October 22, 2019

Checking in with the 2018 IP Champions Awardees


As we approach the 2019 IP Champions Gala, it is worth taking a look back at last year’s awardees. These individuals were recognized for their excellence in a variety of fields and industries across the globe, and deserve continued recognition for their leadership and advocacy on the importance of strong IP protections and the role they play in providing the most effective and safe products, services, and entertainment for consumers.

Given the prevalence of counterfeit goods and harmful consumer products in the online marketplace today, robust IP enforcement is more important than ever. Last year, GIPC recognized two individuals as IP Champions for Excellence in Enforcement for their commitment to protecting consumers from knock-off products – Peter O’Doherty, head of the Economic Crime Directorate for the City of London Police, and Nick Court, the Chief Detective of the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) for the City of London Police. Both officers have been instrumental in curbing the sale of counterfeit products, demonstrating their commitment to protecting consumers and IP rights alike. As a result of the PIPCU’s enforcement efforts, the U.S. and UK continue to stand side-by-side as global leaders on IP enforcement in the U.S. Chamber’s International IP Index.

Innovation is a key pillar of the global economy, driving solutions to unique challenges facing our society today – including and especially those challenges related to health care. Alvin Roth, a 2012 Nobel Prize winner and founder of the Kidney Exchange, and Inderjit Jutla, founder of Aluna, a Silicon Valley technology company that empowers patients with chronic conditions to take charge of their health, earned one of last year’s awards for IP Champion for Excellence in Innovation. Jutla and Roth received the reward in recognition of their problem-solving abilities and unique approaches to health care delivery that have truly saved lives. Our final awardee for Innovation was Uzi Hanuni, another life-saving innovator who leveraged technology to assist first-responders in one of the most high-profile rescue missions in recent memory. Founder and CEO of Maxtech, a radio technology company, Hanuni played a lead role in rescuing the Thai soccer team.

All leaders need a voice among policymakers and regulators to ensure that the best interests of their industries are represented in a way that allows them to continue bettering society. The 2018 IP Champion for Excellence in Advocacy was awarded to Bart Herbison and Steve Bogart, President and Chairman of the Nashville Songwriters Association International.

Creators themselves will always hold a prominent seat at the table at the IP Champions Gala. Last year, GIPC had the pleasure of hosting Kristie Macosko Krieger, an Academy Award-nominated producer who has played a lead role in numerous blockbuster films over the past two decades, and Kira Goldberg, Executive Vice President of Production for 20th Century Fox. Both were awarded the IP Champion for Excellence in Creativity.

Last but certainly not least, GIPC was proud to award an individual who works directly within the IP space: Liu Chunitna, Founding Dean of the Renmin University Intellectual Property Academy in China. He was the country’s first IP lawyer and has helped to craft China’s Copyright Law, Trademark Law, Patent Law, and Anti-Unfair Competition Law since the 1980s. He was awarded recognition as an IP Champion for Excellence in IP Policy for the work he has done to strengthen IP in China.

Our 2018 IP Champions come from a diversity of industries, with a diversity of talents. Yet, across the group, one common thread becomes clear: effective IP protection has enabled each of these innovators, creators, and advocates to become leaders in their field. Thanks to their efforts, innovation and creativity can continue to thrive and transform the lives of consumers around the world.

The IP Champions awards, presented by the Global Innovation Policy Center, recognize leading innovators, creators, and the policymakers who support their work. Since 2013, the awards have been presented annually to honorees from around the world at a ceremony hosted by the GIPC in Washington, DC. The 2019 IP Champions Gala will take place on October 29, 2019. For more information, click here.

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