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WASHINGTON – The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today announced the appointment of Mary Critharis as its new Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs. Ms. Critharis had been serving as the Acting Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs since October 19, following the selection of her predecessor, Shira Perlmutter, to lead the U.S. Copyright Office.
As Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs, Ms. Critharis will serve as a policy advisor to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and oversee the USPTO’s domestic and international intellectual property (IP) policy activities; legislative engagement, through the Office of Governmental Affairs; education and training, through the Global Intellectual Property Academy (GIPA); global advocacy, through the IP Attaché Program; and economic analysis, through the Office of the Chief Economist.
“Mary’s proven leadership, as well as her remarkable breadth of experience, make her an outstanding choice to lead our IP policy and international affairs team at the USPTO,” said Andrei Iancu, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO. “The USPTO and America’s intellectual property system will benefit from Mary’s thoughtfulness, steady hand, and long history with both domestic and international IP policy matters.”
Ms. Critharis has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and political science from New York University, a master’s degree in biotechnology from Johns Hopkins University, and a juris doctor from Brooklyn Law School, where she was the executive editor of the international law journal. She first joined the USPTO as a patent examiner in 1992 before progressing to Assistant Solicitor in 2000. From 2001 to 2002, she served as Counsel to the United States Senate Judiciary Committee before returning to the USPTO as Attorney Advisor (2002-2004), Senior Patent Counsel (2004-2011), and Deputy Chief Policy Officer and Senior Counsel (2014-2020).
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