Alumnus Named U.S. Commissioner of Patents

Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering alumnus Robert "Bob" Stoll (B.S. '69) has been nominated as the United States Patent and Trademark Office's (USPTO) new Commissioner for Patents. Stoll's five-year appointment will begin when the retirement of the current commissioner, John Doll, becomes official.

During his 27 years with the USTPO, Stoll has served in a variety of leadership positions since his original role as a patent examiner, including Supervisory Patent Examiner, Executive Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Commissioner of Patents and Trademarks, Administrator of the Office of Legislative and International Affairs, Director of Enforcement, and Dean of Training and Education for the USPTO. He has been a leader in establishing international policies that prevent counterfeiting and piracy, as well as an educator of both the public and foreign officials on American patents, trademarks, and other intellectual properties. In addition to his degree in chemical engineering, Stoll holds J.D. from Catholic university.

In a press release issued by the Department of Commerce, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO David Kappos cited Stoll's "rare expertise in patent policy and practice, as well as a strong command of the inner-workings of the USPTO and the federal government" in his decision to nominate the U-Md. alumnus for the Commissioner position. U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said he believes Stoll's comprehensive knowledge will further the organization's "aggressive" goal of reducing the amount of time it takes to process new patent applications, something Locke believes will promote the development of new products and services, which will in turn stimulate the nation's economy.

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Read the USPTO's press release »

Published October 8, 2009