Edward R. “Kaz” Kazenske is the Senior Director of Patent Prosecution Strategy and Relations in Microsoft’s Intellectual Property & Licensing Group. He joined Microsoft in 2005 and leads the first Microsoft patent team to locate in the Washington, D.C. area. His key focus is to effectively obtain patent protection for Microsoft’s innovations. Kaz is responsible for outreach and partnership efforts with patent offices around the world, and provides guidance and strategy on a broad array of patent policy issues.
In joining Microsoft, Mr. Kazenske brought more than 33 years of intellectual property rights expertise and 18 years of executive leadership experience at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). From 1999 to 2005, he was the Deputy Commissioner for Patents responsible for all Patent budget and financial management, strategic operational direction, and business information technology utilization. Before his appointment as the Deputy Commissioner, he served as the Associate Commissioner and Chief Financial Officer of the USPTO (1997-1999), and the Deputy Associate Commissioner of Patent Operations (1994-1997) responsible for all activities relating to the processing and examination of U.S. and international patent applications. He has also served as the Chief of Staff to the Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Commissioner of Patents and Trademarks, and prior to his appointment to the Senior Executive Service of the United States in 1989, served as a Supervisory Patent Examiner (1982-1988) and a Patent Examiner (1972-1982).
Mr. Kazenske, in addition to his USPTO responsibilities, has been involved in a variety of National-level intellectual property rights issues, including the Intellectual Property Working Group of the President’s Domestic Policy Council, the Secretary of Commerce Advisory Commission on Patent Law Reform, and the Information Infrastructure Task Force Working Group on Intellectual Property Rights. Over his career, Mr. Kazenske has received numerous awards including the Presidential Rank Award from President Bush in 2001. A native of Illinois, Mr. Kazenske holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering from the University of Illinois (1971) and is a graduate of the Senior Managers Program from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (1996).