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USPTO Post-Grant Patent Trials 2016

Speaker(s): Bob Steinberg, Darryl Towell, Dianna L. DeVore, Ph.D., Greg Dovel, Greg H. Gardella, Hon. Matthew Clements, Hon. Teresa Stanek Rea, Jason E. Stach, Jonathan Stroud, Julie Y. Mar-Spinola, Melissa Finocchio, Michael T. Rosato, Michelle K. Holoubek, Nathan Kelley, Peter P. Chen, Rich Sonnentag, Rick D Nydegger, Robert Greene Sterne, Scott A. McKeown
Recorded on: Mar. 31, 2016
PLI Program #: 150183

Jonathan Stroud, a former patent examiner and litigator for Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner LLP, has litigated, examined, prosecuted, negotiated, and counseled clients through patent disputes, focusing on the patentability disputes before the Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) and their complex interactions with other forms of litigation.

At the USPTO for five years, Mr. Stroud examined medical devices, such as minimally invasive surgical devices, stents, shunts, bone implants, heart valves, cutters, spacers, electrodes, and many other medical technologies. Mr. Stroud interned at the U.S. International Trade Commission for Judge Robert K. Rogers, where he focused on discovery disputes in administrative proceedings.

At Finnegan, he represented clients such as LG, Eli Lilly & Co., BMW, Bausch & Lomb, and Freedom Innovations on dozens of covered business method (CBM), post-grant (PGR), and inter partes reviews (IPRs) for both patent owners and petitioners, drafting petitions, responses, and motions. He drafted a CBM filed the first night of the proceedings’ availability that resulted in all claims being held unpatentable.

He now manages outside counsel, settlement and licensing negotiations, prior art analysis, legal strategy, and prepares, drafts, and files IPR proceedings for Unified.

He earned his J.D. with honors from American University Washington College of Law; his B.S. in biomedical engineering from Tulane University; and his M.A. in print journalism from the University of Southern California.

Darryl Towell

Before founding Docket Navigator, Darryl was a patent litigator for more than ten years. After earning a B.B.A. from Abilene Christian University in 1992 and a J.D. from Pepperdine University in 1995, Darryl began his legal career as a law clerk to Hon. Boyce F. Martin, Jr., Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. In 1999, Darryl joined Jones Day as a trial attorney specializing in patent litigation. Darryl is happily married to Karyl (also part of the Docket Navigator team) and the proud father of their eight year old daughter.

Jason Stach leads Finnegan’s PTAB trials practice. He practices patent law with an emphasis on post-grant proceedings at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and litigation in district courts and at the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). He has been lead or back-up counsel in more than 80 Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) trials, including inter partes reviews (IPRs), covered business method reviews (CBMs), and post-grant reviews (PGRs), and has consulted on dozens of other PTAB trials. Mr. Stach also represents clients before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in appeals stemming from PTAB decisions and court actions. In addition to his trial experience, he has taken and defended dozens of depositions, and has argued before the PTAB, at district court claim construction and summary judgment hearings, and at ITC hearings.

In leading the PTAB trials section, Mr. Stach coordinates the firm’s PTAB training programs, workflow, and other aspects of the practice. He also serves as the recruiting partner for Finnegan’s Atlanta office, overseeing the office’s summer associate program and its other recruiting efforts. His pro bono experience includes representing veterans of military service before the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.

Mr. Stach handles cases involving many different technologies, including electrical, computer, software, chemical, pharmaceutical, medical device, and mechanical technologies. Examples include extracting baseband signals from carrier signals in an energy-efficient manner; improving commercial aircraft engines; improving high-speed chip-to-chip signaling techniques using equalization; securing communications over the Internet and other networks; enhancing the control of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) devices; and creating groundbreaking sports sensor technology.

