Sterne Kessler elects four new directors and promotes four partners to the position of lawyer


WASHINGTON, January 12, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox is proud to announce the election of four new directors: Tyler J. Dutton, Ivy Clarice Estoesta, Michael “Mick” F. Gross, Ph.D., and Kristina Caggiano Kelly, effective January 1, 2022. In addition, the firm congratulates four partners on their promotion to the board: Joshua G. McCoy*, Stephen A. Merrill, Harish Ruchandani, and Tyler Tassone.

“On behalf of Sterne Kessler, I am delighted to congratulate our new Directors and Advisors. Each is an excellent lawyer and each provides excellent service to our clients. We enthusiastically welcome Tyler, Ivy, Mick and Kristina to our leadership and we are delighted to have Josh, Steve, Harish and Tyler among our group of talented lawyers. I am grateful, not only for their work on behalf of our clients, but also for their continued contributions to the culture and camaraderie of Sterne Kessler “, said the Director Director Michael B. Ray.

The new directors of the firm are:

  • Tyler J. Dutton is Director of Sterne Kessler’s Electronic Practice Group. His practice emphasizes inter partes examination procedure at the United States Patent and Trademark Office. He has litigation experience developing invalidity and non-infringement positions in the United States District Court and International Trade Commission, as well as arguing appeals before the Court of appeal from the United States to the federal circuit. Tyler has also tackled several backdating cases, including one of the first cases to successfully backdate a reference to prior art in a inter partes review. His technical expertise is in anything that sends, receives or processes data, in particular vehicle control signaling, data management systems, data coding, data engineering and graphics processing. He holds a JD from Emory University law school and a BS in electronics engineering technology from South Dakota State University.
  • Ivy Clarice Estoesta is Director of the Mechanical and Design Practice Group and Sterne Kessler’s Brand and Trademark Protection Practice. She advises a wide variety of clients on strategic sourcing and intellectual property rights enforcement in the United States and globally, with a focus on design patents, trademarks and copyrights. author. Ivy has niche expertise in U.S. and foreign design rights related to Graphical User Interface (GUI), Augmented Reality (AR), and Virtual Reality (VR) designs, and is the company’s go-to resource for copyright issues, particularly for visual works including digital/NFT art. Joining the firm over a decade ago, Ivy began her career at the firm as a legal assistant in the biotechnology and chemistry practice group, then transitioned into the mechanical and the practice of trademarks, progressing to student associate, associate, then attorney, before being appointed a director. Ivy holds a JD from the Francis King Carey School of Law at the University of Maryland and a BA in Art History. with honors and a minor in Chemistry from Wake Forest University.
  • Michael “Mick” Gross, Ph.D., is Director of Sterne Kessler’s Biotechnology and Chemical Practice Group. Specialized in organic, organometallic and medicinal chemistry; and drug discovery, his practice includes preparing and prosecuting U.S. and foreign patent applications; perform patentability, validity, infringement and freedom to operate analyses; advise on transactional matters, including joint research agreements, non-disclosure agreements and material transfer agreements; and strategic IP advice. Prior to joining the company, Mick was employed by a biopharmaceutical company as a principal investigator specializing in small molecule drug discovery in cardiovascular and pain therapeutic areas. He conducted postdoctoral research on asymmetric catalytic hydrogenation reactions to design a practical synthesis of beta-branched alpha-amino acids, at Duke University, and demonstrated that asymmetric reductions could be achieved in supercritical fluids, at Los Alamos National Laboratories. Mick earned a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Virginia, studying the synthetic utility of Fischer carbene heterobimetallic complexes. He also holds a Juris Doctorate from the University of Baltimore Law School and a BS in Chemistry from Franklin and Marshall College.
  • Kristina Caggiano Kelly is Director of Sterne Kessler’s Trial and Appeals Practice Group, representing clients at all stages of litigation before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, International Trade Commission, District Courts, Court of appeal of the United States for the Federal Circuit and the Supreme Court of the United States. She has experience in both inter partes patent litigation and prosecution in a wide variety of technology fields and venues, including Hatch-Waxman filings, interference practices, and opinion works. She worked for the Hon. Federal Circuit Sharon Prost. Kristina earned her JD, Wharton Certificate in Business and Public Policy, from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, her BA in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry from Rutgers University, Henry Rutgers Honors and her BA in Philosophy from Rutgers University, with the highest departmental distinction. honors.

