In a deeply inspiring keynote for Patent Pathways, Margo A. Bagley, Vice Dean and Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law, shared her remarkable journey in patent law, from her humble beginnings to her current successes. Her story is a testament to the transformative power of determination, mentorship, and innovation in navigating the complexities of the patent field.
Margo Bagley’s early interest in engineering, spurred by a presentation on careers in engineering during her high school years in Huntsville, Alabama, set the stage for her exceptional journey. Despite facing significant challenges upon transferring to the University of Wisconsin to complete her chemical engineering degree, Bagley’s perseverance, fueled by encouragement from a professor, propelled her forward. Her professional journey began at Procter & Gamble, where she was recognized as Rookie of the Year in food product development and co-invented a patent on reduced-fat peanut butter, marking her first foray into the world of patents.
Bagley’s curiosity about patents grew during her tenure at Procter & Gamble, leading her to explore a career in patent law. After conducting thorough research, including cold-calling patent attorneys to understand the profession better, she decided to pivot her career towards law. Enrolling at Emory Law School, she excelled academically, graduating third in her class, which paved the way for her successful practice as a patent attorney at prominent law firms.
Despite her success in practice, Bagley’s passion for teaching and mentoring led her to academia, where she has made significant contributions to patent law education and research. Her work focuses on international patent law, comparative patent law, and increasing diversity in the innovation ecosystem. She currently serves as a technical adviser to the African Union and the World Intellectual Property Organization, highlighting her expertise and commitment to advancing the field of patent law on a global scale.
Bagley’s advice to individuals entering the patent field is profound and multifaceted. She emphasizes the importance of being coachable, proactive in honing writing skills, making a good first impression, and appreciating the opportunities presented. Her journey underscores the value of resilience, mentorship, and continuous learning in achieving professional success and contributing to the broader legal and innovation communities.
Margo A. Bagley’s keynote not only shares her personal and professional achievements but also serves as a source of inspiration and guidance for those aspiring to make their mark in the patent law field. Her dedication to mentorship, diversity, and innovation is a beacon for current and future generations in the patent community.
Watch her address our Opening Session below:
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