Harvard Law School Dean Robert Clark has announced the establishment of the Hale and Dorr Professorship of Intellectual Property Law. A reception in honor of this professorship will be held this afternoon at the Law School.

“Hale and Dorr is grateful to have the opportunity to expand its relationship with Harvard Law School through this chair,” said William F. Lee, managing partner, Hale and Dorr LLP. “The field of intellectual property is one of the most important and rapidly evolving areas of the law, very much in need of scholarship at the highest level. Together with Harvard Law School, we are committed to leading and contributing to the development of this critical area of the law.”

The field of intellectual property law has grown rapidly in the past decade. As advances are made in the fields of life sciences, computer sciences and engineering, questions of patents, copyrights, and trade secrets have become increasingly complex. Additionally, the growth of international trade and the global economy, have led to increasingly complex transnational IP disputes.

“This professorship will allow us to expand our teaching of intellectual property law as it becomes one of the preeminent legal fields of our time,” said Clark. “I am pleased that the tremendous relationship between Hale and Dorr and Harvard Law School will continue through this very generous gift.”

The Hale and Dorr Professorship of Intellectual Property Law represents a unique collaboration between a law firm and law school. In addition to the professorship, the gift will help fund and sponsor a conference on intellectual property law at Harvard Law School that will be held every two years and organized by the chair holder.

Harvard Law School and Hale and Dorr are currently partners in the Hale and Dorr Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School. This clinical program, based in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston, provides legal services to low-income members of the community. It is the largest university-based provider of legal assistance in the nation.

Lee, Hale and Dorr ‘s managing partner, has served as the John J. Reilly Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School, teaching intellectual property litigation for the past four years. Noted Hale and Dorr attorneys Jerome P. Facher and James D. St. Clair also served as lecturers at the Law School for more than 25 years.