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May 21, 2008

CONTACTS: Claire Duggan: (202) 994-0616;
Adela de la Torre: (202) 994-6424;


Whealan is Experienced in Intellectual Property Policy and Litigation in All Branches of Government

WASHINGTON - The George Washington University Law School is pleased to announce the appointment of attorney John M. Whealan to head its top-ranked Intellectual Property Law Program.

Whealan comes to GW Law from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) where he served as deputy general counsel for intellectual property law and solicitor since 2001. Whealan represented the USPTO in all intellectual property litigation in federal court and advised the agency on a variety of policy issues. During his tenure, Whealan estimates he argued approximately 30 cases before the Federal Circuit and, with his staff, was responsible for briefing and arguing more than 250 cases. He also assisted the U.S. Solicitor General on virtually every intellectual property case that has been heard by the Supreme Court since 2001. Whealan has also served as counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary for the last year. 

"We're thrilled to have someone of John's breadth and depth of experience join us in the important role of associate dean for intellectual property law studies," said Frederick M. Lawrence, dean of GW's Law School. "Our IP program is one of the oldest and greatest strengths of our institution. The great respect that John has earned from the bench, the bar, in government, and in academia will help us to build on our existing academic strengths and forge even stronger ties with our alumni community in the IP field."

Prior to 2001, Whealan was a staff attorney for the U.S. International Trade Commission where he litigated several investigations involving intellectual property matters. He has clerked at both the appellate and trial court levels, serving as law clerk to Judge Randall R. Rader, J.D. '78, of the Federal Circuit and Judge James T. Turner of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Whealan has engaged in private practice at Fish & Neave in New York and worked as a design engineer for General Electric. For the past 10 years, he has taught as an adjunct professor of law at The Franklin Pierce Law Center and also has taught courses at George Mason University School of Law and Chicago-Kent College of Law.
Whealan received a J.D. from Harvard Law School and holds a graduate degree from Drexel University and an undergraduate degree from Villanova University in electrical engineering.

GW Law has been a leader in intellectual property education and scholarship for more than 100 years. When the Law School established a master's of patent law program in 1895, its alumni had already written the patents for Bell's telephone, Mergenthaler's linotype machine, and Eastman's roll film camera, among hundreds of other inventions, and dozens more alumni had worked in the Patent Office. Over the intervening century, GW Law has bolstered its expertise in patent law with complementary strengths in copyright, trademark, communications, computer and internet regulation, electronic commerce, and genetics and medicine. For the fourth year in a row, GW Law's Intellectual Property Program has been ranked third in the nation in U.S. News & World Report's 2009 edition of "America's Best Graduate Schools."

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