Chief of Staff
Andrew Byrnes is the Chief of Staff for the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Serving as the Under Secretary’s principal advisor, the Chief of Staff helps to oversee the budget, operations and public engagement functions of the agency in addition to the day-to-day management of the policy coordination process with the White House, Department of Commerce and other agencies.
As Chief of Staff, Mr. Byrnes supports the agency's mission of optimizing patent and trademark quality and timeliness, and providing domestic and global leadership to improve intellectual property policy, protection and enforcement worldwide.
Mr. Byrnes comes to the USPTO from the Silicon Valley office of the global law firm Covington and Burling LLP, where, as a partner, his practice focused on intellectual property litigation and strategy. Prior to his time with Covington, he spent a decade with the law firm Heller Ehrman LLP.
In addition to his considerable knowledge of intellectual property, Mr. Byrnes brings expertise in political, election, and civil rights law to the agency. His career spans high stakes issues brought before federal district and appellate courts, California state courts, the International Trade Commission, the Federal Election Commission, and the Fair Political Practices Commission.
Mr. Byrnes also produced the international (U.S./Japan) award-winning feature length documentary, “The Power of Two,” and the corresponding global campaign promoting organ donation and cystic fibrosis awareness.
Mr. Byrnes graduated with honors and distinction from Stanford University and magna cum laude from Harvard Law School.
About the USPTO
Since 1790, the basic role of the United States intellectual property system has remained the same: to "promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries" (Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution). Today, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is a federal agency in the Department of Commerce, headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia. Through the issuance of patents, the USPTO encourages technological advancement by providing incentives to invent, invest in, and disclose new technology worldwide. Through the registration of trademarks, the agency assists businesses in protecting their investments, promoting goods and services, and safeguarding consumers against confusion and deception in the marketplace. By disseminating both patent and trademark information, the USPTO promotes an understanding of intellectual property protection and facilitates the development and sharing of new technologies worldwide.