The new lawyers of the firm are:

  • Joshua G. McCoy is an associate in Sterne Kessler’s Biotechnology and Chemical Practice Group. With his technical background in organic synthesis, medicinal chemistry, and drug discovery and development, he assists in the preparation and prosecution of U.S. and foreign patent applications as well as opinion analysis and go revision procedure. Before getting his JD from the University of Maine School of Law, Josh earned his Masters in Chemistry from the University of Virginia research on the synthesis of organic natural products, then worked as a medical chemist for the National Institutes of Health and a large pharmaceutical company. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from University of Wittenberg.
  • Stephen A. Merrill is an attorney in Sterne Kessler’s Mechanical and Design Practice Group, focusing on the preparation and prosecution of utility patent applications in the United States and abroad. Steve has experience preparing and pursuing applications in a variety of mechanical arts including footwear, sportswear, physiological sensor systems, electronic devices, fixtures, packaging, display systems and architecture, engines, vehicle systems technologies, beverage dispensing systems and other consumer products. some products. Steve also has extensive experience in post-grant litigation at the USPTO, including patent defense in inter partes patent review and challenge proceedings in inter partes review and re-examination proceedings. He also performs analyzes of the patent landscape, patentability, freedom to operate and infringement to advise clients on offensive and defensive patent strategies. Steve holds a JD from the George Washington School of Law and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Brigham Young University.
  • Harish Ruchandani is an attorney in Sterne Kessler’s Electronic Practice Group, where he prepares and prosecutes US and foreign patent applications. Harish’s technical expertise covers many areas of computing and technology including computer networking, data and memory management, multi-processing technologies, image processing, geospatial data analysis , executing and processing virtual machines, HTML, CSS, Javascript, web analytics, touch screen and tablet computing. , research technologies, network security, interface design, Java applications, packet routing, financial products and CRM. Prior to joining the company, Harish was a patent examiner at the United States Patent and Trademark Office, where he reviewed patent applications focused on multiple processing technologies, such as virtual machines, management tasks and processes, resource sharing and object-oriented multitasking. , load balancing, semaphores and priority scheduling. He earned a BS in Computer Science from George Mason University.
  • Tyler Tassone is an associate in Sterne Kessler’s Mechanical and Design Practice Group. His practice focuses on the preparation and prosecution of U.S. and foreign patent applications as well as strategic counsel and portfolio management for clients in a variety of consumer product industries, including athletic equipment, footwear, apparel, fitness monitors, product packaging and beverage dispensing systems. . Tyler’s practice also encompasses the management of matters involving medical devices, such as analyte monitors, state-of-the-art drug delivery devices, and blood testing systems. He has extensive experience working with a wide variety of technologies, from high performance gasket assemblies for semiconductor processing and downhole applications, to thermoplastic composite materials and molding methods, energy systems renewable, gun accessories and valve assemblies. Its client base ranges from Fortune 500 companies and global medical device manufacturers to start-ups and individual innovators. Tyler holds a JD, cum laude, from Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law and a BS, Hons, in Chemical Engineering from the University of Virginia.

*Effective March 1, 2021

About Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox
Situated at Washington DC and renowned for more than four decades for its dedication to the protection, transfer and enforcement of intellectual property rights, Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox is one of the most respected intellectual property law firms in the world. Its team of lawyers, registered patent agents, students and technical specialists includes some of the nation’s most respected practitioners of intellectual property law who tackle innovations in a wide range of industries. The firm’s practitioners hold more than 50 master’s degrees and more than 50 doctorate degrees in science or engineering and represent Fortune 500 companies, entrepreneurs, start-ups, inventors, venture capitalists and universities in an environment focused on customer service that is welcoming, inclusive and intellectually stimulating. Visit the practice online at

SOURCESterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox


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