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Boston Patent Law Association

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Boston Patent Law Association
File:Boston Patent Law Association Logo.png
TypeProfessional organization
FocusPatent, Trademarks, Copyright, Intellectual Property and Licensing
  • One Batterymarch Park, Suite 101 Quincy, MA 02169-7454
Coordinates42°13′48″N 71°01′33″W / 42.2301°N 71.0257°W / 42.2301; -71.0257Coordinates: 42°13′48″N 71°01′33″W / 42.2301°N 71.0257°W / 42.2301; -71.0257
Fatal error: The format of the coordinate could not be determined. Parsing failed.

Area served
Boston and surrounding areas
c. 1,000
Key people
President Rory P. Pheiffer
President-Elect Deirdre E. Sanders

Founded in Boston in 1924, the Boston Patent Law Association (BPLA) is an organization of intellectual property professionals that has a membership of over 1000 individuals. Primarily located in the jurisdiction of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit,[1] the BPLA’s members are a diverse population of attorneys and other professionals in the field of intellectual property law, encompassing trademark, patent, and copyright laws.


The BPLA, through its volunteer Board of Governors and various committees, provides the IP community educational and social opportunities to exchange information relevant to current patent, trademark and copyright laws. Additionally, the BPLA offers commentary and analysis on legislation that affects the profession.[2]

Officers and Board of Governors[edit]

The Board of Governors is a volunteer group of men and women consisting of well educated attorney and non-attorney intellectual property professionals who provide leadership to the BPLA. For 2018, the Board of Governors consists of the following.[3]

Position Name Company Currently Working For
President Rory P. Pheiffer[4] Nutter McClennen & Fish LLP[5]
President-Elect Deirdre E. Sanders[6] Hamilton, Brook, Smith & Reynolds, P.C.[7]
Vice President Michael Bergman[8] Bergman and Song LLP [9]
Treasurer Daniel W. Young[10] Wolf, Greenfield & Sacks, P.C.[11]
Secretary Keith Toms[12] McCarter & English, LLP[13]
Board Member and Past President Monica Grewal[14] WilmerHale[15]
Board Member Joshua M. Dalton[16] Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP[17]
Board Member Rachel L. Emsley[18] Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP[19]
Board Member Rebecca McNeill[20] McNeill Baur PLLC[21]

Past Presidents[edit]

In the history of the BPLA, there have been 66 acting Presidents. Since 1950, Presidents have been chosen for a single 1 one-year term. The President-Elect automatically assumes the position of President of the BPLA at the end of the current President’s Term.[22]

Frederick Perry Fish 1924–1929 Frederick I. Emery 1930–1932
Odin Roberts 1933–1934 Nathan Heard 1935–1941
George P. Dike 1942–1946 Herbert W. Kenway 1947–1949
Hector M. Holmes 1950–1951 Melvin R. Jenney 1952–1953
Merwin F. Ashley 1954–1955 Cedric W. Porter 1956–1957
Robert I. Thompson 1958–1959 W. Bigelow Hall 1960–1961
Herbert P. Kenway 1962–1963 William R. Hulbert 1964–1965
Elmer J. Gorn 1966–1967 John D. Woodbury 1967–1968
Oliver W. Hayes 1968–1969 Joseph Weingarten 1969–1970
Clarence S. Lyon 1970–1971 Robert A. Cesari 1971–1972
Robert A. Wise 1972–1973 Charles Hieken 1973–1974
Robert F. O'Connell 1974–1975 David Wolf 1975–1976
Willis M. Ertman 1976–1977 Leo R. Reynolds 1977–1978
W. Hugo Liepmann 1978–1979 Martin J. O'Donnell 1979–1980
William D. Roberson 1980–1981 David G. Conlin 1981–1982
Jerry Cohen 1982–1983 Jacob N. Erlich 1983–1984
Faith F. Driscoll 1984–1985 Steven J. Henry 1985–1986
Andrew T. Karnakis 1986–1987 John H. Skenyon 1987–1988
George W. Neuner 1988–1989 Edward J. Coleman 1989–1990
Frank P. Porcelli 1990–1991 Ronald J. Paglierani 1991–1992
A. Jason Mirabito 1992–1993 John L. DuPré 1993–1994
Ronald L. Kransdorf 1994–1995 Gregory D. Williams 1995–1996
Susan G.L. Glovsky 1996–1997 Timothy A. French 1997–1998
Walter F. Dawson 1998–1999 David J. Thibodeau, Jr. 1999–2000
Thomas J. Engellenner 2000–2001 William G. Gosz 2001–2002
Peter C. Lando 2002–2003 Peter F. Corless 2003–2004
Doreen M. Hogle 2004–2005 Ingrid A. Beattie 2005–2006
Lee Carl Bromberg 2006–2007 Leslie Meyer-Leon 2007–2008
Mark B. Solomon 2008–2009 Lisa Adams 2009–2010
Grant Houston 2010–2011 Neil Ferraro 2011–2012
Joseph M. Maraia 2012–2013 Donna Meuth 2013-2014
Gregory Sieczkiewicz 2014-2015 Erik Belt 2015-2016
Monica Grewal 2016-2017


