"Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises."Demosthenes, Athenian orator and statesman (384-322 B.C.)
Donna T. Ward, Ph.D., J.D. Patent Attorney
Dr. Ward has over 20 years of law firm and in-house counsel experience. She has legal and technical expertise representing both established and emerging commercial organizations in biotechnology areas that include protein and nucleic acid chemistry, drug delivery systems and devices. In addition, Dr. Ward has represented clients in the alternative energy (green tech) fields, the mechanical arts, and pharmaceuticals.
From leading-edge biotech companies founded on Nobel prize winning science to startups focusing on environment-saving technologies, Dr. Ward specializes in, and has managed the creation, growth and competitive positioning of intellectual property portfolios covering some of the most innovative and complex areas of scientific discovery.
B.S. BIOLOGY, with honors-1986
Cumberland University-Lebanon, TN
University of Kentucky-College of Medicine-Lexington, KY
Spectroscopic Studies of Canine Osteocalcin
Post-Doctoral Fellow-CHEMISTRY- 1996-1997
Vanderbilt University-Nashville, TN
Development of MALDI-TOF MS Methods for DNA adducts
J.D. cum laude, 2006
Thomas Jefferson School of Law-San Diego, CA
She is a member of the state bar of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and is registered to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
Anna Stanford, J.D. Patent Attorney
Ms. Stanford’s practice focuses on the preparation and prosecution of biotechnology patent applications in a range of areas, including gene therapeutics, antibodies, vaccines, and fusion peptides. Ms. Stanford has drafted and prosecuted U.S. and international patent applications. She has experience assisting a wide variety of clients, ranging from start-up companies with emerging biotechnologies to large academic research institutions, in obtaining patent protection and maximizing patent term. She also performs patent landscape reviews and due diligence work for clients to evaluate licensing opportunities.
M.S. BIOLOGY - 2013
Tufts University, Medford, MA
J.D. – 2012
University of New Hampshire School of Law (formerly Franklin Pierce Law Center), Concord, NH
B.S. MOLECULAR BIOLOGY, Minor in Business Administration - 2009
Auburn University, Auburn, AL
Anni Siitonen, Ph.D. Patent Agent
Dr. Anni Siitonen is a Patent Agent at the firm and has expertise in chemistry, physics and material science. Anni handles drafting of patent applications, prosecution before the USPTO, and performs due diligence to understand freedom-to-operate issues and technology landscapes for new business opportunities. Anni has worked with clients from the fields of nanotechnology, semiconductors, antibody and small molecule gene therapies and construction devices. Anni has research and development experience in both industry and academia working with advanced materials, sensors and devices. Her Ph.D. thesis was involved with optical properties of single-walled carbon nanotubes.
University of Jyväskylä, Finland
Ph.D. Physical Chemistry
University of Jyväskylä, Finland
Cathy Chen, Ph.D. Technical Specialist
Dr. Chen is a technical specialist who joined the firm in June 2016. Cathy has technical expertise in biochemistry, molecular biology, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical sciences. She received her Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Johns Hopkins University. Her doctoral research in the laboratory of Dr. Scott Bailey focused on the biochemical and structural characterization of CRISPR/Cas systems. Prior to graduate school, she attended Fudan University in China where she received her B.S. in Biotechnology.
B.S. Biotechnology, first class honors- 2010
Fudan University - China
Ph.D. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology - 2015
Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health – Baltimore, MD
Christopher Sullivan, Ph.D. Patent Agent
Dr. Sullivan joined the firm of DTWard, PC in 2012 as a Technical Specialist, becoming a Patent Agent later that year. He is currently a J.D. Candidate at University of New Hampshire School of Law in Concord, New Hampshire. Dr. Sullivan holds a Ph.D. in Biochemistry with over ten years of experience in biomedical research in the fields of cardiovascular biology and neurodegenerative disease biology. Before joining the firm, he worked as a Health Science Specialist at the Bedford Department of Veteran’s Affairs Medical Center where he was awarded the VISN1 Career Development Award to conduct research in the field of neurodegenerative disease. Prior to his work at the VA, Dr. Sullivan was a Laboratory Technician, PhD Candidate, and Postdoctoral Fellow at Boston University School of Medicine in the department of Biochemistry, where he was awarded his PhD in 2008.
J.D. Candidate-Expected graduation in 2017
University of New Hampshire School of Law, Concord, NH
Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA
Studied in the laboratory of Dr. Barbara Schreiber. Examined transcriptional control of secretory phospholipase A2 and interleukin 1β by serum amyloid A and related metabolic activity.
University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH
He is a member of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
Debi Kellom Senior Patent Paralegal
Debi has been a patent paralegal for 13 years, with over 25 years in the legal field. Her expertise is in the area of foreign patent prosecution -- having dealt effectively with filing patent applications and assisting in navigating patent prosecution in all countries throughout the world.
