitioners. Mr. Whitaker assumes the office of President following the annual AIPLA conference in Washington, D.C., which just concluded.

In more than 17 years as an AIPLA member, Mr. Whitaker has served on the board of directors and the executive committee. During his one-year term as president, Mr. Whitaker will focus his priorities on better leveraging the association’s expertise to proactively promote constructive changes to advance IP and to ensure that operational and strategic work is more efficient and focused. The association’s success with promoting gender diversity is a model Mr. Whitaker aspires to replicate in the recruitment and advancement of attorneys of color. He will also preside at meetings of the AIPLA Board of Directors, represent the association at meetings of various national and international organizations, and provide a public voice for the association before the courts, congress, and other government agencies.

In addition to the internal work of the association, the AIPLA has a strong advocacy role and works closely with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Senate and House subcommittees on intellectual property, the executive branch, and the judiciary. The AIPLA also collaborates with IP organizations around the world on patent and trademark harmonization issues, patent quality, and many other issues of mutual interest.

“I am honored to have been elected President of the AIPLA, the premier bar association for IP practitioners,” Mr. Whitaker said. “The coming year promises to be one of continuing change as advances in technology raise new challenges across the global IP landscape. I am delighted to lead the AIPLA in addressing these issues and helping to ensure that our intellectual property system remains strong.”

At Morrison & Foerster, Mr. Whitaker is a patent trial lawyer whose practice is devoted to patent, trademark and trade secrets litigation and counseling. He also represents clients in fast-track IP litigation before the International Trade Commission (ITC) under Section 337. He has successfully represented clients in the medical device, electronics, telecommunications, chemical, and software industries in patent, trade secrets disputes and licensing initiatives.

Mr. Whitaker’s recent cases include winning a trade secrets case at the ITC on behalf of a U.S. manufacturer of large cranes; prevailing at trial and invalidating all four asserted patents for client Acushnet, makers of Titleist Pro V1 golf balls; obtaining dismissals (with prejudice) for a home security company in a multi-patent infringement litigation involving modem industry standards; and serving as counsel on behalf of Research In Motion in its long-running patent infringement dispute with NTP, a patent holding company. He is also a veteran of the U.S. Navy, where he served as a member of the JAG Corps and prosecuted and defended more than 30 trials.

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