There are four different types of members in the BPLA.[23]

  1. Attorney Members: To qualify for Attorney Member status an individual must be an attorney in good standing whose practice focuses on intellectual property law, especially in the areas of patent, trademark and copyright law.
  2. Non-Attorney Members: In order to obtain Non-Attorney Member status an individual must meet one of the following criteria: (1) the individual must be registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and able to act for an applicant before the Patent Office, (2) the individual must be a current law school student enrolled at an accredited law school, (3) paralegals who are employed by firms or companies who are members of the BPLA and who provide intellectual property based services or (4) individuals who are interested in intellectual property law and who work for organizations that participate in patent, trademark, copyright or other areas of intellectual property law.
  3. Student Members: (a) Persons who are not lawyers, but are regularly enrolled as candidates for a professional law degree in a law school approved by the Association of American Law Schools and would be otherwise qualified for membership, if a member of the Bar, (b) persons who are not lawyers, but are regularly enrolled as candidates for an associate, bachelor, or masters level degree at an accredited 2 or 4 year college or university, or (c) persons, who are not lawyers, but have graduated with a professional law degree from a law school approved by the Association of American Law Schools within two years of graduation and would be otherwise qualified for membership, if a member of the Bar, shall be eligible for Student membership. Student Members shall have all the privileges of the BPLA except those of voting and holding office.
  4. Life Members: Life Members can be either Attorney or Non-Attorney members but who have reached the age of 70 or above. Life Members enjoy the same membership privileges they had before becoming Life Members.

Annual events[edit]

  • BPLA Annual Judges Dinner: Held Annually in honor of the Federal Judiciary by the BPLA, this event has a distinguished speaker and the annual BPLA Distinguished Public Service Award is given out to that year’s winner.
  • BPLA Annual Writing Competition: Currently enrolled law school students are invited to participate in the BPLA's Annual Writing Competition. Each year students are asked to submit papers relating to relevant topics impacting intellectual property law.


The standing committees of the BPLA include the following:[24]

  • Activities and Public Relations
  • AIPLA Moot Court
  • Amicus
  • Antitrust
  • Biotechnology
  • Business & Marketplace
  • Case Law
  • Chemical Patent Practice
  • Computer Law
  • Contested Matters
  • Copyright Law
  • Ethics
  • In-House Practice
  • International and Foreign Practice
  • International Trade Commission (ITC)
  • Invented Here!
  • Law School
  • Licensing
  • Litigation
  • Medical Devices
  • New Lawyers, Law Students, Patent Agents & Technology Specialists
  • Patent Law
  • Patent Office Practice
  • Pro Bono
  • Trade Secrets Law
  • Trademarks and Unfair Competition

Amicus briefs submitted by BPLA[edit]

Amicus briefs submitted by BPLA:[25]