In addition to her career in the legal field, Debi attended Katharine Gibbs School in Boston, Massachusetts and has earned a Patent Paralegal Certificate through IP Legal Education.
Emily Smith Office Manager
Emily Smith joined D.T. Ward in 2013 as the Administrative Assistant to Donna Ward and was promoted to the position of Office Manager. She brings more than a decade of office management experience to the role including seven years as an operations manager in the biotech industry. As Office Manager, she is responsible for operational and administrative functions of the firm. Emily is a graduate of Eastern Nazarene College where she earned a degree in Business Management. She is currently completing her certification as a Certified Law Practice Manager.
B.A., Business Management
Eastern Nazarene College, Quincy, MA
Emily is a Notary Public for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and a member of the Association of Legal Administrators.
Heng Zhu, M.S. Patent Agent
Heng Zhu is a patent agent at the firm. Ms. Zhu received her Master of Science degree in organic chemistry from Purdue University in May 2008. In graduate school, she conducted research on functional gold nano materials, in particular polyethylene glycol-coated gold surfaces as protein-resistant materials. Prior to joining DT Ward, P.C., Ms. Zhu worked as a Patent Analyst, prosecuting patent applications in the areas of polymers and paints, fuel cells, and medical devices. She also worked as a Patent Classifier contractor for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office classifying patents and pre-grant publications in the polypeptide/protein, fuel cell, and chemical reactor areas. Ms. Zhu is fluent in mandarin Chinese.
B.S. Chemistry - 2004
Nanjing University - China
M.S. Organic Chemistry – 2008
Purdue University - West Lafayette, IN
Jennifer Bryan, J.D., LL.M-IP Patent Attorney
Jennifer Bryan has been part of the team at DT Ward PC since 2011. Jen works with clients in a broad range of areas to design and execute IP strategies that would support the clients’ objectives through patent drafting and prosecution, patentability, freedom to operate analysis, due diligence, portfolio expansion and development, portfolio management, and trademark protection. Jen focuses primarily in the areas of nucleic acid based therapy, gene therapy, bioinformatics and immuno-oncology therapies.
Jen received her undergraduate degree at the University of Connecticut, graduating with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering. While at UCONN, Mrs. Bryan worked with the United States Army Corps of Engineers Cold Regions Research and Development Laboratory (CRREL) researching the dissolution of explosive and propellant residues on military training ranges. She received her J.D. and LL.M.-IP from the University of New Hampshire School of Law (formerly Franklin Pierce Law Center).
University of New Hampshire School of Law, Concord, NH
J.D., Juris Doctor
LL.M.-IP, Master of Laws- Intellectual Property
University College Cork, Cork, Ireland
International Law Studies, Summer Program
University of Connecticut
B.S., Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering
She is a member of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
Jessica Charland Patent Paralegal
Jessica is a graduate of Merrimack College and currently resides in Groton, MA. She has over ten years of experience in law, with a primary focus in intellectual property. She’s well versed in all aspects of trademark and patent prosecution. In her free time, Jessica enjoys spending time on the lake and time with her family.
B.A. French – 2004
Merrimack College, North Andover, MA
Kathy Kopeikina, Ph.D. Technical Specialist
Kathy has been a technical specialist at DT Ward, PC since July 2015. A neuroscientist and New Englander at heart, Kathy started out by pursuing a BA in Neuroscience at Bates College. Afterwards, seemingly convinced that she didn't want to see neurons ever again, she spent two years in the Biochemistry Department at Boston University working with a mouse model of induced heart disease. Through a series of fortuitous and coincidental events Kathy then joined a combined MS/PhD program in Biomedical Forensics then Anatomy & Neurobiology, respectively, also at BU. A training grant brought her to the lab of Dr. Brad Hyman at MGH where she stayed for the duration of her PhD, studying the role of tau in Alzheimer Disease, mostly in mouse models, but using some super cool, cutting-edge techniques. Alongside her benchwork and other coursework, Kathy enjoyed the opportunity to take Medical Gross Anatomy, Neurosciences and Histology, then use the knowledge to teach this subject matter to incoming medical and dental students. After completing her PhD Kathy headed to Northwestern University in Chicago for a short post-doc in the lab of Dr. Peter Penzes, studying molecular mechanisms in dendritic spines in the context of psychiatric diseases. Some more cutting- edge techniques and thousands of beautiful images of neurons later, Kathy has returned to New England and is thrilled to call DT Ward, PC her new home.
