PALO ALTO, Calif. (May 6, 2009) – Morrison & Foerster announced today that James Pooley, a litigation partner in the firm’s Palo Alto office, was nominated by the Obama Administration to become Deputy Director General at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). His appointment is subject to confirmation by the member states of WIPO. His tenure is scheduled to begin this November.
WIPO is an agency of the United Nations, established by international treaty in 1967. It comprises 184 member countries and is headquartered in Geneva. Operating on the principle that respect for intellectual property ownership advances economic benefits that derive from innovation and invention, WIPO’s mission is to promote the protection, understanding, and development of IP rights worldwide.
“We are delighted that our partner Jim Pooley has been selected for a leadership role at WIPO,” said Keith Wetmore, chair of Morrison & Foerster. “Jim’s breadth of wisdom and understanding of intellectual property law is unparalleled. WIPO could not have selected a more knowledgeable and judicious IP lawyer to help lead the organization.”
“I am honored to be nominated for this important post, where I can help advance the agenda for efficient and effective global patent protection,” said Mr. Pooley. “I have thoroughly enjoyed my years at Morrison & Foerster, working within one of the preeminent IP practices worldwide. I look forward to maintaining my relationship with the firm and with many of my colleagues, and practicing with them again in the future.”
Mr. Pooley earned his law degree from Columbia School of Law, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar, and his undergraduate degree, with honors, from Lafayette College.
He began his legal career in 1973, and was one of the first lawyers to practice modern IP law in Silicon Valley. He built a stellar reputation through his handling of a wide range of patent, trademark, and copyright cases in state and federal courts, as well as before the International Trade Commission. An expert in trade secrets, Mr. Pooley authored a 1997 treatise that is considered the standard on trade secret law.
Mr. Pooley is the immediate past President of the American Intellectual Property Law Association. He is also president of the National Inventors Hall of Fame. He joined Morrison & Foerster in 2007.
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