2018-2019 President’s Report

President’s Report, 2018-2019

Dave Zwicky, West Lafayette, IN

Probably the biggest event of this year was the retirement of Chris Kitchens, Director of the Public Search Services Division and former head of the PTRC Program, from the USPTO on May 25th.  Chris has been an important part of this organization for a long time and, even though her presence continues to be felt, will be much missed.

In other news, thanks to a lot of dedicated work from Suzanne Reinman (Chair of Publications Committee, Stillwater), David Irvin (Editor-in-Chief, Las Cruces), and Jan Comfort (Clemson), we have relaunched the Journal of the Patent & Trademark Resource Center Association through the Clemson University TigerPrints service (https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/jptrca/).  This move will allow give us a stable home for our content and provide persistent identifiers and discoverability, giving our articles a wider reach.  Our content is already being indexed by Google Scholar!

It goes almost without saying that we rely extensively on the support and hard work of the PTRC program office as they plan and execute the seminar, and this year, in spite of vacant positions and general turmoil (doing quite a bit more with quite a bit less), they’ve done excellent work.  This year’s agenda looks fantastic, with the usual high-quality patent and trademark sessions we’ve come to expect and a few fun twists on the formula.

As always, I look forward to seeing all of you at our array of social and networking events during the seminar.  The schedule this year looks like…

·         Early Bird Dinner, 6:30PM on Sunday, April 7th at Hard Times Café in Alexandria.  We’ll be meeting at the hotel (the Residence Inn by Marriott on Duke Street) around 6PM, if you’d like to walk over together.

·         Meet & Greet, 5:00PM on Monday, April 8th in the Madison building concourse-level atrium (next to our seminar rooms).  We’ve invited a host of people from the USPTO, and this is a fantastic opportunity to talk with them and get their perspective on the patent and trademark systems.  And, of course, there will be hors d’oeurves and the chance to catch up with each other.

·         Group dinners, after seminar on Tuesday, April 9th.  This year, rather than do a formal no-host dinner for the entire group, we’ve decided to try something different.   We’re going to help representatives form up into small groups and pick their own restaurants.  That way, we still get to socialize and chat with our colleagues, but it’s less logistical stress on everyone involved.

·         Sing-Along, 7:00PM-ish on Wednesday, April 10th in the hotel.  There will be music, fellowship, and just general good times.

·         PTRCA Roundtables, 1PM on Thursday, April 11th in the seminar rooms.  We’re planning on having four roundtables on various topics related to best practices for patent and trademark librarians, presented by fellow librarians.  This is always a great opportunity to go deeper on how our patent and trademark outreach and teaching activities actually work, and we hope you’ll stick around to participate.

With my term coming to a close, I would like to thank the executive committee for all of their work this year.  This year, that committee included Lisha Li (Past President, Atlanta), Jared Hoppenfeld (Vice President, College Station), Jim Miller (Treasurer, College Park), John Schlipp (Secretary, Highland Heights), Christine Dienes (Davenport), Siu Min Yu (Houston), Leena Lalwani (Ann Arbor), Marian Armour-Gemmen (Morgantown), Andrew Maines (Buffalo), Suzanne Reinman (Stillwater), and Paulina Borrego (Amherst).  And, of course, everyone who served on a committee, attended a conference, or otherwise contributed your time and effort to our organization. 

Beyond the officers and executive committee, I would encourage everyone to volunteer for a PTRCA committee.  Compared to some other professional organizations, it’s relatively low impact, but still highly rewarding.  As a long-time member of other, larger organizations in the library world, I’ve always found this kind of small, tightly-knit, and highly-focused group to be a breath of fresh air.  If that sounds valuable to you, I strongly encourage you to join PTRCA or renew your membership. And if you have any question about the PTRCA, please do not hesitate to ask myself or any other member. We will have a table during registration and throughout the week.

It has been a pleasure to serve as the PTRCA’s President this last year.  Thank you