Julie Mar-Spinola is Chief Intellectual Property Officer and Vice President, Legal Operations of cybersecurity company, Finjan Holdings, Inc., where she holds dual executive business and legal role for the Company.  In particular, Julie is responsible for the Finjan’s research and development of secure mobile products, patent asset management, enforcement programs (i.e., licensing and litigation), public policy (i.e., patent reform and cybersecurity), new innovation and licensing initiatives, and legal operations.  Ms. Mar-Spinola is also a member of the Board of Directors for subsidiary, Finjan Mobile, Inc.

Ms. Mar-Spinola has dedicated more than 25 years of her career largely representing high tech companies and individual inventors in the protection and preservation of their intellectual properties assets. Prior to joining Finjan, Julie served as the general counsel for three high technology companies, including a thin-film solar startup, as well as the VP of Global Affairs for a Fortune 500 semiconductor company. She is a registered patent attorney, an accomplished litigator, and a C-level patent strategist.

Julie is an appointed member of the Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC) for the United States Patent & Trademark Office, a member of the Santa Clara University, School of Law’s High Technology Advisory Board, and a faculty member for the Law School’s newly created In-House Counsel Institute. A dedicated mentor, Julie is the Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of ChIPs Network, Inc. (, a nonprofit that supports, educates, and promotes the advancement of women in IP law and technology.  She is also a certified mediator for the US District Court for the Northern District of California, specializing in helping resolve complex patent disputes.

Melissa Finocchio is Vice President and Chief Litigation Counsel for Intellectual Ventures.  Ms. Finocchio joined IV in May of 2010 to build and lead IV’s patent enforcement program.  Ms. Finocchio and her in-house team of litigators manage a large and complex portfolio of domestic and international patent matters.  Successes in those matters have driven many settlements over time, resulting in significant revenue for the company and its investors.  Ms. Finocchio is also in charge of the company’s substantial body of post-grant work before the Patent Trials and Appeals Board of the USPTO.

Ms. Finocchio serves as a key legal advisor to Intellectual Ventures’ senior executive team in support of the company’s licensing efforts and in devising and executing strategies to monetize its IP assets.  In addition, Ms. Finocchio participates in the company’s policy and legislative efforts to strengthen and improve the US patent system, and is a regular speaker at significant IP conferences across the country.

Ms. Finocchio came to Intellectual Ventures from Micron Technology, Inc., where she managed Micron’s high-stakes litigation, including patent, antitrust, and securities matters.  Before joining Micron, Ms. Finocchio had a long and successful career litigating technology cases in Silicon Valley. In 1998, Ms. Finocchio joined Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe in Menlo Park where in addition to representing companies of all sizes in a wide variety of IP litigation matters, she also served as hiring partner for the Silicon Valley Office and Partner-In-Charge of the firm-wide Associate Mentoring Program.  Upon graduation from Santa Clara School of Law in 1990, Ms. Finocchio joined Jackson, Tufts, Cole & Black of San Francisco, and then Cooley Godward of Palo Alto.

Nathan Kelley is a partner at Perkins Coie LLP where his practice focusses on patent appeals, IP counseling, and government relations.  He previously served for more than a decade at the top levels of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, most recently as its Solicitor and Deputy General Counsel for Intellectual Property Law.  In that capacity, Nate managed all IP litigation for the agency, including its 100+ Federal Circuit appeals yearly. 

At the USPTO, Nate also acted as its Chief Administrative Patent Judge, leading the Patent Trial and Appeal Board during a critical period as it was coming up to speed with its jurisdiction over inter partes reviews under the America Invents Act.  Before his time in the Solicitor’s Office and the PTAB, Nate worked for six years at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, first as a member of its permanent legal staff and then as a law clerk for Circuit Judge Randall Rader.  Earlier he worked in private practice at an IP law firm after beginning his career as a patent examiner in the semiconductor and integrated circuit arts.

Peter Chen is a partner in Covington’s Palo Alto office specializing in intellectual property litigation, and is co-head of the firm’s Patent Office Trials group focusing on America Invents Act (AIA) trials before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). He has successfully represented PTAB petitioners through final written decision, and patent owners in denials of institution, and has advised clients on PTAB strategy and policy issues.

