November 18, 2019
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USPTO on Military Makeover: Operation Career

Here at the United States Patent and
Trademark Office, the mission is to protect intellectual property for the
United States and for the world. Think of being surrounded by innovation –
the latest inventions. They come through our doors. Trademarks are the most famous
brands in the world, here to be protected. Patents and trademarks provide critical
protection of intellectual property, so that innovators and businesses can then
commercialize the products and services, and generate economic advantage. If you
look around you today you will see thousands and thousands of patents and
trademarks that you interact with every second and you don’t even realize. In 2012, the USPTO initiated their
veteran hiring program to answer the president’s call to make sure that
veterans leaving the service had a route to take in the civilian government.
We’d like to say that our veterans here at the PTO continue to serve. The work
that they are doing here is incredibly important to our nation. So our veterans
really just continue their service. Once they’re out of uniform they come right
here. Our veterans have a lot of responsibility. They’re exposed to a lot
of great leadership. They themselves become great leaders. Those
characteristics translate very well into a civilian job setting, whether it’s in
the private sector or the public sector. Now we have hiring managers coming to us
saying, “I need a veteran for this position.” Since 2012 the USPTO has hired
over 800 military veterans. The army was looking for linguists, people in medical
background, people with engineering background, that would help the military
meet its needs all around the world. Even though I have such an international
background, I’d grown up in different parts of the world, the military really
expanded that skill. So because I was in a civil affairs unit, one of the main
skills that I have to learn was actually how to deal with people from very
different backgrounds. When I transitioned from the Army to the USPTO,
the experience was the first where I would actually grow roots in the city. We
live in Arlington and we just loved the DC area. It’s been the first place that
I’ve grown roots and the USPTO is smooth transition from the army really helped
me do that. I joined the United States Air Force in 1990. I was enlisted
initially and I worked tactical communications. I did that for a little
under seven years and it was there that I met my husband.
I grew up in the Air Force first, it was my first job, and within the Air Force,
there’s just a sense of camaraderie, fellowship, and just, really really good
people. That was a challenge for me – the transition from being a military member
to civilian life wasn’t easy for for me. Like veterans Raj and Tyeshia, the
USPTO looks to hire dedicated military shaped leaders from all walks of life.
We’ve also had great success working with some of the programs sponsored by
DoD and the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Wounded Warrior Program, and
Operation Warfighter. We also hire a number of veterans with disabilities and
veterans who are being medically released from the service. A lot of
the jobs here at the PTO are very very friendly environments for people who are
dealing with disabilities and service related disabilities. We’ve hired
approximately 800 veterans since 2012. When we started, veterans weren’t on
anyone’s top of mind when it came to hiring. Within a very short period of
time, thanks to the veterans that we had already, that were already here at the
PTO, and thanks to the veterans that we brought aboard, those mindsets changed. Coming to the US Patent and Trademark
Office was a blessing because I found that same sense of camaraderie among my
peers and even among the leadership. Leadership is very accessible and
nurturing and supportive. The transition was very very smooth. A lot of support
from within the military community here. Very deep understanding from the people
who’ve not served in the military about your experiences just gained from
working with other veterans in the past and also from being actively trying to
learn from you about your experiences in the military. A lot of organizations
talked about taking care of people but it’s institutionalized at the U.S.
Patent and Trademark Office. There are real programs, real people, real resources
available for us to use. The Patent and Trademark Office offers unlimited career
advancement opportunities for our veterans. Whether it’s examining patents,
registering trademarks, serving in the information technology teams, or the
human resource teams – this is a great place to be. We would love to have you
join us. What differentiates the USPTO from a lot of other places that are
probably good places to work in, is the unparalleled work/life balance, the
ability to pursue your educational goals; it’s an agency that really gives you a
lot of responsibility very early on and gives you the opportunity to grow at
your own pace. The USPTO really lets you be you. It lets you do what you have
always wanted to do and pursue your dreams. The best opportunity I had
career-wise was joining the US Patent and Trademark Office. If you’re a vet out
there and you’re looking to work for an organization that aligns with your core
beliefs, that you can build on what you’ve experienced all over the world,
the US Patent and Trademark Office is the place for you. For more information
on patents and trademarks or potential employment opportunities, please visit
their website at

Tony wyaad