American Chemical Society
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March 16, 2012 Meeting
- Public Affairs Meeting-


Mary Jo Boldingh Mary Jo Boldingh
Foley and Lardner, LLP
Xavier Pillai
Xavier Pillai
Leydig, Voit & Mayer, Ltd
Moderator:  Michael Koehler Michael Koehler

“America Invests Act: PL-112-29
Significant Changes in Patent Law for the First Time in 60 Years

Date:  March 16, 2011
Location:    Café La Cave
2777 Mannheim Road
Des Plaines, IL 60018

Cost:  $35.00 for members of ACS and their guests, $37.00 for non-members,
     $20 for students, retired, or unemployed

Dinner reservations are required and should be received in the Section Office via phone (847-391-9091), email (, or web by noon on Wednesday, March 14.   PLEASE HONOR YOUR RESERVATIONS.  The Section must pay for all food orders.  No-shows will be billed.  Seating will be available for those who wish to attend only the meeting.


5:30 - 6:30 PM · Job Club
5:30 - 6:30 PM · Social Hour:  Complimentary Hors D'oeuvres served butler style. Cash Bar
6:30 - 7:30 PM · Dinner
7:30 PM · Public Affairs Program

Topic: “America Invests Act” PL-112-29

Abstract: The “America Invests Act” which was signed into law by President Obama on September 16, 2011 made significant changes to the U.S. patenting system. This law made significant changes in the patent law for the first time in nearly 60 years. The Public Affairs Meeting will focus on the importance of this legislative action for the future of science and technology in this country and the world in the coming years.

Both of our speakers are patent attorneys and experienced chemists and will review those changes in the patent process that are of significant interest to scientists and inventors. Both Mary Jo and Xavier have extensive backgrounds in chemical practice, process and characterization, all of which are important to the patent process.

Dr. Michael G. Koehler, our chair-elect, will be our moderator for the program this evening.

Atty. Mary Jo Boldingh

Mary Jo Boldingh is special counsel with Foley & Lardner LLP. She is a member of the firm's IP Litigation and Chemical, Biotechnology & Pharmaceutical Practices.

Ms. Boldingh's practice focuses on intellectual property, including patent litigation, validity and infringement opinions, and patent prosecution. Her experience includes work in chemical technologies such as catalysis, metal oxide absorbents, polymers, biotech processes, and infant formula, and in other technologies such as telecommunications, Internet-based marketing systems, and handheld digital assistants. She has been involved in numerous prominent cases in a variety of industries and has a special interest in efficient dispute resolution.

Prior to graduation from law school, she worked as a laboratory chemist at the UOP Research Center in the automotive catalysis area and as a computational chemistry consultant at both G.D. Searle & Co. R&D and at AlliedSignal Engineered Materials Research Center, focusing on drug design and fuel properties, respectively.

As a recognition of her legal experience, Ms. Boldingh has been Peer Review Rated in Martindale-Hubbell's peer review rating system.

She received her A.B. in chemistry from Loyola University in 1980, her M.S. in chemistry from Northwestern University in 1985 and her J.D. with honors from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1991.

Ms. Boldingh is a member of the American Intellectual Property Law Association, the Federal Circuit Bar Association, the Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago (Board of Managers, 2010-2012), and the American Bar Association, and is a past member of the Richard Linn American Inn of Court. In addition, she was a long-time member of the board of directors of the Chicago-based social service agency Ada S. McKinley Community Services, Inc., and served on the board of trustees of the Science and Arts Academy, a school for gifted children in Des Plaines, Ill.

Ms. Boldingh is admitted to practice in Illinois and before the Northern District of Illinois, the Courts of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the Second Circuit, and the Eastern District of Wisconsin. She is also registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Atty. Xavier Pillai

Xavier Pillai received his Ph.D. in polymer science from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland Ohio in 1984. He joined the staff of AlliedSignal Co as a polymer chemist, where he conducted research as a polymer chemist. He received his legal training at Chicago-Kent College of Law, receiving his J.D. in 1994.

Dr. Pillai is currently active in patent prosecution and client counseling, with a particular emphasis in the chemical arts. Areas of particular interest include organic chemistry, polymer chemistry, process chemistry, pharmaceuticals including small molecules and macromolecules, vaccines, diagnostics, high polymers, lithography, membranes and filters for use in biomedical applications, ink jet printing ink compositions, marking compositions, and liquid crystal compositions. He directs patent procurement in the U.S., Europe, Canada, Japan, Australia and several other countries, providing opinions on patent infringement, patent validity, and patent challenges.

Prior to joining Leydig, Voit & Mayer, Ltd., Mr. Pillai worked as a research scientist at Allied Signal, Inc. in the area of polymer membranes for water desalination and gas separation applications. During his research for his Ph.D., he carried out synthesis and evaluations of polymers and copolymers containing oxazoline monomers and ethylene oxide monomers for electrical battery separator applications. He is the named inventor of seven U.S. patents and has ten publications on polymer synthesis and polymer membranes.

He is a member of and actively engaged in:

As a member of the American Chemical Society, he serves as a member of the Division of Chemistry and the Law, serves on the Executive Committee, and in 2011 was chair of the Division of Chemistry and the Law. He is an associate member of the Council Committee on Patents and Related Matters, and has been very active as a presenter and speaker before numerous groups having an interest in science and legal matters.

He is a member of the Illinois Bar (1994), the DC Bar (2000), and is registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He has obtained a significant number of patents and publications during his career as a practicing research chemist.

He is expert in the languages of Tamil and Hindi.

Map and Directions

Parking:   Go directly to the parking lot for self-parking.  Valet parking is also available.





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