Washington, D.C. (January 4, 2023) – Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox is proud to announce that seven attorneys have been elected to the directorship effective January 1, 2023. This year represents the largest class of new directors in Sterne Kessler’s 45-year history. The seven attorneys who have been promoted to director are: Daniel K. Choo, Ph.D.; Robert E. Niemeier; Olga A. Partington, Ph.D.; Anna G. Phillips; Amirali Sharifi, Ph.D.; Ian Soule; and Lauren A. Watt.
“On behalf of our entire firm community, congratulations to each of our new directors. We are proud of the hard work and invaluable contributions that each has made over the years to our clients and to our firm. We are fortunate to have each one, and I’m grateful that we can welcome into the directorship such a large class of talented new directors,” said Managing Director Michael B. Ray.
Read more about Sterne Kessler’s new directors:
- Daniel K. Choo, Ph.D., is a director in Sterne Kessler's Biotechnology & Chemical Practice Group. He represents both domestic and international clients, in various stages of development and commercialization, on various aspects of patent protection. In particular, Daniel has extensive experience on patent procurement, portfolio management, invalidity, non-infringement, freedom-to-operate, and patentability opinions. Daniel's scientific expertise includes immunology, molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry, virology, bacteriology, antisense technology, antibodies, cell-based therapies, diagnostics, microbiome, bacteriotherapy, and vaccines. He earned his Ph.D. in immunology from Emory University under Dr. Rafi Ahmed. There, he focused on elucidating the mechanisms involved in the generation and long-term maintenance of immunological memory cells after viral infection. Daniel received his J.D., cum laude, from the University of North Carolina School of Law and his B.A. in biology and classics from Franklin and Marshall College.
- Robert E. Niemeier is a director in Sterne Kessler’s Trial & Appellate Practice Group. Robert represents clients in intellectual property disputes before the International Trade Commission, the District Courts, the Federal Circuit, and before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board in a variety of technical fields including software, consumer electronics, industrial equipment, medical devices, and pharmaceuticals. Robert has extensive experience across a broad spectrum of litigation proceedings including performing pre-suit investigations, managing fact and expert discovery, preparing expert and fact witnesses, attending depositions and hearings, performing validity and infringement analyses, formulating claim construction positions, and drafting dispositive and non-dispositive motions. He earned his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School and his B.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
- Olga A. Partington, Ph.D., is a director in Sterne Kessler's Biotechnology & Chemical Practice Group. Olga has substantial experience in inter partes review proceedings and has been involved in several other contested proceedings before the USPTO, such as inter partes re-examinations and interferences. Her practice also includes domestic and foreign patent prosecution, particularly chemical patents. Olga gained extensive technical experience in the areas of nucleic acid chemistry, organic, bioinorganic, and biological chemistry, enzymology, and spectroscopy in the laboratories of Dr. Sheila David and Nobel Prize laureate Dr. Paul Modrich. She earned her J.D. from The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law and her Ph.D. and B.S. in chemistry from the University of Utah.
- Anna G. Phillips is a director in Sterne Kessler’s Trial & Appellate Practice Group. She represents clients in complex patent matters in federal district courts and the International Trade Commission, in contested proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and in appeals at the Federal Circuit. She has extensive patent litigation experience in a variety of technological areas, including pharmaceuticals, medical devices, mechanical devices, and electronics. Anna has been involved in all stages of litigation, from pre-suit strategy and injunction practice to trials and appeals. Anna received her J.D., cum laude, from the University of San Diego School of Law. She earned a B.S. in architectural engineering and B.A. in the Plan II Honors Program from The University of Texas at Austin.
- Amirali Sharifi, Ph.D., is a director in Sterne Kessler’s Electronics Practice Group where he is involved in the preparation and prosecution of patent applications, inter partes review of U.S. patents, ex parte and inter partes re-examination of U.S. patents, conducting prior art searches, and preparation of invalidity and non-infringement opinions. Amirali’s intellectual property practice focuses on a range of technical areas including: wireless communication systems; digital communication systems; networking; data coding; data compression; cryptography; lithography systems; and biometric system. He received his J.D. from The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law, his Ph.D. and M.Sc. in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Maryland, College Park, and his B.S. in electrical engineering from Sharif University of Technology.
- Ian Soule is a director in Sterne Kessler’s Mechanical & Design Practice Group. His work includes the strategic preparation and prosecution of high-value patent applications for various mechanical, electromechanical, software-based, and biomedical technologies for a variety of clients. His current area of focus is in managing complex global portfolios in need of development to get them ready for monetization efforts—while PTAB-proofing the issuing claims. His experience on both sides of enforcement/PTAB actions brings a unique and valued perspective to both global prosecution strategy development and client counselling as a burgeoning trusted business advisor. Ian is actively involved in Patent Office Litigation, currently serving as counsel in several inter partes reviews having parallel district court litigation. He is also actively involved in due diligence activities along with strategic opinion drafting on patentability, freedom-to-operate, validity, and infringement. Ian received his J.D. from The George Washington University Law School, with honors, and his B.S., magna cum laude, in mechanical engineering from Michigan Technological University.
- Lauren A. Watt is a director in Sterne Kessler’s Trial & Appellate Practice Group. She concentrates her practice in the area of patent litigation, including matters before federal district courts, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and the United States International Trade Commission. Lauren has litigated cases involving a diverse array of technologies, including pharmaceuticals, mechanical devices, electronics, and software and is experienced in case strategy and management from pre-suit to post-trial. Lauren received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law and her B.A. in anthropology with a political science minor from Brigham Young University.
About Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox
Based in Washington, D.C. and renowned for more than four decades for dedication to the protection, transfer, and enforcement of intellectual property rights, Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox is one of the most highly regarded intellectual property specialty law firms in the world. Its team of attorneys, registered patent agents, students, and technical specialists include some of the country's most respected practitioners of IP law tackling innovations across a broad spectrum of industries. The firm’s practitioners hold over 50 masters and over 60 doctorate degrees in science or engineering and represent Fortune 500 companies, entrepreneurs, start-ups, inventors, venture capital firms, and universities in a client service driven environment that is welcoming, inclusive, and intellectually stimulating. Visit the firm online at sternekessler.com.