Secretary of Commerce Carlos M. Gutierrez has appointed Margaret J.A. Peterlin to serve as Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the Commerce Department's United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
"Margaret is a tremendous asset to the USPTO. With an impressive track record of success across several disciplines, she has established herself as a proven leader, strategic legal thinker, and knowledgeable legislative tactician," said Jon Dudas, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO. "Margaret will apply these skills to USPTO's challenges, which she well understands from her time representing the leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives. Margaret's leadership will be instrumental in the USPTO's efforts to work with applicants to enhance the quality of their applications, process patents and trademarks in a timely manner, and operate in a way that motivates our employees and inspires our international partners."
Before joining the USPTO, Ms. Peterlin was Counsel for Legal Policy and National Security Advisor for the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, J. Dennis Hastert. In this role, she advised the Speaker, House and Senate leadership, and senior staff on legislative policy and strategy, including judiciary issues such as intellectual property protection, and international relations issues.
She previously was General Counsel to Richard Armey, Majority Leader of the U.S. House. She clerked on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals for Judge Jerry E. Smith. Ms. Peterlin also served as an officer in the U.S. Navy for four years, working in the communications field.
A native of Daleville, Ala., Ms. Peterlin holds a bachelor of arts from the College of the Holy Cross. She earned a legal degree cum laude from the University of Chicago, where she was the founding Editor in Chief of The Chicago Journal of International Law . She is a member of the New York State Bar.