Rick Dunning is special counsel in the Intellectual Property Practice Group in the firm's Silicon Valley and San Diego (Del Mar) offices. 

Areas of Practice

Rick has 25 years of experience in law following a decade practicing as an electrical engineer. He provides a full range of intellectual property services to companies and startups, with a focus on strategic patent planning and execution including patent drafting, prosecution, appeals and post-grant procedures. His technical expertise includes wireless communications, networks and network security, power distribution, semiconductors, computer hardware and software, circuits, digital signal processing, image processing, cryptography, consumer electronics, audio, video, medical devices, geolocation and robotics.

Rick is also skilled in patent and trademark enforcement and litigation. He often deals with patent infringement assertions by non-practicing entities, or "patent trolls." For example, he recently shut down several counterfeiting operations in China and a large gray-market ring in the UK.

Rick is experienced in technology transfer and collaboration agreements, including negotiating joint-venture agreements, investment agreements and white-label agreements. He regularly conducts due-diligence investigations supporting mergers and acquisitions, investments, patent sales and securities issuance. Rick previously served as a mentor for Stanford University's Office of Technology Licensing.

Before joining the firm, Rick served as patent counsel in a corporate environment. Prior to entering the legal profession, Rick designed radar and sonar systems for the Department of Defense, and satellite communications and power distribution systems for NASA. For example, Rick designed onboard communications and power systems for interconnecting the US, European, and Japanese components of the International Space Station.




J.D., George Mason University, 1997

B.S., University of Alabama, 1985, magna cum laude


  • California
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
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