Kathy Hook

IT Project Manager

"I love my boss...He has empowered me to lead projects
and to lead people,which I never thought I'd do."

When we asked Kathy to describe her job, her answer was "Wow, that’s a good question!"

Why? Because she’s been able to affect process change and scope in IT contracts, patent system operations and programs since she started in 2007 — and in ways she never dreamed of.

Kathy is a project manager who works on patent examiner tools. She was the first USPTO scrum master when the agency decided to change its IT project management process from waterfall to agile. The translation: The USPTO modernized its software development methodologies from a linear approach to an iterative one. So as scrum master on one of the agency’s multi-million dollar IT projects under this new mode, she was head honcho — taking the lead on managing everything from developing start-up documentation, to software deployments, and everything in between.

Currently, she is handling all of the business program coordination for a new search tool. She liaises with key internal stakeholders across the agency and keeps
senior leadership informed that the project is on time and on budget.

Kathy’s days begin at 5 a.m. and typically range from ‘crazy to crazier.’ But she wouldn’t have it any other way.

At the USPTO, Kathy is happy, busy, challenged, and rewarded. Her favorite part about working at the USPTO is the diversity of the groups with whom she works. From administrative assistants to executives, she says, all do their part to help the agency thrive.

Case in point: her boss. She attributes much of her professional success to a great and extremely supportive supervisor who will, at any given moment, check in with her just to ask if she’s fulfilled and if there’s anything she wants to do that she’s not currently doing.

"I love my boss. He’s the type of boss who will support you on anything and everything. He has empowered me to lead projects and to lead people, which I never thought I’d do or want to do. He has helped me grow professionally, for which I’m eternally grateful."