House IP Caucus Hosts Congressional Roundtables

Representatives Bono, Feeney, Smith and Wexler among participants exploring importance of IP to constituencies and global trade relations

Washington, DC IIPI was recently invited by the House IP Caucus to help organize events designed to educate Members and staffers on ways intellectual property affects economic development domestically and abroad. IIPI hosted two Congressional roundtable discussions for a “standing room only” room of staffers and congressmen earlier this month. The IIPI Congressional Roundtable on Copyright Issues on July 8th focused on the effects of software piracy on US software companies and the relationship between IP enforcement and foreign direct investment abroad. The second event that IIPI organized on behalf of the House IP Caucus, IIPI Congressional Roundtable: An International Perspective on Patents and Trademarks, focused on the efforts over the past 20 years towards international harmonization of patent and trademark examination.

“The IP Caucus has grown significantly since its inception one year ago. The bipartisan group has doubled in size in just one year, attracting the interest of congressional leaders concerned with the protection of intellectual property and gaining support from highly respected members of the IP community,” stated U.S. Rep. Tom Feeney. “Intellectual property matters play a vital role in the success of our nation’s economy and it is rewarding to lead a group dedicated to the protection of the innovative business leaders which keep our country thriving.”

Fifteen Congressmen participated in the first roundtable discussion and five Congressman participated in the second discussion. Representatives Mary Bono, Tom Feeney, Adam Smith and Robert Wexler provided opening remarks. The Honorable James E. Rogan, Partner at Venable LLP and newly appointed Chairman of IIPI’s Board of Advisors, spoke along with Hon. Gerry Mossinghoff, Senior Counsel at Oblon, Spivak, McClelland, Maier & Neustadt, PC and former Commissioner of the USPTO and Herb Wamsley, Executive Director of the Intellectual Property Owners Association at the second roundtable discussion held on July 22nd.

“The tremendous response the House IP Caucus received to these two roundtables indicates that intellectual property issues are of paramount importance to Members of Congress,” observed IIPI CEO, Brad Huther. “The IP Caucus has been taking the lead in educating Members of Congress about the importance of IP. We are pleased that this important subject is getting the attention it deserves.”

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