B.A. Neuroscience- 2004
Bates College - Lewiston, ME
M.S. Biomedical Forensics – 2007
Boston University School of Medicine – Boston, MA
Ph.D. Anatomy and Neurobiology - 2013
Boston University School of Medicine – Boston, MA
Kristin Corbett Docketing Manager
Kristin Corbett joined DT Ward PC in 2011 and is the firm’s Docketing Manager and Senior Paralegal. Kristin has over 9 years of experience in patent prosecution with a high level of knowledge and understanding of US and foreign patent law and prosecution. Kristin’s work concentrates on all aspects of US and foreign patent prosecution, the payment of annuity and maintenance fees and she is responsible for maintaining the firm’s CPi patent docketing systems. Prior to joining DT Ward, PC, Kristin worked as a paralegal and secretary for two law firms specializing in US and foreign patent prosecution. Kristin received a Bachelor of Science degree from Western New England College and a Paralegal Certificate from Boston University.
Boston University, Boston, MA, Paralegal Certificate
Western New England College, Springfield, MA, B.S., Criminal Justice
Lingyun Jia, Ph.D. Patent Agent
Lingyun Jia is a registered patent agent who focuses on patent prosecution in the areas of biotechnology and medical science. She assists client in managing patent portfolios and developing their IP strategies. Her experience includes due diligence searches, opinions on freedom-to- operation, and drafting and prosecuting patent applications for a number of technologies, including detection devices, diagnostic assays, immune-oncology, genetic engineering, nucleic acids and antibodies. Her postdoctoral research at Children’s Hospital Boston included studying cranial motor neuron degeneration and intracellular transportation.
B.S. Biology, high honors - 1996
Wuhan University – Wuhan, China
M.S. Biochemistry – 1999
Shanghai Institute of Physiology - Shanghai, China
Ph.D. Molecular Genetics - 2006
Albert Einstein College of Medicine-New York, NY
Sonya Domingo Patent Paralegal
Sonya joined DT Ward, PC in 2015 as a Patent Paralegal. Sonya has over 19 years of experience in patent prosecution and is well versed in the life cycle of a patent application. She assists with all stages of the patent prosecution process for U.S., International Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), and foreign patent applications, including preparing and filing documents and interacting with domestic and foreign associates. In addition, she provides support by responding to client and patent office correspondence, reporting patent office documents to clients in a timely manner, and maintaining client files.
Before joining DT Ward, PC, Sonya worked as an in-house patent paralegal for the USDA, Agricultural Research Service.
Sonya is a California Notary Public and received her paralegal certificate from the USDA Graduate School.
Vijaya Balakrishnan, Ph.D. Technical Specialist
Dr. Vijaya Balakrishnan is a Technical Specialist at DT Ward, PC. Previously, Dr. Balakrishnan was a Postdoctoral Associate at the University of Rochester, School of Medicine and Dentistry, where she identified proteins that regulate lysosome function in specifically in cancer and studied the efficacy of lysosome-targeted therapeutic strategies in pancreatic cancer.
Dr. Balakrishnan earned her B.S. degree in Zoology from the University of Madras, India. She earned her doctorate in Genetics, Genomics and Development from the University of Rochester in the laboratory of Dr. Hartmut Land. There, her work concentrated on the identification of molecular vulnerabilities in cancer, downstream of oncogenic mutations using genomic approaches, transgenic mouse models and confocal microscopy.
B.S. Zoology – 2004 University of Madras – India
M.S. Human Genetics - 2006 Sri Ramachandra University – Chennai, India
Ph.D. Genetics, Genomics and Development - 2015 University of Rochester – Rochester, NY
Alissa Kamens Technical Specialist
Dr. Kamens became a technical specialist at DT Ward, PC in October of 2017. Before joining the team, Dr. Kamens was a graduate student in the laboratory of Prof. Joshua Kritzer at Tufts University, where she studied peptide chemistry and chemical biology. Her research focused on the synthesis and use of cyclic peptides to drug “undruggable” protein-protein interactions. Her work also examined the importance of conformational constraints in the development of inhibitors of vesicle trafficking.
As an undergraduate, Dr. Kamens attended the University of Rochester, where she worked in the laboratory of Prof. Bradley Nilsson. Her undergraduate research in the field of amyloidogenic peptides introduced her to her interest in chemical biology and the use of peptides as a tool to examine biological processes.
B.S. Chemistry – 2010
University of Rochester – Rochester, NY
Ph.D. Chemistry – 2017
Tufts University – Medford, MA
Laurie Daley Administrative Assistant
Laurie Daley joined D.T. Ward in 2017 as an Administrative Assistant. She has over ten years’ experience in office management. In addition, she has a varied background in pharmacy, human services, and catering and event planning. As an Administrative Assistant, Laurie will be responsible for supporting the firm with its operational and administrative functions. Laurie is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts where she earned a degree in Psychology.
University of Massachusetts, Lowell, MA