During 2015-2017, Mr. Chen was a Lead APJ and as a member of PTAB’s management team, he assisted three successive Chief Judges in formulating and executing PTAB policy involving AIA trial procedures and Board operations. He also supervised a team of APJs, and assisted the Regional Director in policy and operations matters for the USPTO’s West Coast Regional Office. Mr. Chen is among the only former Lead APJs in private practice, and provides clients with a uniquely valuable perspective from his experience in presiding over AIA trials and in devising PTAB policy.

Prior to his service at the PTAB, Mr. Chen was a first-chair intellectual property litigator and partner at three international law firms, and also served as general counsel and intellectual property counsel in-house, at startup and publicly traded technology companies in Silicon Valley. He has litigated over 75 patent cases, 25 trade secrets misappropriation cases, and numerous cases involving copyrights, trademarks, and unfair competition, in federal and state courts and the International Trade Commission, for high technology and life sciences companies.

Mr. Chen is a registered patent attorney and is a named co-inventor on two U.S. Patents Nos. 8,468,050 and 8,843,392.

Rich Sonnentag is Litigation Counsel for Google. He joined Google in September of 2012 to support Google’s patent litigation efforts.  Mr. Sonnentag also supports various patent licensing efforts on behalf of Google.

Mr. Sonnentag came to Google from Motorola Mobility LLC, where he had also managed patent litigation efforts, including domestic and foreign patent litigation.  While at Motorola, Mr. Sonnentag supported a wide variety of projects, including licensing, large-scale patent studies in support of litigation and licensing, foreign patent oppositions, in-business counseling and preparation and prosecution of patents.  He joined Motorola’s law department in 1990.

Rick D. Nydegger
Workman | Nydegger

Mr. Nydegger is a founding member of Workman Nydegger.  In the early years of his practice, Mr. Nydegger was engaged in trial practice, and assisted in successfully conducting several of the first major litigation matters (involving medical device technologies) handled by the Firm.  Mr. Nydegger later developed an extensive prosecution practice, with emphasis in electronic, software, e-commerce and networking technologies, and life science technologies.

From 1989 to 1998, Mr. Nydegger served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Utah’s S. J. Quinney Law School, and was recognized by the law school as an Honorary Alumnus in 2004.  Beginning in 1998, he was invited to serve on the adjunct faculty of Brigham Young University’s J. Reuben Clark Law School.  He was recognized in 2005 as the BYU Law School’s Honored Alumnus of the Year.

Rick is a well-respected authority in the field of patenting software, e-commerce and information science technology, and has lectured both nationally and internationally on that topic.  He has published a number of articles, and has authored and co-authored several chapters in a treatise on Electronic and Software Patents.

He has also worked closely with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in the development of several important policy initiatives, including its 21st Century Strategic Plan, and the drafting of several of the PTO Guidelines used by the patent examining corp when conducting examination of software related inventions.  In July of 2003 he was appointed by the Secretary of the Department of Commerce to a three year term as Chair of the Patent Public Advisory Committee.

He is a past president of the American Intellectual Property Law Association and was one of its first members to receive recognition as a Fellow.  He has been a frequent spokesman for AIPLA on many key legislative and regulatory developments.  He also served as a member of the board and as President of the National Inventors’ Hall of Fame.

Robert Greene Sterne is a founding director of Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox P.L.L.C. in Washington, D.C.  He has extensive expertise in AIA post issuance proceedings and concurrent patent litigation, USITC 337 investigations, Federal Circuit appeals, EU and China enforcement, reexamination, patent monetization and licensing, and corporate intellectual property best practices (CIPO and Board of Directors). 

