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COVID-19 and PTAB Recalibration -- Virtual Trials and Evolving Agency Workflows


Speaker(s): Robert Greene Sterne, Scott A. McKeown
Recorded on: Apr. 13, 2020
PLI Program #: 299530

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, PatentsPostGrant.com, 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.