A former clerk at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Jessamyn Berniker’s practice focuses on patent litigation and licensing disputes, although she has significant litigation experience in criminal, copyright, antitrust, legal malpractice, and general civil matters as well. Ms. Berniker has handled patent litigation and licensing dispute matters in a wide variety of industries, including the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, electronic, digital media, and medical device industries.
Ms. Berniker has argued before the Federal Circuit and has participated in eight trials, including several patent matters.
As part of her pharmaceutical practice, Ms. Berniker has served as counsel to companies such as Pfizer, Alcon (now part of Novartis), Takeda, and Bayer. Recently, Ms. Berniker second-chaired her second patent trial in the District of Delaware, a Hatch-Waxman matter on behalf of Pfizer in connection with the anti-cancer agent, Sutent®. She also successfully argued claim construction on behalf of Alcon in the Southern District of Indiana.
As part of her biotechnology practice, Ms. Berniker has served as counsel to companies such as MedImmune, Genentech and ACell. She recently represented MedImmune in a dispute against PDL BioPharma in which MedImmune won summary judgment invalidating a key biotechnology patent held by PDL and further obtained a $92.5 million settlement from PDL. She helped Genentech obtain the complete dismissal of a class action matter asserting RICO and California state law unfair competition claims, a victory that was affirmed by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Managing Intellectual Property recognized Ms. Berniker as one of the “Top 250 Women in IP” in 2013 and 2014, and as an “IP Star” from 2013 to 2015. LMG Life Sciences recognized Ms. Berniker as a “Life Science Star” in the area of patent litigation from 2012 to 2015.
Ms. Berniker regularly serves on the faculty of the ALI course Trial of a Patent Case.
Born in Los Angeles and raised in Washington State, Ms. Berniker received her B.S. in chemistry, magna cum laude, from Pacific Lutheran University in 1998, and her J.D., cum laude, from Harvard Law School. During college and prior to law school she spent several months conducting organic chemistry research at Argonne National Laboratory just outside of Chicago. After law school, Ms. Berniker was a law clerk to Judge Arthur J. Gajarsa of the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. She joined Williams & Connolly LLP in 2002. Ms. Berniker is proficient in French.
Ms. Berniker serves on the board of Jitegemee, Inc., a non-profit that provides support and training for street children in Machakos, Kenya.
Ms. Berniker is a long-time member of the 18th Street Singers, a Washington-based choir that performs regularly at the Kennedy Center.