Percina L.

Management and Program Analyst

“Work hard… but enjoy life harder. And don’t forget to surround yourself with positive people!”

Originally from Jacksonville, Florida, you can find Percina L. cheering “Go Jaguars!” whenever her hometown team plays. She brings that same energy and passion to her career, where she has reaped the rewards of pushing herself to go beyond her limits.

After graduating from the University of Maryland University College with a master’s degree in business, Percina served with the Army Review Board Agency as a military analyst for several years before applying to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). She then joined the USPTO in 2017 as a Management and Program Analyst with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB).

Percina is also a proud retired military Army veteran who lives with PTSD and Somatic symptom disorder. “These disabilities are results of trauma from my military service, but even if I wanted to, I wouldn’t change a thing about my military life and service,” she explains. “These life experiences (both positive and negative) have made me who I am today, a proud employee of the USPTO!”

Percina was led to her current role after feeling inspired to do something different in the federal service. Particularly, she sought a career that would enable her to draw upon the skills she earned from her master’s degree in business commerce and administration. 

“The idea of working in an agency that dealt with business commerce, patents, and trademarks intrigued me,” Percina explains, “And when I researched more about the agency, I saw that the Partnership for Public Service had identified the USPTO as one of the top federal agencies to work for. Needless to say, I am grateful to be a part of an organization that continually strives to be in the top-tier of federal agencies."

All in a day’s work

Percina’s daily work as a Management and Program Analyst includes analyzing work processes to make them more efficient, and writing and updating polices such as Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), Internal Operating Procedures (IOPs), and the PTAB’s Hearings Guide. She also researches and surveys the market to better train PTAB employees on technical and soft skill issues, such as those pertaining to case management and hearings operations. She particularly enjoys “Training Tuesdays,” where she works with a team of Administrative Patent Judges (APJs) to keep abreast of the hottest topics occurring at the PTAB, the USPTO, and throughout patent law. 

She, herself, uses technical skills and soft skills—such as being a great communicator, listener, problem-solver/troubleshooter, and critical thinker—every day.

What energizes Percina at work? “Seeing an important project or program not only finish, but flourish!” she replies. She also considers the best part of her job to be collaborating and working with others as a team. The culture in the PTAB business unit is one she describes as “highly educated.”

“This promotes autonomy and grants ‘Lead-Way’ (the empowerment to drive toward innovative solutions and programs that best serve our stakeholders and enhance our customers’ experience),” Percina explains.

“The USPTO also offers maximum flexibility to get your work done and balance your family or personal life. Work-life balance is phenomenal compared to any other federal agency in the D.C./Maryland/Virginia (DMV) area.”

To others who are considering working in a similar field, Percina advises, “Always think strategically and keep abreast of progressive employee programs, as well as managerial policy updates from the Department of Commerce (DOC) and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM).”

Tackling challenges, building community

Percina’s work is not without challenge. Along with her colleagues, she continually strives to meet pendency goals in AIA proceedings and ex parte appeals, while also supporting the PTAB’s efforts to deliver quality and consistent results to customers.

Percina has found community at the USPTO as well, after joining several employee affinity groups. She is currently the Diversity Chair for the Bright Knights Chapter of Federally Employed Women (FEW), a member of the USPTO Military Association (UMA), and also a member of ResponsAbility, a group of disability advocates.

Percina’s personal career goal is to support and uplift her business unit in any way possible. And it’s no surprise that she brings this same spirit of helping others to her life outside of work, where she serves as a community activist through the Prince William County non-profit she founded, “WeR4Seniors.” The organization aims to help senior citizens in the community. 

Overall, Percina's approach to her career and life have served her and others well. “Work hard… but enjoy life harder. And don’t forget to surround yourself with positive people,” she says while beaming with a smile. 

While out of the office, you can find her “anywhere there’s a ‘real’ beach!”