USPTO Announces New Chief Information Officer

Press Release

Contact (media inquiries only):
Maria V. Hernandez

The Department of Commerce's United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is pleased to announce Douglas Bourgeois as its new Chief Information Officer, taking over the post on May 21, 2001.

"Douglas Bourgeois brings to the USPTO a wide range of experience that will be helpful to the agency as we face the challenges of technology, improved customer service and e-commerce initiatives in the years ahead," stated Nicholas Godici, Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Acting Director of the USPTO.

Bourgeois serves as the principal advisor to the director on the application of information technology to support and improve USPTO business processes. In addition, Bourgeois takes over such e-commerce initiatives as USPTO's Electronic Business Center (EBC), the e-commerce home for the USPTO where one can find software to submit a patent application, check the status of a patent application, and register to conduct business with the USPTO securely; and the USPTO Web databases where one can search every United States patent ever issued, a total of more than 6.5 million patents.

Before joining the federal service and USPTO, Bourgeois was the managing director of Customer Service Technology at Federal Express. His varied experience also includes working as an engineer and program manager of aerodynamic testing at Allied Signal Aerospace Company before joining Federal Express where he won numerous awards for customer service enhancements.

USPTO administers patent and trademark laws protecting intellectual property and rewarding individual effort. Intellectual property is a potent force in the competitive free enterprise system. By protecting intellectual endeavors and encouraging technological progress, USPTO seeks to preserve the United States' technological edge, which is a key to our current and future competitiveness. USPTO also disseminates patent and trademark information that promotes an understanding of intellectual property protection and facilitates the development and sharing of new technologies worldwide.

Over six million patents have been issued since the first patent in 1790 and more than 2.3 million trademarks have been registered since the first in 1870. Last year USPTO issued 182,223 patents and registered 127,794 trademarks.