United States Senator
May 6, 2004
Statement of Chairman Orrin G. Hatch
Before the United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary
Hearing on the Nomination of
Jonathan W. Dudas, of Virginia, to be
Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office
We welcome Jon Dudas to the Committee. I am impressed with his qualifications, and I commend the President for nominating such a fine individual to the post of Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. I also welcome the family, friends and other guests of Mr. Dudas.
I have reviewed the record of Mr. Dudas and I find him to be an excellent choice for this position. Permit me a moment to highlight his distinguished background.
Upon graduation from the University of Chicago Law School in 1993 with honors, Mr. Dudas joined the law firm of Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP. In 1995, he joined the staff of Representative Henry J. Hyde as a Legislative Counsel, and then joined the staff of the United States House Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Courts and Intellectual Property as a Counsel.
From 1997 to 2001, he served as the Staff Director and Deputy General Counsel to the full United States House Committee on the Judiciary. He then joined Speaker J. Dennis Hastert's staff as Counsel for Legal Policy and Senior Floor Assistant in 2001. In 2002, he became the Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. He has served as the Acting Under Secretary since January 11, 2004.
Mr. Dudas is taking on a big assignment because intellectual property plays a key role, if an often unappreciated role, in the U.S. economy.
The issuance of patents and trademarks reflect the creative genius of America's inventors. Our nation is respected worldwide as the leader in technological innovation and product development. It is essential that the Patent and Trademark Office operate efficiently and fairly. I commend the 7,000+ dedicated civil servants at USPTO for all of their hard work and valuable contributions. That is why this Committee acted unanimously last week to pass legislation, H.R. 1561, to stop the diversion of patent fees.
I know that Mr. Dudas is committed to make the USPTO run even more effectively.
I am confident Jonathan W. Dudas will continue to serve this country and the Department of Commerce with distinction, and I look forward to his speedy confirmation.
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