Pierce Law Institutes Intellectual Property Amicus Clinic

Although it seemed similar to that long associated with the New Hampshire Appellate Defender clinic, the proposed IP Amicus Clinic had little in common. Most notably, the proposed clinic would not represent clients, much less ones already convicted of serious crimes


In 1997, with the able assistance of Gary Bridge ’99, I wrote an amicus brief supporting the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) before the Federal Circuit in the landmark Zurko case. Since then, including the Supreme Court sequel, I have filed or joined other professors in submitting amicus briefs in several U.S. Courts of Appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court. Most recently, Richard Castellano ’06 and Taylor Evans ’07 helped prepare an amicus brief for the eBay case.

Such activities have also encompassed legislative and administrative proceedings. For example,
Alicia Novi ’07 and Kate Winstanley ’07 recently helped prepare a PTO rulemaking petition. It asked
that the process for determining qualifications needed to sit for the so-called “patent bar” be
opened for public comment.

Long intrigued by the possibility of involving more students, I proposed creation of an IP Amicus
Clinic. Encouraged by colleagues and members of our Advisory Committee on IP, we commenced to
flesh out the idea.

Few constraints

Although it seemed similar to that long associated with the New Hampshire Appellate Defender clinic,
the proposed IP Amicus Clinic had little in common. Most notably, the proposed clinic would not
represent clients, much less ones already convicted of serious crimes.

Moreover, the Amicus Clinic can undertake projects-and issues within them-solely as a function of the interests and competence of participants. It can also consider a broader range of issues
and influence many kinds of decision makers.

To make the most of such opportunities, we decided to seek two highly-qualified senior assistants
to help supervise student participants and identify matters warranting our participation. In return, those assistants would be appointed as Graduate Fellows and have their LLM tuition waived.

The following brief descriptions of our 2006-07 Fellows demonstrate that we have been favored with outstanding success. J. Scott Anderson, the more senior of the two, holds a BS in mechanical
engineering from the Tennessee Technological University and was an engineer before attending
law school. Since graduating cum laude from the Georgia State University College of Law in 1994,
his practice has spanned administrative, trial and appellate work. Currently a senior associate in the Intellectual Property Group of Alston & Bird in Atlanta, GA Anderson aspires to teach after completing our program.

Mary Anne Copeland, the other distinguished Graduate Fellow, came strongly recommended by Lars Smith LLM ’98 who now teaches at Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville. Copeland, one of his students, has just completed work for her JD at Brandeis School of Law and also holds a BA in biology from the University of Louisville. Among her many distinctions, she counts chairing the Brandeis Honor Council and being president of the Brandeis Student Bar Association during her senior year.

Looking to the future

First, we hope that readers will nominate equally outstanding Graduate Fellows for 2007-08 and
beyond. Second, we welcome suggestions with good potential for providing Pierce Law students with
hands-on training in analytical, persuasive writing – as well as to immerse them in the foundations of a strong intellectual property system. Third, we also welcome suggestions for potential sponsors to support the Graduate Fellows beyond tuition waivers now offered.

About Tom Field, Intellectual Property Professor (106 Articles)

Thomas G. Field, Jr.
ipFrontline – IP Law
Tom, an Emeritus Professor of Law, helped found Franklin Pierce Law Center in 1973. There and at other schools, since graduation from NYU in 1970, he taught intellectual property courses as well as administrative process, antitrust, business associations, consumer product regulation, labor law, products liability, property, and many courses involving intersections of law with science and technology.

He has also organized several conferences covering IP and other law-technology topics. In 1988, he founded the peer-reviewed journal, Risk: Health, Safety and Environment, and served as its editor-in chief until 2000. In 2003 and 2004, two of his casebooks were published by Carolina Academic Press; they are now available for non-profit use and distribution at http://ssrn.com/author=345360.

A native of Morgantown, WV, Tom received his degree in chemistry from West Virginia University in 1964 and his JD from WVU in 1969. The following year, he received an LL.M (Trade Regulations) from New York University, where he was the 1969-70 Food and Drug Law Fellow.

In 1966-67, Tom rook a break from law school to be a patent examiner (polyolefin blends). Many exciting things were happening in the patent world, but he did not hear about them or understand their significance until much later.

As related in more detail on his home page, Tom has had a wide-ranging career, but his primary source of satisfaction continues to come from having played a major role in developing the unrivaled IP program at the University of New Hampshire School of Law.

Visit Tom’s
Home Page Here.

Contact: Website