Sharon R. Barner has been Vice President and General Counsel at Cummins Inc. since January 31, 2012. Ms. Barner has been an Independent Director at Patent Properties, Inc. (known as GlobalOptions Group, Inc.) since December 2013. She served as Deputy Director of The United States Patent & Trademark Office from 2009 to 2011. Ms. Barner served as Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property at The United States Patent & Trademark Office. She was a Partner and Member of Management Committee at Foley & Lardner LLP since 1996. She serves as Chairman of Intellectual Property Department with Foley & Lardner. She served as Chairman of the IP Litigation Practice Group, and she serves as a Trustee of La Rabida Children's Hospital. She also serves as a Director of Grateful Hand Foundation.
She has represented clients in a broad range of technologies from genetically engineered foods, to computers to satellites. She represents clients in patent, trademark, copyright and unfair competition disputes. In her 23 years of legal experience, she has represented the interests of multinational corporations, manufacturers, service companies, municipalities, and universities in strategic counseling and risk management.
Ms. Barner writes and lectures frequently on a variety of intellectual property topics including patent litigation, business counseling and risk management. She has authored numerous articles including Contending with Patents in Financial Services, The National Law Journal (January 2005); IP Protection is Critical to Combating Counterfeiting in a Global Marketplace (2003); China Outsourcing: A Technology-Based Strategy for Manufacture and Protection for the Domestic and Global Markets (Barner and Wegner, 2004); and Safeguarding Confidential and Trade Secret Information—Protecting the Company's Crown Jewels (American Corporate Counsel Association, April 1999).