Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC)

It is time again to nominate three new members to the USPTO’s Patent Public Advisory Committee. The PPAC is a group of nine individuals selected by the Commerce Secretary (on the advice of the PTO Director).  The committee’s purpose is to advise the PTO Director on the management of operations of the Office.  The nine-member PPAC is on a three-year rotating schedule.  Each year three new members are appointed. 

Nominations for this year’s appointment may be sent to Although formal nominations are required, I’m sure that the Chief of Staff would not mind receiving some informal suggestions as well.

Current PPAC Members:

  • Chair – Kevin Rivette (VP IBM IP Strategy, Author of Rembrandts in the Attic) 2006
  • Maximilian A. Grant (Latham & Watkins Partner)
  • Carl E. Gulbrandsen (Managing Director of WARF)
  • Dean L. Kamen (Inventor of Segway)
  • Gerald J. Mossinghoff (Former PTO Director, Oblon Spivak)
  • Lisa K. Norton (Associate at DLA PIPER)
  • Douglas Patton (Patton Design – Product Designer) 2006
  • M. Andrea Ryan (General Counsel TransForm Pharmaceuticals)
  • W. David Westergard (Patent guy at Micron) 2006


13 thoughts on “Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC)

  1. 13

    I nominate Dennis Crouch, the most influential and one of the brightest patent attorneys from the private sector.

  2. 8

    “Moose, Obviously, Mr. Olson is overqualified.”

    Then perhaps we could nominate his sister, who could call the meetings to order with a Tarzan-type yell. Now that would be novel.

  3. 6


    I believe Mr. Olson (PN 6,368,227) will be too busy returning to junior high school next month to participate fully.


  4. 5

    Look, there’s no shortage of advice for improving PTO operations. The problem is the PTO has repeatedly ignored advice from all parties and forged ahead with its own agenda. The prime example being the near universal disdain for the proposed continuation and IDS rules which the PTO can’t seem to do without. This is endemic of the administration. Look at the 911 commission and what happened with their advice, to give one example. Why would anyone serve on such a panel? You get to spend hours of your valuable time to generate a report with well-considered and researched prognoses for various courses of action, only to have it sent to the circular file? Ya. Thanks, but I got better things to do with my time, like taking my dog for a walk. Lots of luck, nominees!!

  5. 4

    and yet no one seems to care about having some Constitutional expertise on the panel. Ya know there are other matters just as important as economy and efficiency . . . like the national character- and I am not talking about the man in the White House. Ooo ahh the inventor of a scooter is on the panel (the Segway). Now doesn’t that just add to the crescendo of competence. Why don’t we put the guy on who invented the method of swinging on a swing 🙂

  6. 1

    How about that people, instead of nominating new candidates to the PPAC, instead nominate that the PTO should shut down the farce otherwise known as the PPAC? The PPAC has never effectively asserted any real oversight of PTO operations, has done nothing to fight the many damaging new initiative and rules changes coming out of PTO management, has done nothing to help improve efforts to more honestly measure patent quality and examination operations, etc. It is little more than an opportunity to earn a new line on a resume, and is provided with no real support to investigate and challenge. The head of the PPAC is always chosen to be someone who will not provide any assertive leadership, someone who is too connected (usually to the problems the PPAC is supposed to address). In its existence, patent quality and PTO management has continued to get worse. Obviously, PPAC is having no effect and should be flushed.

    So why then deceive the public with the existence of the PPAC? So I nominate that we all nominate that the PTO shut down the PPAC.

Comments are closed.