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Webinar: Obtaining Effective Design Patents

October 22, 2020 @ 12:00 pm 1:00 pm

This program offers 1 participatory MCLE credit. You must register in advance to participate.

Design patents can play a key role in protecting almost any innovation that has a visual component. From consumer products such as shoes and smartphones, to graphical user interfaces, to product packaging and retail sales equipment, design patents are a crucial tool in a comprehensive protection strategy. This webinar will explore what can be protected by a design patent, techniques for obtaining effective design protection, and some pitfalls to avoid.

Speakers: Daniel Gajewski and Tracy Durkin

Moderator: Sepp Zangeneh


Daniel Gajewski is a director in Sterne Kessler’s Mechanical and Design Practice Group. His work centers on utility and design patent preparation and prosecution. Dan is the current secretary of the IPO Industrial Design Committee, and has spoken on design patent topics at USPTO, AIPLA, and AUTM events.

Tracy Durkin is the practice leader of the Mechanical and Design Patent Practice Group and a member of the Trademark & Brand Protection Practice at Sterne Kessler, an IP specialty firm in Washington, DC.  Tracy has a well-earned reputation for excellence in design patent law. In 2018, Financial Times named her as one of the “Top Ten Legal Innovators in North America,” noting her as “a leading authority on design patents.” In 2017, Intellectual Asset Management noted in their annual “IAM 1000” ranking that Tracy “needs no introduction as the country’s top design expert.” In 2019, World Trademark Review editors heralded Tracy for being “as innovative as the products that she protects.”  A leader in the legal community as well as the law, Tracy is a past president of the Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia and is currently on the board of the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia.

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