Ideas. Owned.®
David R. Cleveland

David's experience includes both in-house positions and private practice, and is uniquely international in scope. He began his career with the 3M Office of Intellectual Property Counsel and held various positions over the span of 20 years, including a five-year post in Brussels Belgium as Senior IP Counsel for Europe and three years as Assistant Chief IP Counsel. In 2002, David co-founded the IPLM Group and led a successful team of IP practitioners until joining Patterson Thuente IP in 2016.

Professional Experience

David Cleveland is a patent attorney with more than 40 years of experience in intellectual property law. Serving as Of Counsel for the firm, he brings an invaluable depth of knowledge and experience to the team and our clients.

His work for clients, both domestic and international includes: Patent drafting and prosecution; IP portfolio management; global market-protection strategies; providing opinions on patentability, clearance, validity, and infringement; post issuance proceedings; drafting and counseling on complex IP-related agreements; licensing, acquisitions and divestitures; and expert witness reports and testimony.

Representative Technologies

David works primarily with large corporate legal departments on patent matters in the following technology areas:

  • Chemistry
  • Medical devices
  • Materials
  • Oil refining
  • Asphalt
  • Paints
  • Coatings
  • Optics
  • Mechanical devices

Practice Areas

  • Intellectual Property Law


  • University of Minnesota Law School, Minneapolis, Minnesota
    • J.D. - 1979
    • Honors: cum laude
  • Macalester College
    • Honors: cum laude
    • Major: Chemistry and Economics
    • Minor: Mathematics


  • “Let’s Make a Deal – Practical Experiences in Getting Licensed Products to Market,” 2009 Whistler Intellectual Property conference
  • “Recent Changes in the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO),” 2009 Minnesota Interprofessional Association
  • “Adapting your Practice to Changes in the USPTO,” 2008 Whistler Intellectual Property conference
  • “An American Lawyer’s View of the European Community Design,” 2003 Whistler Intellectual Property conference
  • “Contrasting American and European Claim Drafting and Construction,” 2002 Whistler Intellectual Property conference
  • “Inventorship Determination and Interference Preparation,” 2001 AIPLA International Education Committee Seminars (Moscow and Warsaw)
  • “Improvement Patents and Selection Inventions,” 2000 AIPLA International Education Committee Seminars (Prague and Budapest)
  • “The International Trade Commission,” with Thomas Smith, 2000 AIPLA International Education Committee Seminar (Bucharest)
  • “Getting Patents,” 1996 AIPLA International Education Committee Seminar (Moscow)
  • “Planning Litigation Strategy in Europe: The Role of In-House Patent Counsel,” 1995 EuroForum Patent Litigation Conference (London)
  • “Industrial Designs,” with Bernard Posner, 1993 Management Center Europe Intellectual Property Conference, (Florence)

Professional Associations

  • American Intellectual Property Law Association, Speaker, International Education Committee, 1996 to 2001
  • Minnesota Intellectual Property Law Association, Member Board of Directors, 1990-91 and 1997-2000
  • Minnesota State Bar Association U.K. Law Society
  • Minnesota Intellectual Property Law Association, President, 1998 to 1999
  • American Bar Association, IPL Section Special Committee 553 on Corporate Practice, Chair, 1996 to 1999

Bar Admissions

  • Minnesota Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court District of Minnesota
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • England and Wales

Current Employment Position

  • Of Counsel - Patent Attorney