  • Helsinn Healthcare S.A. v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA , Inc., et al., - April 2, 2018[26]
  • Oil States Energy Services, LLC v. Greene's Energy Group, LLC - August 31, 2017[27]
  • Helsinn v. Teva Pharmaceuticals - July 14, 2017[28]
  • WI-FI One, LLC, v. Broadcom Corporation - February 23, 2017[29]
  • Impression Products, Inc. v. Lexmark International, Inc. - February 23, 2017[30]
  • Samsung Electronics Co., LTD., Samsung Electronics America, Inc., and Samsung Telecommunications America LLC v. Apple Inc. - August 5, 2016[31]
  • Sequenom, Inc., v. Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc., and DNA Diagnostics Center, Inc. - April 20, 2016[32]
  • Chris E. Maling v. Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP - August 25, 2015[33]
  • I/P Engine, Inc. v. AOL, Inc. et al. - June 15, 2015
  • Highmark Inc., v. AllCare Health Management Systems, Inc. - January 24, 2014 [34]
  • Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics - March 14, 2013 [35]
  • Jenzabar, Inc. v. Long Bow Group, Inc. - December 22, 2011[36]
  • Association of Molecular Pathology v. United States Patent and Trademark Office - October 29, 2010[37]
  • Therasense v. Becton Dickinson - August 2, 2010[38]
  • ACLU v. Myriad - January 13, 2010[39]
  • In re Bilski - August 5, 2009[40]
  • In re Engage - June 12, 2008[41]
  • In re Bilski - April 7, 2008[42]
  • MedImmune v. Genentech - July 25, 2006[43]
  • Laboratory Corp. of America v. Metabolite Labs., Inc. - February 6, 2006[44]
  • Merck & Co. v. Teva Pharma. USA, Inc. - September 22, 2005[45]
  • Phillips v. AWH Corp. - September 17, 2004[46]

USPTO comments submitted by BPLA[edit]

United States Patent and Trademark Office comments submitted by BPLA:[47]

March 16, 2015[edit]

Comments on 2014 Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility in response to request for comments at 79 Fed. Reg. 74618 (Dec. 16, 2014)[48]

April 24, 2014[edit]

Comments on Changes to Require Identification of Attributable Owner, in response to requests for comments at 79 Fed. Reg. 4105[49]

January 30, 2012[edit]

Comments in support of Boston as a location for a USPTO satellite office,[50] in response to request for comments at Federal Register Doc. 2011-30717[51] (November 28, 2011)

March 8, 2010[edit]

Comments on Enhancement in the Quality of Patents,[52] in response to request for comment at 74 Federal Regulation 65093[53] (December 9, 2009), the period for comments having been extended to March 8, 2010 at 75 Fed. Reg. 5040[54] (February 1, 2010)

February 26, 2010[edit]

Comments on BPAI Rules of Practice in Ex Parte Appeals,[55] in Response to Requests for Comment at 74 Fed. Reg. 67987[56] (Dec. 22, 2009)

November 25, 2009[edit]

Comments on Patent Ombudsman Pilot Program,[57] in Response to Request for Comments at 74 Fed. Reg. 55212[58] (Oct. 27, 2009)

Recipients of the Boston Patent Law Association Distinguished Public Services Award[edit]

2017 Arthur J Gajarsa

Circuit Judge[59]

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

2016 Kimberly A. Moore[60]

Circuit Judge

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

2015 John Greaney[61]

Chief Justice

Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts

2014 David McGillivray

Race Director of the BAA Boston Marathon

Founder of DMSE, Inc

2013 Mark L. Wolf[62]

District Judge

Chief Judge, 2006 - 2012

United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

2012 Marianne B. Bowler[63]

Magistrate Judge

United States District Court of Massachusetts[64]

2011 Alan David Lourie[65][66]

Circuit Judge

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit[67]

2010 Rya W. Zobel[68]

District Judge

United States District Court of Massachusetts

2009 Richard Gaylore Stearns[69]

District Judge

United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

2008 Patti B. Saris[70]

District Judge

United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

2007 William G. Young[71]

District Judge

United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

See also[edit]

  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Bar Association
  • Intellectual property organizations