He is a registered U.S. patent attorney, has spoken and written extensively on these topics, was named in 2015 by the Financial Times as one of the "Top Ten Legal Innovators in North America," was named in 2015 by Law360 as one of  “The Top 25 Icons of IP,” and was named in 2014 by The National Law Journal as an “Intellectual Property Trailblazer and Pioneer.” He is editor in chief of Patent Office Litigation (2012), and Patent Office Litigation 2nd Edition (2017)(Thomson Reuters). He is counsel in more than 200 PTAB contested proceedings and has played a key role in precedent-setting U.S. case law, including: In re Beauregard, (Fed. Cir. 1995), KSR (2007), i4i (2011), In re Jung (Fed. Cir. 2011), ETG (Fed Cir. 2012), and Hear Wear (Fed. Cir. 2014).

Among many honors, he is the recipient of the Sedona Conference Award for Excellence in Advanced Legal Education (2004), the Sedona Lifetime Achievement Award (2012), and the 2012 Attorney of the Year “Good Scout” Award for his leadership in community service. He has been at the forefront of software patent protection, having represented IBM in the precedent setting In re Beauregard case that produced the 1996 USPTO software patent guidelines and having delivered in 1985 the seminal AI and Expert System Legal Protection presentation before the AIPLA. Sterne Kessler is ranked in 2019 as the 4th largest US IP specialty firm and 322nd largest US law firm.

Scott McKeown is a partner in Ropes & Gray’s intellectual property litigation practice and chair of the firm’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) group. He focuses his practice on post-grant patent counseling and litigation matters at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and related appeals to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Scott handles all aspects of post-issuance patent proceedings, specializing in administrative trials before the PTAB, such as inter partes review (IPR) and post-grant review (PGR). He also provides advice on USPTO post-grant proceedings concurrent with complex International Trade Commission (ITC) and district court litigations.

Named one of the world’s leading patent practitioners for post-grant proceedings by Intellectual Asset Management, Scott is one of the most active PTAB trial attorneys in the U.S., having handled more than 300 PTAB matters since 2012, including those in which more than $500 million was at stake. He currently serves as lead post-grant counsel to some of the world’s best-known innovators and has handled some of the most noteworthy PTAB trials to date, including the only precedential decision on live testimony. Scott has further been recognized by Chambers, The Legal 500, IAM Strategy, and was recently named by Managing IP as its “Outstanding PTAB Litigator” for 2020.

As a Professorial Lecturer in Law at The George Washington University Law School and a member of the teaching faculty of the Practising Law Institute, Scott lectures and writes extensively on PTAB proceedings. He was also a founding Board member of the PTAB Bar Association.  Likewise, he is recognized as a thought leader in the PTAB industry as he is frequently quoted in the press on PTAB issues and maintains an award-winning blog,, which examines developments in patent litigation, including issues related to USPTO post issuance proceedings. As Chambers USA reports from a client, “Scott is probably the most well-known PTAB specialist. He is very efficient and knows the PTAB and its procedures, inside and out.” 

Prior to becoming an attorney, Scott worked as an electrical engineer for a government agency, troubleshooting embedded systems and circuit designs. He also has experience across a wide range of related technologies, including computer software, wireless telecommunication protocols, network architectures, e-commerce applications, analog and digital signal processing, and consumer electronics.

Teresa "Terry" Stanek Rea is a partner in the firm's Intellectual Property Group and a director with C&M International, Ltd. (CMI), the international trade and investment consulting firm affiliated with Crowell & Moring. Terry is the former acting and deputy director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), as well as acting and deputy under secretary of commerce for intellectual property. She brings a wealth of domestic and international experience and skills to her practice, both legal and political. Her practice concentrates on working with clients in several key areas, including IP policies and strategies, patent enforcement and post-grant administrative proceedings, trade secrets policy and enforcement, and digital/Internet related copyright issues. Managing Intellectual Property recognized Terry as one of the 50 most influential people in intellectual property. Additionally, Terry has been named among the National Law Journal's 2014 "Intellectual Property Trailblazers & Pioneers," Law360's "2014 Most Influential Women in IP," and the Washington Business Journal's "Legal Champions."

