USPTO September Monthly Review

Published on: 10/06/2023 10:47 AM

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monthly review
united states patent and trademark office

A look back at the highlights of September 2023

Journeys of Innovation

Dr. Norma Alcantar

Greatly influenced by the women in her life, chemical engineer Dr. Norma Alcantar uses nature’s prickly plants to point to innovative and sustainable solutions in materials science and chemical engineering. As a professor at the University of South Florida, Alcantar uses the insights she gained early in her life from her mother, grandmother, and schoolteachers to mentor the next generation of women in STEAM.

The cactus chemist: Dr. Norma Alcantar

Among the typical things you’d expect to find in a chemical engineer’s office — honorary awards, patent plaques, and books like “Environmental Analytical Chemistry” and “Introducing Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics” — Dr. Norma Alcantar’s office at the University of South Florida (USF) also showcases her love of life and teaching with books like “Intentional Integrity,” a coffee mug that reads “the influence of a good teacher can never be erased,” and a decorative plaque that reads “It’s All Gonna Be Fine.” 

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New trademark search screenshot

Guest blog by Dave Gooder, Commissioners for Trademarks

What to expect from our new trademark search system (and why we’re replacing TESS)

For decades, the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) has been a fixture of the USPTO’s information technology portfolio. Those of us in the trademark community have grown accustomed to it, and perhaps even grown fond of it over the years. Maybe you have field tags and design search codes memorized, and you can formulate complex search strings to pull up the exact mark you’re looking for in a snap.

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Latest updates on artificial intelligence and intellectual property

When it comes to artificial intelligence (AI), there is enormous potential for our country and for solving world problems — but there are significant risks as well. To shape the future of AI, we must act quickly but also thoughtfully and with your input.

Since taking office, President Biden and the entire Biden-Harris Administration have moved with urgency to seize the tremendous promise and manage the risks posed by AI. The Biden-Harris Administration is currently developing an executive order that will ensure the federal government is doing everything in its power to advance safe, secure and trustworthy AI, and manage its risks to individuals and society.

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Latest news and events

Design patent 1 million

Granted to Agustina Huckaby of Fort Worth, Texas, design patent 1 million is for the ornamental design for a dispensing comb. Huckaby, a licensed cosmetologist, holds another patent for a different comb design and markets her business under the federally registered trademark Pomp and Powder.

USPTO issues milestone 1 millionth design patent

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today officially issued U.S. design patent 1 million, an important milestone in American innovation and creativity. The USPTO grants design patents for new, original, and ornamental designs for an article of manufacture. Protecting the way something looks, as opposed to how it works (covered by a utility patent), is a vital step for many small businesses.

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Mary Fuller appointed regional director of USPTO’s Silicon Valley Regional Office

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today announced the appointment of Mary Fuller as Regional Director of the USPTO’s Silicon Valley Regional Office (SVRO) in San Jose, California. The SVRO serves budding and current inventors and entrepreneurs in the Western Region, including Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington.

Read more here

Patent Center to fully replace USPTO legacy system for filing and managing patent applications online

Beginning November 8, 2023, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) Patent Center system will fully replace the EFS-Web system and the Private Patent Application Information Retrieval (Private PAIR) tool for the electronic filing and management of patent applications.  

Read more here

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Popular posts

Mary Fuller swearing in

Our agency recently welcomed our newest Regional Director, Mary Fuller, leading our Silicon Valley Regional Office in fostering and serving our nation’s innovators all throughout the western United States.


The United States Patent and Trademark Office, called the Patent Office for much of its history, has been headquartered in a whopping 21 locations. Our locations ranged from a purpose-built facility that also housed the first federally funded museum collection in U.S. history to temporary housing in a Richmond, Va. tobacco warehouse during World War II.

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Patent office in 1900

HBCUs educate the next generation of Black inventors, scientists, and engineers. About ¼ of all Black graduates in #STEM fields attended an #HBCU. USPTO Deputy Director Brent joined @USMBDA Under Secretary Cravins at #HBCUWeek to talk about how HBCUs can harness federal funding.

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Deputy Derrick Brent at an HBCU week panel

Born in the Dominican Republic in 1935, Johnny Pacheco immigrated at a young age to New York City. He attended the Juilliard School and soon made a name for himself as a flutist, percussionist, and band leader. But it was salsa music that brought him into the global spotlight. In 1968, Pacheco and his business partner Jerry Masucci filed a trademark application for the name “Fania,” which was fast becoming the world’s premiere label for salsa music.

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Johnny Pacheco Fania album cover

Each year, the USPTO, in partnership with National Inventors Hall of Fame, brings invention education to hundreds of thousands of students. This week, Director Kathi Vidal joined a 5th grade class at Rota Elementary School at the U.S. Naval Station Rota base in Rota, Spain for an invention challenge.

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Director Vidal with students in Rota Spain