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Overview

John's focus is primarily on complex litigation matters that include patents. John has extensive experience in litigation and dispute resolution in all areas of intellectual property. He also provides clients with counseling and strategy concerning the procurement of patents and trademarks. In addition, John has provided numerous opinions in patent and trademark matters. 

John has successfully handled a diverse range of federal and state litigation claims on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants in the areas of patents, copyrights, trade secrets, product configuration and trademarks. His experience includes managing cases that involve international and multi-national litigation. He has participated and led teams at trial and Markman hearings in federal courts, and he has argued successfully before the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The past few years, John has led teams in disputes involving both multiple lawsuits and multiple Inter Partes Review (IPR) proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.

Since 2007, John has been recognized as a Leading Lawyer in Intellectual Property by Chambers USA, most recently ranked in Band 1 in Ohio (2023). Chambers USA researchers reported, "John receives notable acclaim for his broad contentious and non-contentious practice and is particularly noted for his work in patent litigation." Clients interviewed by Chambers USA stated, "John is a great lawyer. He's a wonderful litigator and a consummate professional. John is a really good litigator who picks the right fights. He's also a personable lawyer and a very good speaker. He takes difficult subjects and makes them easier to understand. He's hard-working and has good judgment."

John was previously a featured speaker at a Cincinnati Intellectual Property Law Association meeting where he gave a presentation titled “The State of Patent Law and Possible Upcoming Changes.”

John began working in intellectual property as a Patent and Trademark Coordinator at Bailey Controls in 1985. He began his career as an attorney with Jones Day from 1989-1993. John has served on Calfee's Management Committee since 2010. He was elected Vice Chair of the firm in 2021. John served as Chair of the Intellectual Property practice group for more than 10 years.

Honors & Recognitions

  • Chambers USA , Intellectual Property, Band 1, Ohio (2007-2023)
  • Best Lawyers "Lawyer of the Year" in Patent Law in Cleveland (2024)
  • The Best Lawyers in America®Litigation - Intellectual Property and Patent Law (2012-2024)
  • "IP Star," Managing Intellectual Property Magazine
  • Inductee, 2023 Class of the Cleveland State University College of Law Hall of Fame

Education

J.D., cum laude, Cleveland State University College of Law, 1989

B.S. in Electronic Technology, cum laude, Bowling Green State University, 1985

Experience

Experience

  • Managing the entire patent portfolio directed to radiation oncology therapeutics and analytics technology for a publicly traded, multinational company headquartered on the West Coast. The portfolio encompasses dozens of seminal patents, particularly in the areas of combining imaging and therapeutic techniques in one integrated device. Calfee takes an active role in securing intellectual property rights on new and developing technologies emerging from the client's vigorous research group, including drafting and prosecuting its domestic and international patent applications. Calfee works with the company’s scientists and engineers as well as notable university researchers with whom the company collaborates. Calfee also manages the company’s numerous international applications.
  • Handling IP matters for a publicly traded, Fortune 1000, global manufacturer, including drafting and prosecuting dozens of patent applications directed to technology of strategic importance to the client. Calfee routinely manages and assists with matters related to patent prosecution and IP strategy, management and strategy of patent and trademark portfolios, and advice on IP strategy and litigation. Calfee currently is handling three patent reissue matters that are key to the client's protection of critically important technology. Calfee also is handling "take-down" disputes related to infringers of the client's patents on the Amazon.com website.
  • Serving as primary IP counsel for a publicly traded, Fortune 500, global manufacturing client and its operating companies with responsibility for the client's worldwide IP portfolio, including 1,000+ patent matters and 2,000+ trademark matters. With regard to clearance, Calfee provides right-to-use and non-infringement analyses and opinions. With regard to procurement, we provide patentability and registrability analyses and opinions. We also prepare, file, and prosecute patent and trademark applications.
  • Serving as primary IP counsel for a publicly traded manufacturer and its operating companies with responsibility for more than 125 active patent and trademark matters for this client. With regard to clearance, we provide right-to-use and non-infringement analyses and opinions. With regard to procurement, we provide patentability and registrability analyses and opinions. Calfee also prepares, files, and prosecutes patent and trademark applications, and we represent the company in IP-related disputes.
  • Serving as chief outside IP counsel for a multi-billion dollar, publicly traded, Fortune 1000, multinational holding company with multiple operating companies based in the U.S. and abroad. Calfee is responsible for patent annuity payments on all patent matters and assists many of the operating companies with the prosecution of patent applications, both in the U.S. and internationally. Calfee manages the U.S. trademark and patent work directly and supervises a network of foreign associates when action is required in foreign jurisdictions. Calfee also offers primary counsel on the impact of corporate reorganization efforts on the ownership and management of the IP of the operating companies. Calfee IP lawyers supervise most of the intellectual property due diligence related to the mergers and acquisition activity of the client. Calfee represents the company in several trade secret matters.
  • Representing a publicly traded, Fortune 1000 company and its operating entities spanning several continents in its complex intellectual property litigation and transactional matters. These matters range from complex IP deals (purchases, licensing, government contract issues) to infringement and theft of trade secret disputes, including multiple multi-million-dollar patent enforcement matters, an IP Option and Evaluation agreement to acquire a large IP portfolio and to assume government contracts, and an arbitration/litigation matter to resolve trade secret and contract claims relating to military and civilian systems.
  • Serving as global Intellectual Property Lead Counsel for an Asia-based manufacturer, representing the client in district court litigation matters and prosecuting patent applications. The patent work for this client includes patent infringement matters filed in district courts in two states and the Federal Circuit as well as in six inter partes reviews before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. Additionally, Calfee is the Lead Settlement Counsel for a global series of patent, trade secret, and antitrust cases against the client’s main competitor, and the Calfee team works closely with the client’s overseas counsel. These actions are being heard in a variety of forums in four countries.

Professional & Community

Professional & Community

  • Cleveland State University College of Law's IP Advisory Council, Chair
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Cleveland Intellectual Property Law Association (CIPLA), Member
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Greater Cleveland, President, Board of Directors 

Client Feedback

Client Feedback

  • "John is a great lawyer." – Chambers USA client, as reported in the Chambers USA 2023 Guide
  • "He's a wonderful litigator and a consummate professional. John is a really good litigator who picks the right fights. He's also a personable lawyer and very good speaker." – Chambers USA clients, as reported in the Chambers USA 2022 Guide
  • "John receives notable acclaim for his broad contentious and non-contentious practice while being particularly 'well respected for his work in patent litigation.' Clients hold him in high regard, stating 'Our interaction with him has been amazing, and his overall performance is very good.'" – Chambers USA researchers, as reported in the Chambers USA 2020 Guide
  • "John Cipolla at Calfee, Halter & Griswold is an excellent patent litigator. We have worked with John for a number of years and really trust him. The Calfee team provides sound legal advice and has the ability to handle tough cases with high exposure." – Calfee client, as reported by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® in the 2020 “Best Law Firms” rankings report
  • "John Cipolla is thorough, knowledgeable, and brings good ideas to the table." – Calfee client, as reported in the Chambers USA 2019 Guide
  • “John Cipolla is held in ‘very high regard’ by fellow practitioners, who note his extensive experience representing clients in IP litigation, appellate work, and before the PTAB. His practice includes advising on product configuration, trade secrets, and wider patent and trademark matters.” – Chambers USA researchers, as reported in a Chambers USA Guide

News & Events

News

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Licensed In

  • Ohio 
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

"John takes difficult subjects and makes them easier to understand. He's hard-working and has good judgment."

Client quote from Chambers USA

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