Many administrations regard the USPTO as a political backwater and the directorship as a holding pen for less-than-ideal candidates.

Here’s the shocker:

The Administration has appointed a qualified person to head the USPTO.  His name is Andrei Iancu and he is currently the managing partner of a Los Angeles law firm.  He’s a degreed engineer and registered patent attorney.  Mr. Iancu spends most of his time doing patent litigation, representing both plaintiffs and defendants.  Over the years he’s authored several articles on patent-related topics.

Mr. Ianacu also is an immigrant, from Romania.  He came to the U.S. with his family as a youth.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved his nomination by unanimous consent.  All that remains is approval by the Senate.

Mr. Ianacu’s background has some in the patent blogosphere fantasizing about all the wonderful changes that he will make, well, yesterday.   I’ll throw in my 2¢ – every USPTO director must work within the confines of the chaotic, contradictory decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court.  Perhaps Mr. Ianacu can help the Court reach consistent, sensible decisions that make the patent system stronger, more predictable, and that will create value for innovators.  … Sigh… One can always dream.

— Robert Yarbrough, Esq.