PTO head Kappos stepping down

Tuesday - 11/27/2012, 10:53am EST

David Kappos, director of the Patent and Trademark Office, is stepping down early next year.

A PTO spokesman said Kappos will stay with the agency through January 2013. Kappos announced his resignation Monday in an email to PTO employees.

"I believe we have made great progress in reducing the patent backlog, increasing operational efficiency, and exerting leadership in [intellectual property] policy domestically and internationally," Kappos said in a statement.

Kappos has led the agency since August 2009.

During his time at PTO, Congress passed a major overhaul of patent legislation, aimed at streamlining the patent process.

The Wall Street Journal reports Deputy Director Teresa Stanek Rea will take over for Kappos after he steps down.

Acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank said Kappos had done a "terrific job" in pushing the administration's innovation agenda.

"His 3-1/2 year tenure is marked by many notable accomplishments which have helped improve the IP system both here and abroad," Blank said in a statement.

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