As of July 17, 2023. Subject to Change.

Brian G. Aitchison
Director of Intellectual Property Operations
Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP

Brian G. Aitchison has more than 30 years’ experience in IP prosecution. Aitchison has a deep background in IP operations and understands the combined utilization of people, process and technology to maximize process efficiency, mitigate risk and provide stellar service to clients. He has experience in providing services related to assessments of IP operations, recommendations for process improvements and the implementation of IP software and automation.

Daniel W. Auer
Firm Administrator
Hauptman Ham, LLP

Daniel W. Auer is Firm Administrator at Hauptman Ham, LLP, an intellectual property firm. In this capacity, he is responsible for managing the overall administration and operations of the firm, including supervising all staff who don’t practice law. Prior to joining Hauptman Ham, Auer was a federal agent for over 33 years, serving in senior leadership positions since November 2001. His final assignment before retiring from federal service was Chief of the Leadership Training Division for the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC) within the Department of Homeland Security. In this role, he was the Senior Manager responsible for the overall development, delivery and administration of the FLETC’s leadership training programs and research.

Coalton S. Bennett, Ph.D.
Senior Patent Agent
McCarter & English, LLP

Coalton Bennett is a senior patent agent at McCarter & English. He has eleven years of patent prosecution and counseling experience. Over the course of his career, he has prosecuted applications both domestically and internationally for large high-tech companies as well as large pharmaceutical and medical device companies. Prior to his career as a patent agent, Coalton was a member of the Technical staff at MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Before that he pursued his PhD in electrical engineering at Cornell University. 

Stacey A. L. Best, Esq.
Executive Director
Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers, Inc.

Stacey A. L. Best, Esq. is responsible for the strategic direction, daily operations and management of the staff of Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers and Law Office Management Assistance Program (LOMAP). Best represents and participates with key stakeholders at various agencies and committees of the Supreme Judicial Court (SJC), including the SJC Standing Committee on Lawyer Well–Being, the Board of Bar Overseers (BBO) and the Standing Advisory Committee on Professionalism to improve the quality of the legal profession. Most recently, Best served as the Acting Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the BBO where she investigated alleged violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct and litigated all stages of the disciplinary proceedings including all appeals.

Micheal Binns, Esq.
Head of Patents & Trade Secrets

Micheal Binns, Esq., is Head of Patent Portfolio Strategy for Meta’s Patents & Trade Secrets. He chairs Meta’s Black@Legal affinity group, which focuses on ensuring an equitable experience for diverse employees in the legal department. He is a Founder and board member of ADAPT, a diversity, equity and inclusion collective; the board chair of Page Turners Make Great Learners in Atlanta; a board member on the National Council on Patent Practicum; and a trustee on the Foundation for Advancement of Diversity in IP Law.

Ericka R. Brundage
Legal Assistant Support Manager
Merchant & Gould, PC

Ericka Brundage is Merchant & Gould’s Legal Assistant Support Manager and Diversity Committee Chair. She ensures procedures and processes are consistent, all attorney and non-attorney professionals are supported to provide excellent client service and facilitates a community of belonging in the workplace.

She believes team collaboration and diversity of thought are the keys to success and strives toward increased diversity within Intellectual Property throughout the legal industry.

Christopher Burger
Executive Vice President of Customer Service
Trexo Global

Christopher Burger is a seasoned business executive with more than 15 years of experience in intellectual property (IP). Burger helps law firms across the United States better manage their patent and trademark prosecution operations groups. He is responsible for ensuring the successful delivery, implementation and use of Trexo Global products and services to customers and ensuring they address their business priorities. Before Trexo Global, Burger held various leadership positions spanning sales, business development, channel partnerships and customer success at companies, including CPA Global, Clarivate and Xerox.

Richard Fernandez
eMod Project Manager
United States Patent and Trademark Office

Richard Fernandez is an eMod Project Manager at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). In this role, Fernandez oversees the development of the new tool to replace EFS-Web and the Patent Application Information Retrieval (PAIR) system. He has extensive experience working with the Patent Electronic Business Center and currently serves as the manager of the entire call center. Fernandez received a bachelor’s degree in information systems from the University of Maryland Baltimore County in 2001 and started working at the USPTO in 2009.

James D. Hallenbeck, JD
President and Chief Executive Officer
Black Hills IP, LLC

James D. Hallenbeck, JD, is President and Chief Executive Officer of Black Hills IP, LLC. A patent attorney with more than 20 years of experience, Hallenbeck focuses on patent portfolio construction and prosecution in various technology areas including complex computer software systems and intellectual property (IP) operations. He also worked as a software engineer and analyst, designing and developing global software systems supporting a wide range of industries including financial services, automotive and insurance.

Joshua Hauser
New Applications Manager and Chair of the Finance Subcommittee of Patent Pathways
Harrity & Harrity LLP

Joshua Hauser is the New Applications Manager at Harrity with more than 15 years of experience in the IP field. He is a founding member of the Patent Pathways Diversity Committee, chairs the Finance Subcommittee and has actively contributed toward shaping and developing the program since its inception. During his three-plus years with Harrity, he has been awarded the Firm Contributor Award, the Teamwork Core Value Award and created a Sustainable Solutions Green Committee at the firm to tackle pressing environmental issues.