While at the USPTO, Terry led the agency through the implementation of the America Invents Act (AIA). She was actively involved in writing the regulations implementing the new inter partes review, covered business method review, and post-grant review proceedings created by the AIA, and she negotiated numerous IP issues with foreign officials. Terry was the senior official responsible for the administration's formulation and implementation of U.S. intellectual property policies, including patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secret issues.

Terry focuses her practice on U.S. and international IP policy issues and disputes, complex patent litigation and inter partes administrative proceedings, trade secrets protection and enforcement, IP infringement and validity opinions, IP licensing, counseling, and patent portfolio development, management, and monetization. She works with clients in many industries including life sciences, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, chemicals, medical devices, publishing, healthcare, and others. Terry advises clients on privacy, piracy, trademarks, issues related to generic top-level domains (gTLDs), and trade secrets matters.  

In her role with CMI, Terry advises clients on copyright reform, trade secrets rulemaking, and on the important IP and dispute resolution chapters of trade agreements.

Terry is the former president of the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) and the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Prior to establishing her private legal practice, Terry was a patent attorney for a multinational chemical company. She is also a licensed pharmacist. She obtained her J.D. from Wayne State University, and her B.S. from the University of Michigan.

As noted by one of the most highly regarded international rankings of IP professionals, “Greg H. Gardella is ‘a great counselor and patent attorney’ whose procurement, litigation and post-grant work is ‘amazing.’ He is able to synthesize legal solutions for his clients from all angles — anyone who knows Greg knows he is wicked smart.” Elsewhere, they noted that he “‘has real pedigree and an incredible depth of knowledge'” and he is “‘wonderfully savvy.’”

Mr. Gardella has been honored as one of the Best Lawyers in America for multiple consecutive years and has likewise received various awards and recognition from Managing IP Magazine, Intellectual Asset Management (IAM), Super Lawyers and Who’s Who Legal. He has been repeatedly named as one of the nation’s top post-grant practitioners by IAM, which previously reported that “the ‘phenomenal’ Greg H. Gardella is ‘extremely experienced in the post-grant space and a dynamic all-round patent consultant’” and noted that his “former big-ticket patent litigation experience has served him well in contested reexamination proceedings, of which he is regarded a master.” Mr. Gardella is one of only a handful of U.S. patent attorneys to have earned spots on both the IAM Patent 1000: The World’s Leading Patent Professionals and the IAM Strategy 300: The World’s Leading IP Strategists.

Mr. Gardella successfully defended the famous TiVo DVR patent, which thereafter generated well over $1 billion in licensing revenue. Mr. Gardella also successfully defended before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board four patents covering aseptic packaging technologies that are used to process about 2 billion bottles per year. On the challenger side, Mr. Gardella prevailed for St. Jude Medical in nine post-grant proceedings targeting numerous Medtronic patents that purportedly covered the billion-dollar denervation industry. In those cases, every challenged claim was finally adjudicated to be invalid on multiple grounds.

Mr. Gardella was also the editor of a treatise on post-grant practice entitled “Post-Grant Proceedings Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board,” published by Practicing Law Institute. He has frequently lectured on post-grant proceedings and strategies for effective execution of concurrent litigation, post-grant proceedings and patent prosecution.

Mr. Gardella has broad technical aptitude arising from his dual degrees in electrical and mechanical engineering and from years of representations involving DNA detection and sequencing, genetic diagnosis and screening, organic chemistry, immunochemistry, pharmaceutical and other biotechnology innovations. Mr. Gardella has deep familiarity with the technologies underlying most medical devices, polymerization processes, genetic sequencing techniques, semiconductor fabrication and device structure, computer architecture, wireless telecommunications, network data communication, software ranging from microcode to application layer, signal processing, VLSI design, micro-structured films, and industrial equipment.


