Amy Salmela

Shareholder - Patent Attorney

Patent Law

612.252.1538 |

    Amy Salmela is a Shareholder with Patterson Thuente IP. Amy’s practice focuses primarily on patent prosecution related to electrical engineering and electronics, including medical devices and informatics, computer hardware and software, telecommunications, and retail logistics and analytics technologies.

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    Her practice includes strategic IP portfolio growth and management for a range of clients, from start-ups to large, multinational corporations, as well as investment and acquisition IP due diligence, opinion work and litigation support. In recent years Amy has been involved with expert reports for litigation and other disputes related to PCT, Paris Convention, and other issues involving international law and treaties.

    Amy has a significant client base in Europe and is proficient in international portfolio development. Clients consider Amy a well-balanced legal resource with deep technical knowledge and the ability to assimilate complicated issues, coupled with strong business acumen and IP prosecution prowess.

    In addition to her private practice experience with the firm, Amy worked in-house for a major European semiconductor company. This experience has given her a broad perspective from which to advise clients regarding strategic IP portfolio management in a global economy, as well as assist with the development of offensive and defensive IP strategies to complement business goals. In her in-house role, Amy was also responsible for educating European and German patent attorneys on US IP law, training R&D personnel and management on global IP strategy and facilitating invention generation workshops. Prior to becoming an attorney, Amy was an electrical engineer, working for a printed circuit board subcontract manufacturer, U.S. Steel Corporation and Northern States Power Company.

    Amy was instrumental in developing the first pro bono patent law program in the US—the LegalCORPS Inventor Assistance Program (IAP)—which now serves as a model for patent pro bono programs across the country. She serves on the organization’s steering committee and is also a member of the AIA Pro Bono Advisory Council. Amy co-authored Patent Law Pro Bono: A Best Practices Guide, a comprehensive guidebook that serves as the blueprint for how to launch a patent pro bono program from concept through launch.

    Amy is also involved in the business community, serving as an IP Advisor for AUM Cardiovascular and as a mentor for medtech start-ups through gener8tor, a concierge start-up accelerator, and its gBETA MedTech program. She has also served as an adjunct professor for the Mitchell Hamline School of Law intellectual property law clinic.

    • Software and control systems
    • Tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS)
    • Medical infusion pumps
    • Ultrasonic wound debridement and healing technologies
    • Optical cable installation, transmission and error detection
    • Semiconductor micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS)
    • Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) systems
    • Secure data encryption and decryption systems and methods
    • Sonic sensors
    • Synchronized clocking systems
    • Photo cells for ultraviolet sensors
    • Secure QR code encoding and data management systems
    • Non-invasive coronary artery disease detection systems and methods
    • Magnetoresistive sensors, including GMR, TMR and AMR
    • Automotive radar systems
    • Hall-effect sensors, including vertical Hall devices
    • Dynamic web searching and presentation system
    • Composite aircraft components and assemblies
    • Printed electrical circuits and circuit components
    • Automotive occupant detection systems and methods
    • Aircraft landing gear control systems
    • Telecommunications infrastructure
    • Internet-based sales and consumer product customization systems
    • Robot task definition, control and evaluation
    • Remote vehicle dispatch and monitoring
    Milwaukee School of Engineering, B.S., Electrical Engineering, 2000, with honors
    University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., 2003, Minnesota Law Review
    Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal Women in Business Award, 2018
    The Business Journals, Influencers – Law, 2018
    Minnesota Business Leaders in Health Care Awards finalist, 2014
    Minnesota Super Lawyers® Rising Stars, 2012 – 2013 Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal
    Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal, 40 Under Forty Award, 2012
    Minnesota Lawyer, Up & Coming Attorneys, 2012
    North Star Lawyer, 2013 – 2018


    German (conversant)

    • “Getting From Idea to IP: Protecting Innovation,” Kauffman FastTrac TechVenture IP webinar, November 7, 2018
    • “Making Smart Patent Application Filing Decisions,” University of Minnesota Medical Device Innovation Boot Camp,” Minneapolis, MN, October 2010 – 2017
    • “IP Hot Topics, NGO Management 101,” Equal Justice Conference, Austin, TX, May 2015
    • “Section 101 in View of Alice v. CLS Bank,” internal training at British Telecommunications, April 2015
    • LegalCORPS IAP Volunteer Attorney Training, St. Paul, MN April 2015
    • “Advancing Women in IP Practice,” moderator, William Mitchell College of Law, April 2015
    • “IP Business Basics,” Kauffman FastTrac TechVenture IP presentation, University of Minnesota – Rochester, April 2013, 2015, 2016
    • “The LegalCORPS Inventor Assistance Program,” MN-CLE webinar, March 2015
    • Young Professionals Leadership Panel, 2015 Leadership Foundations Program, University of Minnesota Law School, January 2015
    • “Getting from Idea to IP: Why, How and When to Patent,” International Medical Devices Conference, Chicago, IL, September 2012 – 2014
    • “Patents & the Global Marketplace,” U.S. Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium, Washington, D.C., March 2011
    • “Recent Developments in U.S. IP Law,” Geyer Fehner & Partners and Ashurst internal training, Munich, Germany, April 2010
    American Bar Association, IPL Section Pro Bono Committee, Chair
    Minnesota Women Lawyers, Partner Leadership Council
    Minnesota State Bar Association
    LifeScience Alley Women in the Life Sciences Leadership Roundtables (2010, 2012)
    Supreme Court of Minnesota
    U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota
    U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
    • America Invents Act (AIA) Pro Bono Advisory Council
    • Board Member, Highland District Council
    • Court-appointed trustee assisting  MN Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility with intellectual property related client files

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