Fiona Trevelyan Hornblower
President and Chief Executive Officer
The NALP Foundation

Fiona Trevelyan Hornblower provides leadership for the National Association for Law Placement (NALP) Foundation’s mission to improve the quality and delivery of legal services through research, education and the expansion of diversity within the legal profession. She has held numerous leadership positions in both national and local legal and recruiting organizations, including NALP and the American Bar Association (ABA). She regularly publishes and speaks on a wide variety of issues in the legal profession.

Sherri Jarrell
IP Practice Group Manager
Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP

Sherri Jarrell has 28 years of legal experience with 16 of those concentrated in IP. She has experience as both an assistant on the admin side of the practice group and as a Paralegal in Patent and Trademark Prosecution as well as IP Litigation. In 2022, she joined Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP as the IP Practice Group Manager.

Bob Karau
Credit and Collections
Merchant & Gould P.C.

Bob Karau is a dynamic communicator who managed credit and collections for three national firms and a Fortune 500 Corporation. Karau is a contributing author to the 2019, 2020 and 2022 editions of the NACM Manual of Credit and Commercial Laws. He is also President of his local Credit and Financial Development Division (CFDD) of the National Association of Credit Management (NACM) and is a recipient of the CFDD Credit and Finance National Distinguished Member Achievement Award.

Danny Katz
Legal Operations Lead
Seed IP

Danny Katz is a dynamic legal operations leader with a diverse background in intellectual property (IP) law, cross-cultural communication and creative expression. With expertise in knowledge management, onboarding, mentorship and retention, Katz has spearheaded numerous projects, while fostering collaboration and driving efficiency in IP law. As a passionate advocate for inclusivity and diversity, he empowers legal professionals to unlock their full potential, navigate today's complex legal landscape and thrive in a global, interconnected environment.

Amanda R. Koplos, CLM, CPA
Executive Director
Shuffield Lowman & Wilson, PA

Amanda Koplos, CLM, CPA, is the Executive Director for Central Florida-based Shuffield, Lowman and Wilson, PA. She has 18 years of experience in law firm management at firms of multiple sizes. Legal management isn’t just a career for her; it’s a passion. In support of that passion, Koplos has been active in ALA since 2005. She has held numerous positions at the local and international levels. In May 2023, she became President-Elect of the Association.

Katlyn Lee
Customer Success Manager
Patent Bots, Inc.

Katlyn Lee joined the Patent Bots team in August 2022 as the Customer Success Manager. Previously, Lee was the Operations Manager for Edell, Shapiro & Finnan, an intellectual property law firm. In that role, she acted as the firm's primary point of contact for technology-related decisions. She has more than 10 years of experience helping law firms understand their needs, recognize the importance of technology choices on their daily operations, and streamline their legal technology platforms to achieve optimal productivity and customer satisfaction.

Ann McCrackin
Patent Bots, Inc.

Ann McCrackin is a contractor with Patent Bots and an Adjunct Law Professor with the University of New Hampshire Franklin Pierce School of Law. Previously, McCrackin was the President of Black Hills IP. She is a legal automation, intellectual property operations and IP docketing process expert and a patent attorney with extensive experience in both domestic and international patent prosecution. McCrackin was a Professor of Law and the Director of the nationally recognized Patent Prosecution and Procedure Program at Franklin Pierce Law Center (now the University of New Hampshire Franklin Pierce School of Law). At Franklin Pierce, she directed the program and taught courses in advanced aspects of practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Miranda Mitchell
Patent Practice Supervisor
Dechert LLP

Miranda Mitchell has 11 years of experience in IP and is the Patent Practice Supervisor at Dechert LLP. She started her career as an assistant and worked her way up to a paralegal. She has extensive U.S. and foreign prosecution experience/knowledge. She currently oversees the day-to-day operations, training, and staffing for the paralegal team at Dechert.

Vaveca Moss, MHRM, SHRM-SCP, DDI
Director of Employee Relations, Talent Acquisition
Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP

Vaveca Moss, MHRM, SHRM-SCP, DDI, is an executive with over 29 years of leadership experience in human resources. Moss is the Director of Employee Relations and Talent Acquisition at Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP. With a master’s and bachelor’s degree in human resources management and organization development, she is a strategy-driven executive with a passion for people.

Tina Powers
IP Operations Manager
Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.

Tina Powers has more than 20 years of experience in IP and is the Manager of IP Operations for Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. Powers is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the IP practice, including staffing, technical solutions and outsourcing projects. She has worked in various roles within IP, including Chief Operating Officer of the Dennemeyer North American offices.

Kimberly Williams
Supervisory Patent Information Technology Specialist
United States Patent and Trademark Office

Kimberly Williams, a Supervisory Patent Information Technology Specialist at the United States Patent and Trademark Office, assists in the development of Patent Center, the next generation filing tool that will replace EFS-Web and PAIR. She has more than 25 years of experience as a Patent Examiner, which is instrumental in developing application validations in the new tool.