Bob Steinberg is a partner in both the Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles offices of Latham & Watkins. Mr. Steinberg is a member of the firm’s Litigation & Trial Department as well as former Global Co-Chair of the Intellectual Property (IP) Practice and current Chair of Latham’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Practice. The group’s strategic development and unique trial and PTAB capabilities were featured in an article in The Recorder, an ALM publication.

Mr. Steinberg is a founding member of the national PTAB Bar Association and was elected as the first president to the Association ( He is also a registered patent attorney and has served in most of the firm's PTAB proceedings for clients such as AbbVie Biotechnology Ltd., Actifio, NVIDIA, and Qualtrics. 

He has been instrumental in establishing Latham’s PTAB practice. The practice pioneered innovative approaches to the bourgeoning area of PTAB proceedings and has maintained an outstanding success rate in persuading the PTAB to institute our client’s petitions and a more than 96% success rate with final determinations. IAM Patent 1000recognized Mr. Steinberg and noted that he “has had a full schedule of late, given his chairmanship of the post-grant practice; he is supremely on top of things, though, as his high inter partes review institution rate attests.” Mr. Steinberg was part of Latham’s team to successfully obtain final written decision in the PTAB on behalf of Actifio against Delphix, with a sweeping victory, invalidating 109 of 111 challenged claims across five patents; Jaguar Land Rover to defeat Cruise Control Technologies (a shell company of patent troll Empire IP); and Qualtrics to invalidate four of OpinionLab, Inc. patents. Mr. Steinberg also worked with the team that obtained a denial of institution on behalf of AbbVie in Amgen’s IPR petitions filed against AbbVie’s patent covering the blockbuster biosimilar drug Humira.

Mr. Steinberg has continuously been recognized as a leading lawyer by The Legal 500 US and Chambers USA. Most recently he was named a 2017 IP Trailblazer by The National Law Journal, which recognized practitioners who have “shown a deep passion and perseverance in pursuit of their mission, having achieved remarkable results along the way." He was also recognized as one of The Most Influential IP Attorneys in LA for 2017 by The Los Angeles Business Journal which highlighted his “thriving” patent litigation practice and “innovative approaches to the burgeoning area of PTAB proceedings.” He’s been named among the 2012 Who’s Who for Intellectual Property Law by Los Angeles Business Journal and among the top IP litigators in California by The Daily Journal in 2011. Mr. Steinberg was particularly cited for his representation of the Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust in a dispute with a defendant who claimed to possess long-lost negatives created by the famous nature photographer — which the Trust maintained were not authentic. He also assisted AMD to secure a US$1.25 billion worldwide settlement in a patent, contract, and antitrust dispute with Intel.

Mr. Steinberg also served on the 2014 Law360 Intellectual Property Editorial Advisory Board. 

Prior to joining Latham, Mr. Steinberg worked as the Chairman and CEO of xSides Corporation, a developer of desktop security software. He also spent 11 years at a California-based law firm where he was partner and member of the Executive Committee.


Dianna DeVore is a partner of Convergent Law Group, LLP. Dianna’s experience includes patent portfolio development, post-grant proceedings, and transactional work in support of product development in the life sciences. Dianna has developed and implemented product protection strategies for various technologies within the life sciences, including diagnostic devices and methods, monoclonal antibody discovery and use, devices for delivery of therapeutics, cell-based therapies, and genomics platforms.

From 2010 through March 2015, Dianna was Senior Vice President of Intellectual Property and Legal Affairs at Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc. a company providing non-invasive prenatal testing services for assessing the risk of various fetal chromosomal aneuploidies. Dianna has served as inside counsel for various companies including VP of property at Complete Genomics, Senior Counsel at Cambridge Antibody Technology (a wholly-owned subsidiary of AstraZeneca) and Associate Director of Patents at Elan Pharmaceuticals. In 2002, Dianna co-founded the Australian Stem Cell Centre (ASCC) in Melbourne, Australia, the first Australian Biotechnology Centre of Excellence, where she was Chief Operating Officer and VP, Cardiac Development.