  1. http://www.ca1.uscourts.gov/
  2. http://www.bpla.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=4
  3. http://www.bpla.org/?page=5
  4. "Rory P. Pheiffer". www.nutter.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  5. http://www.nutter.com/
  6. https://www.hbsr.com/our_people/deirdre-sanders
  7. "The Innovation Firm - Hamilton Brook Smith Reynolds - Boston IP Law Firm, Patents, Copyrights, Trademarks, Litigation". www.hbsr.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  8. http://www.bergmansongllp.com/mbergman
  9. http://www.bergmansongllp.com/
  10. http://www.wolfgreenfield.com/directory/daniel-young/
  11. http://www.wolfgreenfield.com/
  12. "Toms, Keith | Professionals | McCarter & English". www.mccarter.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  13. "McCarter & English". www.mccarter.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  14. "Monica Grewal | WilmerHale". www.wilmerhale.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  15. "WilmerHale". www.wilmerhale.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  16. "Joshua M. Dalton". www.morganlewis.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  17. "Morgan, Lewis & Bockius - global law firm". www.morganlewis.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  18. "Rachel L. Emsley". Finnegan | Leading Intellectual Property (IP) Law Firm. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  19. "Homepage". Finnegan | Leading Intellectual Property (IP) Law Firm. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  20. "Rebecca M. McNeill | Professionals | McNeill Baur PLLC | Intellectual Property Law". www.mcneillbaur.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  21. "McNeill Baur PLLC | Intellectual Property Law". www.mcneillbaur.com. Retrieved 2018-04-24.
  22. http://www.bpla.org/?page=3
  23. http://www.bpla.org/?page=8
  24. http://www.bpla.org/?page=A5
  25. http://www.bpla.org/?page=7
  26. "Helsinn Healthcare S.A. v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA , Inc., et al.," (PDF).
  34. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/12_1163%20bsac%20Boston%20Patent%20Law-c.pdf
  35. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/12-398_resp_amcu_bpla.authcheckdam.pdf[permanent dead link]
  36. "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-07-23. Retrieved 2012-03-23.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  37. http://www.pubpat.org/assets/files/brca/CAFC/Boston%20Patent%20Law%20Assoc%20Amicus%20Brief.pdf
  38. http://www.wilmerhale.com/files/upload/BD_BPLA_amicus.pdf
  39. http://bpla.affiniscape.com/associations/10845/files/BPLA%20amicus%20brief%20in%20ACLU%20v.%20Myriad.pdf[permanent dead link]
  40. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/in_re_bilski_20090805.pdf
  41. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/in_re_engage_20080612.pdf
  42. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/in_re_bilski_20080407.pdf
  43. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/medimmune_v._genentech_20060725.pdf
  44. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/laboratory_corp._of_america_v._metabolite_labs.,_inc._20060206.pdf
  45. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/merck_&_co._v._teva_pharma._usa,_inc._20050922.pdf
  46. http://www.bpla.org/associations/10845/files/phillips_v._awh_corp_20040917.pdf
  47. http://www.bpla.org/?page=42
  48. "Comments on 2014 Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility in response to request for comments at 79 Fed. Reg. 74618 (Dec. 16, 2014)" (PDF).
  49. http://www.bpla.org/resource/resmgr/USPTO_Comments/BPLA_Comments_Submission_424.pdf
  50. http://bpla.org/associations/10845/files/PTO-C-2011-0066%20-%20Nationwide%20Workforce%20Program%20-%20Package%20to%20USPTO%20from%20Boston%20Patent%20Law%20Association.PDF[permanent dead link]
  51. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-11-29/html/2011-30717.htm
  52. http://bpla.affiniscape.com/associations/10845/files/CommentsonPatentQuality.pdf[permanent dead link]
  53. http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/com/sol/notices/74fr65093.pdf
  54. http://www.uspto.gov/patents/law/notices/75fr5040.pdf
  55. http://bpla.affiniscape.com/associations/10845/files/CommentsOnExParteAppeals.pdf[permanent dead link]
  56. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2009-12-22/pdf/E9-30402.pdf
  57. http://bpla.affiniscape.com/associations/10845/files/CommentsOnOmbudsman.PDF[permanent dead link]
  58. http://www.uspto.gov/patents/law/notices/74fr55212.pdf
  59. "Judge Arthur J. Gajarsa Retires from Federal Circuit".
  61. "Chief Justice John M. Greaney".
  62. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/boston/wolf.htm
  63. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/boston/bowler.htm
  64. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/
  65. http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/judges/alan-d-lourie-circuit-judge.html
  66. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-09-15. Retrieved 2012-03-23.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  67. http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/
  68. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/boston/zobel.htm
  69. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/boston/stearns.htm
  70. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/boston/saris.htm
  71. http://www.mad.uscourts.gov/boston/young.htm

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