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AIPLA President’s blog: FICPI, ACPC and ABA meetings

AIPLA President Jeff Lewis reflects on the holiday season and outlines his busy travel schedule over the next month

The holiday season allowed me a travel respite, although my work with AIPLA remained as busy as ever. During the break, we submitted comments on everything from Chinese Patent Law to ICANN proceedings, and worked on finalizing several Amicus briefs. The break from travel also gave me time to consider the schedule of the AIPLA President.

As I’ve mentioned, one of AIPLA’s strategic initiatives is to increase its global presence. It sure feels like my travel schedule has achieved that goal, at least in some respects. But there is still a lot of ground to cover (for the moment I have cancelled my monthly Metro North ticket), and so I thought I would let you know about upcoming trips both foreign and domestic.

At the end of next week I will be leaving for the Executive Committee meeting of the International Federation of Industrial Property Attorneys, known as FICPI (an acronym for Fédération Internationale des Conseils en Propriété Industrielle) to be held in Cartagena, Colombia. I’m interested in understanding the various views on intellectual property that will be coming from many different areas of the world and seeing how they all intersect. I have already been looking at the working groups that will present on everything from the packaging of tobacco products (particularly proposals to remove trademarks from the packaging) to the refund of search and examination fees.

Straight from Cartagena I will be going to Florida to spend time at the winter meeting of the Association of Corporate Patent Counsel (ACPC) in Orlando. A number of in-house AIPLA members will be there and I look forward to hearing about needs and interests from the corporate side. After that, it is off to Tampa where AIPLA will be having its Mid-Winter Institute.

The Mid-Winter Institute this year should be fascinating; its focus is on the role of intellectual property in business. I have often told people that as a litigator I try to remember that the bottom line is the client’s bottom line. The Mid-Winter Institute will really look at this in a broader perspective and keep in mind the broader business interests for all areas of intellectual property. Wayne Sobon, President-Elect of AIPLA, is the officer in charge of this meeting and he is putting in a huge amount of time planning it down to the smallest detail. I am looking forward to a great conference.

After Tampa, I will be home for just a few days and then it’s off to the ABA meeting in Dallas. The Intellectual Property Law Section of ABA and AIPLA consider ourselves sister organizations, and the head of each attends the other’s meetings as an invited guest. It’s always interesting to see how other bar associations operate and the issues that they grapple with, since usually they are the same things that AIPLA is debating.

I will let you know how these trips go, but until then thanks for reading.


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