Janet Gongola, the patent reform coordinator at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in Alexandria, Va., will take part in a panel discussion during the second day of the Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference in Middleton. 


Gongola, who manages all aspects of the patent office’s implementation of the America Invents Act, will join other intellectual property experts for a 10:15 a.m., Wednesday, June 5 panel discussion titled “Patent reform: What the new rules mean to you and your IP.” 


She will also be available through same-day signup for one-on-one meetings with conference registrants following the panel discussion, which will take place at the Marriott West in Middleton.  To register, visit http://www.witrepsconference.com/.


Signed into law in September 2011, the America Invents Act represents the most significant change to the U.S. patent system since 1952. The act switches the patent system from a “first to invent” to a “first inventor to file” system, among other significant changes. Its central provisions went into effect March 16, 2013. 


Gongola is also the associate commissioner for patent examination policy at the agency. She was previously an associate solicitor in the Office of the Solicitor with the patent office. Gongola has worked as a patent attorney, patent agent and research chemist at Eli Lilly & Co. 


Other announced highlights of the conference include: 


·         Launch, grow and succeed tracks tailored to the needs of entrepreneurs; 


·         The Diligent Dozen: Finalists in the Governor’s Business Plan Contest square off; 


·         Wisconsin Innovation Showcase, which will highlight some of the state’s best and boldest companies and their innovative products; 


·         Nationally known speakers such as Jason Lucash of OrigAudio and “Shark Tank” fame; 


·         “The California Badgers,” a plenary panel featuring UW-Madison graduates who made their mark as entrepreneurs and investors in California’s Silicon Valley; 


·         Plenty of chances to network over food and refreshments! 


The Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference is produced by the Tech Council, the independent, non-profit science and technology advisers to the governor and the Legislature. It serves as a catalyst for the growth of Wisconsin’s tech-based and entrepreneurial economy. 


Register or learn more by visiting http://www.witrepsconference.com/. To learn more about the host city and what it has to offer, go to http://www.visitmiddleton.com/.