Ann McCrackin is Black Hills IP's President as well as a patent prosecution process expert and a highly accomplished patent attorney with extensive experience in both U.S. and international patent prosecution. Before becoming President of Black Hills IP Ann was a Professor of Law and the Director of the nationally recognized Patent Prosecution and Procedure Program at Franklin Pierce Law Center (now the University of New Hampshire School of Law). At Franklin Pierce, Ann directed the program and taught courses in advanced aspects of practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Ann has also taught dozens of continuing legal education courses and seminars on various aspects of patent process and prosecution and has edited and authored a number of legal texts on patent law. Ann is also attorney of record for several Amicus Briefs filed in patent cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Ann was a Shareholder at the Minneapolis patent firm Schwegman, Lundberg & Woessner, P.A. for eight years and now is of counsel at the firm. Ann has an undergraduate degree from Iowa State University and a law degree from Franklin Pierce Law Center.
Jim Brophy - Vice President of Sales
James (Jim) P. Brophy II has over twenty-five years of sales experience, and was instrumental in introducing the first successful web-based IP management system to the intellectual property industry. He also was instrumental in the early growth of the IP outsourcing industry at his prior company. Over the last ten years, Jim’s experience in the IP management and outsourcing business has given him a strong understanding of the patent and trademark process as well as the current needs of the industry. Jim’s outstanding abilities and reputation for honesty have been rewarded by his customers.
Leon Steinberg chairs Black Hills IP’s board of directors. Steinberg has an extensive background in the legal support industry. Mr. Steinberg was the CEO of Intellevate, one of the world’s largest legal process outsource organizations. He was the CEO of FoundationIP, a work process and management system for intellectual property firms and legal departments. He was also a member of CPA Global’s senior management team. Mr. Steinberg was the founder and former CEO of Meritas, the world’s second largest affiliation of law firms. Leon is a former partner at the Maslon law firm in Minneapolis. Leon was a contributing author to the American Bar Association’s Lawyers Handbook and a frequent lecturer to the University Of Michigan Institute Of Law Firm Management. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from William Mitchell College of Law.