Posts Tagged ‘MAC’

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A Note of Thanks: Celebrating Walter Bastian’s Lifetime of Achievement

November 2, 2012

Francisco Sánchez serves as the Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade. Follow him on Twitter @UnderSecSanchez.

Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Western Hemisphere Walter M. Bastian

Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Western Hemisphere Walter M. Bastian

Walter Bastian embodies the best of public service.  He doesn’t measure success by how well he does, but by how well he can help others.  And during his decades at the Department of Commerce, he has indeed helped others and made great contributions to the global community.

In recognition of his accomplishments, last week, Walter was one of nine recipients of the 2012 Americas Award for his lifetime of achievement.  Having had the chance to work with him closely in recent years, I must tell you: he is very deserving of this honor.

As Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Western Hemisphere, Walter has developed programs, policies and strategies to strengthen the United States’ commercial position in the region — the destination for roughly 40 percent of U.S. exports.  And in doing so, he’s also committed himself to expanding opportunity and prosperity throughout the Americas.

One of Walter’s greatest accomplishments was playing a central role in founding the Americas Competitiveness Forum (ACF).  The initial idea for a meeting of Western Hemisphere commerce ministers was offered by President George W. Bush at the 2005 Summit of the Americas.  Walter helped make that idea a reality.

Walter saw beyond what was being asked and instead focused on what more could be accomplished. He understood that competitiveness is not just a national issue, but a hemispheric one.

For that reason, he set about creating a forum to motivate the region’s government leaders to work in partnership with the private sector, academia, and civil society to improve the economic prosperity of their own countries, and ensure a brighter future for the people of the region.

Since its inauguration in 2007, the ACF has become the preeminent economic and commercial event in the Americas, attracting hundreds of participants from the Western Hemisphere’s public and private sectors.  It has helped to create and strengthen the kinds of partnerships that are necessary for regional integration and future growth.

Bottom line: progress is achieved by people who want to make a difference.  And Walter Bastian has made a difference.  He has dedicated his time, talent and passion to bringing the Americas closer together through commerce. And we have all benefited.

On behalf of the International Trade Administration, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and our partners throughout the region — thank you, Walter.

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World IP Day

April 24, 2009

Andrea Cornwell is an International Trade Specialist with the Office of Intellectual Property Rights in the International Trade Administration’s Market Access & Compliance unit.

Intellectual property surrounds us almost constantly. And it’s not just McDonald’s trademark Golden Arches or Apple’s patented iPod technology or Miley Cyrus’ latest copyrighted album. For instance, I would bet that you create content protected by copyright nearly every day. Have you written an email today? Have you doodled on your notebook during a meeting or class this week? Have you snapped a family photo recently? If so, then you’re an author – an author with a copyrighted work.

The fact that intellectual property rights (IPR) exist in so many facets of our daily lives just goes to show that our Founding Fathers were right – provide people with legal protection for their inventions and creative works, and technology will advance, knowledge will spread, and societies will progress. Did you know that our Constitution authorizes Congress to protect inventors’ and authors’ creative works? Or, that our current trademark law preserves a long American heritage of 120-plus years of protection for our entrepreneurs’ trade names, logos, and the like?

In fact, IPR is so essential to continued global development and trade that each year we celebrate World Intellectual Property Day on April 26th. This year, World IP Day focuses on Green Innovation and the important role of IPR in promoting the advancement and diffusion of increasingly critical technologies for the mitigation of climate change. This coincides nicely with widespread celebration of Earth Day on April 22nd, and provides us with an opportunity to proudly say that, as global environmental needs evolve, our American entrepreneurs are developing new means for addressing them. According to the House Small Business Committee, the renewable and efficiency industries, comprised of more than 90% small firms, created 8 million new jobs in 2006. The

U.S. Conference of Mayors estimates that by 2038, the American green tech industry’s development could add another 4.2 million jobs to the economy.

 So, you see, the fundamental IPR principle established so many years ago still rings true today – IPR protection is essential to encouraging innovation and competitiveness. This is particularly relevant to the growing green tech industry, as both U.S. industry and our global community stand to see great benefits from new technologies and methods for addressing climate change. As Francis Gurry, Director General of the UN’s World Intellectual Property Organization, recently said, “The power of human ingenuity is our best hope for restoring the delicate balance between ourselves and our environment.” This World IP Day, the International Trade Administration welcomes the celebration of Green Innovation and our green technology industry.

 For more information on IPR and ITA’s activities related to IPR, please visit StopFakes.gov.

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