The Hon. Michelle Lee

Former Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office | VP of Machine Learning Solutions Lab, Amazon

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About The Hon. Michelle Lee

Michelle Lee is the former Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), 2015-2017. As the first female to lead the USPTO, executive at Google, and any other venture she pursues, Michelle Lee is constantly at the forefront of the newest innovations. Innovations that are disrupting our industries and driving spectacular growth in the world.

It started early on, growing up around the huge wave of Silicon Valley companies that were revolutionizing our world, inspiring her to build her own hand-held radio as a child. Her love of technology inspired her to simultaneously earn bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering and computer science from MIT. She later earned her law degree at Stanford University’s School of Law because she wanted to work on the most cutting edge legal and policy issues facing high-tech companies.

Lee’s career is as remarkable as it is diverse. She is an MIT-trained computer scientist where she wrote her thesis on artificial intelligence, and an attorney and former law partner at Fenwick & West, Deputy General Counsel and Head of Patents and Patent Strategy for Google, co-founder of the Chief IP Counsels (ChIPs), the first woman Under Secretary of Commerce, and Director of the USPTO in our country’s 200+ year history.

Her focus on creating an environment that assures inventors and innovators the chance to grow and prosper, leading her into government service as Director of the USPTO’s Silicon Valley satellite office. In 2015 she was unanimously confirmed by the US Senate as the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and took the helm of USPTO’s 10,000-employee organization. During her tenure, she led a 13,000 person agency with a $3.4 billion annual budget. She modernized the 225-year-old agency, streamlining the review processes and creating the maximum economic benefit for American inventors and businesses.

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