Dianna holds a B.A. in Biology and Art History from Johns Hopkins University, a Ph.D. in Genetics from Yale University and a J.D. from Stanford Law School. She is a member of the California State Bar and is registered to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Hon. Matthew Clements
Lead Administrative Patent Judge
United States Patent and Trademark Office

Matt Clements is a Lead Administrative Patent Judge at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board in the Silicon Valley office.  He earned his law degree from Columbia Law School.  He also earned a Master of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from University of Washington, and a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering degree from Auburn University.  Prior to his appointment in March 2013, Judge Clements served with the law firm Ropes & Gray LLP where he practiced intellectual property law with broad experience in patent litigation, patent prosecution, and technology transactions.

Michelle K. Holoubek is a director in Sterne Kessler's Electronics Practice Group. With a background in relativistic physics, she specializes in software, digital healthcare, bioinformatics, and optical technologies. Having handled hundreds of software and business method applications at the PTO, patent-eligible subject matter (aka "101") is her special area of expertise. In addition to the preparation and prosecution of patents to develop portfolios for startups and Fortune 100 companies alike, she has been lead counsel in IPRs, CBMs, and reexams for both patent owners and challengers. She has also provided infringement and invalidity analysis in opinions for a variety of technologies.

In addition to cutting-edge optical and software applications, Michelle is heavily involved in our digital healthcare and bioinformatics practice, focusing on the intersection between optical devices, big data analytics, and the life sciences ecosystem.  She has practiced in the biological sample analysis and detection space since the early 2000s, including microfluidics, fluorescence-based imaging systems, and next-gen sequencing, along with the more processing-based analyses of interpreting biological correlations. 

Additional technical fields in which Michelle works include: web interfaces, Internet communications systems, software development, telecommunications systems, lasers, photolithography, cryptographic messaging, semiconductor fabrication and devices, electronic design automation, biometric devices, implantable medical devices, catheter location systems, sensor communication systems, financial products, and various other electrical, optical, and software/business method inventions.

Michelle is a contributing author of Patent Office Litigation, Second Edition, published in 2017. The book provides a fresh and comprehensive exploration of patent office litigation proceedings, including how the proceedings interact with other aspects of patent procurement and enforcement, while delivering practical analysis and advice. This second edition of Patent Office Litigation is the follow up to the first version of the book that was published in 2012 by Thomson Reuters Westlaw that focused on the contested proceedings that were introduced under the America Invents Act that year. Michelle is the Chapter Chief for the chapter on Covered Business Method Patent Review (CBM) in the 2012 edition. Additionally, she is a contributing author of the chapter on "Patentability Challenges at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office" in the ABA's Patent Litigation Strategies Handbook, 4th Edition (2015).

Prior to joining Sterne Kessler, Michelle studied physics with a concentration in astronomy at Louisiana State University.  She focused her research on gravitational wave detection, working on with both LSU’s resonant bar detector ALLEGRO and the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO). While at LSU, she also assisted in the development of software simulation and analysis programs for laboratory and educational use, and participated in a summer research fellowship for LIGO at the California Institute of Technology. From 2008-2013, Michelle  served on the Executive Committee for LSU's College of Science. Michelle has her J.D. from George Mason University School of Law.

Greg is co-founder of Dovel & Luner, a law firm that handles patent infringement and other high stakes business litigation cases (  The firm exclusively represents plaintiffs on a contingent-fee basis.  Greg has tried numerous jury trials to a winning verdict and successfully opposed numerous IPR and CBM petitions.
Greg is a graduate of Harvard Law School (J.D. 1986, magna cum laude).  He served as a law clerk to Chief Justice Burger and to Justice Scalia of the United States Supreme Court.

Michael leads the firm's practice involving contested proceedings at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He has extensive experience representing clients before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), including USPTO proceedings under the America Invents Act (AIA). He has served as lead counsel in 100+ Inter partes review (IPR) and Covered Business Method (CBM) review proceedings, patent interferences, reexaminations, and PTAB appeals.