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In Section 839 of the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act, Congress directed the Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) to prepare a report evaluating the implementation of Department of Defense (“DoD”) Instruction 5010.44 relating to Intellectual Property Acquisition and Licensing, including but not limited to, DoD’s establishment of a cadre of intellectual property (“IP”) experts previously directed by Congress. On November 30, 2021, GAO issued a final report to Congress entitled “DOD Should Take Additional Actions to Improve How It Approaches Intellectual Property” (“Report”). The Report made four recommendations: (1) DoD’s planned guidebook on IP (currently expected to be published in the first quarter of 2022) should clarify how DoD personnel can pursue detailed manufacturing or process data; (2) DoD should determine the collaboration, staffing, and resources needed to execute DoD’s proposed approach for the IP Cadre; (3) the Director of the IP Cadre should collaborate with the President of Defense Acquisition University (“DAU”) to prioritize IP-related tasks that DAU should undertake between 2023 through 2025; and (4) the Director of the IP Cadre should develop additional guidance to help identify the DoD personnel in key career fields that would benefit most from receiving IP training and credentials. In response to a draft of the Report, DoD concurred with each of these recommendations.

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Photo of Nicole Owren-Wiest Nicole Owren-Wiest

Nicole Owren-Wiest is a partner and member of the Steering Committee of Crowell & Moring’s Government Contracts Group in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office. Nicole is nationally ranked by Chambers USA in Government Contracts and a recognized leader in two of the most…

Nicole Owren-Wiest is a partner and member of the Steering Committee of Crowell & Moring’s Government Contracts Group in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office. Nicole is nationally ranked by Chambers USA in Government Contracts and a recognized leader in two of the most complex areas in government contracting: accounting, cost, and pricing, and intellectual property/data rights. With over 20 years’ experience, Nicole has a broad counseling and dispute-resolution practice and leads the Group’s cost accounting practice, which focuses on helping clients navigate the government’s complex cost and pricing rules, including the FAR Part 31 cost principles, the Cost Accounting Standards (CAS), and Truth in Negotiations Act/Truthful Cost or Pricing Data (defective pricing).

Photo of John E. McCarthy Jr. John E. McCarthy Jr.

John E. McCarthy, Jr. is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Crowell & Moring and member of the firm’s Government Contracts Group. John has spent more than thirty years litigating all forms of government contracts cases for both large and small…

John E. McCarthy, Jr. is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Crowell & Moring and member of the firm’s Government Contracts Group. John has spent more than thirty years litigating all forms of government contracts cases for both large and small government contractors, with a particular emphasis on bid protests. Because of John’s strong engineering background, he has particular experience in technology related issues, including litigation regarding complex technology and data rights, patent and other intellectual property issues.

Photo of Jonathan M. Baker Jonathan M. Baker

Jonathan M. Baker is a partner in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office. He practices in the Government Contracts Group.

Jon advises clients on a wide array of government contracts legal issues, including both federal and state bid protests, prime-sub disputes, government contracts…

Jonathan M. Baker is a partner in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office. He practices in the Government Contracts Group.

Jon advises clients on a wide array of government contracts legal issues, including both federal and state bid protests, prime-sub disputes, government contracts due diligence and transactions, regulatory compliance, and contract terminations. Jon’s practice has a notable emphasis on technology-related issues, including counseling clients in the areas of patent and data rights, responding to government challenges to technical data and computer software rights assertions, and litigating cases involving complex and cutting edge technologies. Jon also provides guidance on national security matters, such as National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual compliance and facility and security clearance matters. In addition, Jon has advised clients on local government contract negotiation, internal and government investigations regarding potential False Claims Act issues, and export violations. Jon is also actively involved in the firm’s pro bono program, having litigated prisoner neglect, parental rights termination, and landlord-tenant matters.

Photo of Cherie Owen Cherie Owen

Cherie Owen is a senior counsel in the Government Contracts group. Cherie counsels and represents clients in a wide array of government contracts issues, with a focus on bid protests at the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the United States Court…

Cherie Owen is a senior counsel in the Government Contracts group. Cherie counsels and represents clients in a wide array of government contracts issues, with a focus on bid protests at the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the United States Court of Federal Claims. As a former GAO bid protest hearing officer, she resolved some of the most challenging bid protests on procurements ranging from thousands to billions of dollars involving solicitation challenges, proposal evaluation challenges, organizational conflicts of interest, Procurement Integrity Act violations, affirmative responsibility determinations, the conduct of discussions, and competitive range determinations. In this role, Cherie held numerous bid protest hearings. At GAO she handled more than 600 protests and issued more than 500 decisions.

Photo of M.Yuan Zhou M.Yuan Zhou

M. Yuan Zhou is a counsel in the Washington, D.C. office of Crowell & Moring, where she is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts Group.

Yuan’s practice includes a wide range of investigatory, counseling, and transactional capabilities, including: internal investigations related to…

M. Yuan Zhou is a counsel in the Washington, D.C. office of Crowell & Moring, where she is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts Group.

Yuan’s practice includes a wide range of investigatory, counseling, and transactional capabilities, including: internal investigations related to the False Claims Act, the Procurement Integrity Act, and other civil and criminal matters; compliance reviews and enhancing contractor compliance programs; representing clients in suspension and debarment proceedings; counseling on data rights issues, challenges, and disputes; mandatory disclosures; and providing government contracts due diligence in transactional matters. As part of the firm’s State and Local Practice, Yuan also counsels clients on state and local procurement issues, ranging from bid protests to contract negotiations with state agencies, and advises prime contractors and subcontractors on a variety of issues including prime/sub contract formation, disputes, and other government contracts issues.

Photo of Christopher D. Garcia Christopher D. Garcia

Christopher Garcia is a counsel in the Washington, D.C. office of Crowell & Moring, where he is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts Group.

As part of his government contracts practice, Chris conducts internal investigations regarding False Claims Act issues and defends…

Christopher Garcia is a counsel in the Washington, D.C. office of Crowell & Moring, where he is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts Group.

As part of his government contracts practice, Chris conducts internal investigations regarding False Claims Act issues and defends against related government inquiries and investigative demands. Chris also assists clients with technology-related issues, including counseling clients in the areas of patents and data rights, and defending against government challenges to technical data and computer software rights assertions. In addition, Chris performs government contracts due diligence for buyers in transactional matters, representing government contractors in a range of industries. As part of the firm’s State and Local Practice, Chris also counsels clients on state and local procurement issues, including reviewing state and local opportunities, and leading negotiations with government customers regarding contractual terms and conditions. Chris also advises contractors on the federal Freedom of Information Act as well as state-level public records laws. He has counseled contractors in numerous reverse-FOIA actions at the federal and state levels.