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Commerce’s USPTO Concludes Successful Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium


The Commerce Department’s U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) hosted the final installment of the 2021 Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium (WES) today and heard from a diverse panel of successful women innovators who shared their stories of entrepreneurship and the challenges they faced along the way.

WES, an annual event launched in 2011, has proven to be one of the USPTO’s most popular programs to date. Over 6,000 attendees tuned in this year to hear lessons learned, helpful tips, and resources for women entrepreneurs to protect the various forms of intellectual property (IP) which might be present in their businesses - namely patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets.  

Today’s panel of three women described how they got to where they are, and what they recommend for all the aspiring young women in our country. They also addressed the vital role of intellectual property (IP) protection, how to identify a market segment for growth, and discussed best practices and successful habits in today’s changing business climate.

Panelists included Janeya Griffin, Founder and CEO, The Commercializer; Rea Huntley, Founder and CEO, Lavii INC; and Sarah Gibson Tuttle, Founder and CEO, Oliver and June. Dr. Lisa Cook, Professor at Michigan State University, and Edison Research Fellow at the USPTO, moderated the panel. Dr. Cook is part of USPTO’s Office of the Chief Economist.

Throughout the month of March, the WES Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium (WES) offered engaging, expert panels featuring successful women entrepreneurs, notable inventors, and subject matter experts from the USPTO, the International Trade Administration and the Small Business Administration.

In addition, the discussions focused on important topics such as expanding opportunities for women and underrepresented groups in innovation, increasing educational opportunities for girls and women in invention and STEM, and highlighting the role women entrepreneurs play in innovation and economic growth.

View the playlist of all WES sessions on the USPTO’s YouTube page and browse all upcoming USPTO events.

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