Our Team

  • Team
  • Board of Directors
  • Board of Advisors
  • Joe Chernesky
    Joe Chernesky
    Founder and CEO
  • Bill Goldman
    Bill Goldman
    Senior Vice President, Chief IP Counsel
  • Ira Blumberg
    Ira Blumberg
    Senior Vice President, Client Strategy and Services
  • Zack Higgins
    Zack Higgins
    Senior Vice President, Chief IP Strategist
  • Bill Thomas
    Bill Thomas
    Senior Vice President, Finance and Operations
  • Ken Dyer
    Ken Dyer
    Senior Vice President, Client Strategy and Services
  • Mark Nell
    Mark Nell
    Vice President, Client Strategy and Services
  • Seamus Bartlett
    Seamus Bartlett
    Director, Finance and Operations
  • Michael Gulliford
    Michael Gulliford
    Investor
  • Mona Sabet
    Mona Sabet
    Board Advisor
  • Peter Detkin
    Peter Detkin
    Board Advisor
  • Gustav Brismark
    Gustav Brismark
    Board Advisor
Joe Chernesky
Founder and CEO

Joe has more than 20 years of general management and P&L experience at Fortune 100 technology companies, private equity, and innovative start-ups. Joe launched VideoLabs as an industry sponsored and funded solution with the primary mission of significantly reducing the cost and risk of patents to all video companies by disrupting the current patent assertion model. Joe also serves on the Board of Directors of several technology companies as well as the non-profit organization, Village Enterprise.

Most recently, from 2012 until 2019, Joe was President of Nagra IP, Inc and Senior Vice President of innovation, intellectual property and corporate development at the Kudelski Group, a Swiss public company and world leader in digital security and convergent media solutions.

Prior to Kudelski, from 2010 to 2012, Joe served as Vice President and General Manager of global licensing at Intellectual Ventures (IV). In this role, Joe led IV’s outbound licensing activities, programs and customer engagements, and managed a broad and diverse team of licensing executives, technologists and other IP professionals worldwide.

In 2004, Joe co-founded IPotential and served as President and Chief Operating Officer. IPotential was one of the first high-tech patent brokerages and was also a leading provider of IP strategy and patent monetization services.

Prior to IPotential, from 2001 through 2004, Joe served as Vice President of Boeing Management Company, where he was responsible for its IP policy, strategies and initiatives. He also served concurrently as director of IP business for The Boeing Company.

Before joining Boeing, Joe was one of the first MBA graduates to enter the high-tech patent field when he joined Intel in 1996. At Intel, he held several management positions in IP licensing and business development, new product development and corporate treasury.

Throughout his career, Joe has managed and participated in patent monetization transactions that have generated in excess of $2B in revenue. Based this experience and these results, Joe has also been consistently recognized as one of IAM’s top 40 IP deal makers and top 300 IP strategists.

Joe earned a BS and MBA from the University of Arizona and served for 10 years as a US naval officer in various assignments throughout the world.

Joe has too many hobbies most of which include exploration – extensive travel with his family, flying around California as a private pilot, and competing in a plethora of exercise challenges and competitions.

Bill Goldman
Senior Vice President, Chief IP Counsel

Bill is a seasoned IP veteran with two decades of experience in all phases of IP strategy. Throughout his legal career, Bill has served as a subject matter IP expert pioneering new and complex monetization structures, developing successful patent licensing programs, creating winning global patent litigation strategies, and designing strategic portfolio development initiatives.

Most recently, Bill was Vice President of Intellectual Property for the Kudelski Group – a world leader in digital security and convergent media solutions in video, pay television and over the top end-to-end content delivery and content security – where he and Joe Chernesky started the IP licensing function for the Group in 2012, and closed patent licensing deals valued in excess of $250M.

Prior to joining the Kudelski Group, Bill was a Licensing Executive at Intellectual Ventures where he led development and implementation of the operational model and strategic plan for IV’s patent divestiture monetization program.

Bill’s previous experience also includes a 12-year career in private law firm practice at DLA Piper and its predecessor Gray Cary where he represented emerging growth, small-, mid- and large- cap technology clients. While a partner at DLA Piper from 2005 to 2010 Bill’s practice focused on patent litigation matters, for which he was lead counsel. These litigations covered a wide range of technology areas, including electrical systems, telecommunications, Internet technologies, software and user interfaces.

Bill has a BS in Electrical & Electronics Engineering from Michigan State University and a JD from Syracuse University. He is a registered patent attorney at the United States Patent and Trademark Office and an active member of the California Bar. He frequently speaks on IP issues at LES and other IP specialist conferences and vigorously supports programs promoting leadership and development opportunities for young IP professionals.

Ira Blumberg
Senior Vice President, Client Strategy and Services

Ira has 25+ years of experience as an attorney focused on patents and patent licensing in high-tech. Ira was Lenovo’s Vice President of Intellectual Property from 2012-2019. He was responsible for overseeing all aspects of patent licensing, including management of Lenovo’s patent portfolio and patent filings, and advising on and managing significant litigation matters. Ira was also the lead negotiator on all IP issues for Lenovo’s acquisitions of Motorola from Google and the x86 server business from IBM.

Before Lenovo, Ira was a Licensing Executive at Intellectual Ventures, based in Tokyo. Prior to IV, Ira was Vice President of Licensing at Rambus Inc. During his tenure there from 2004-2010, Ira structured, negotiated, drafted, and closed patent licensing deals valued in excess of $1.5B.

Before Rambus, Ira was Director of Licensing at Intel where he managed Intel’s team responsible for all aspects of patent licensing. He joined Intel in 1997. While at Intel, Ira negotiated, drafted and closed the patent license agreement between Intel and LG Electronics that became the basis of the US Supreme Court case Quanta Computer Inc v LG Electronics, Inc.

Before going in-house, Ira was an associate at Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich & Rosati in Palo Alto, CA and Hughes, Hubbard and Reed in Washington, DC. Prior to his legal career, Ira was a computer engineer, holding engineering and management positions, including as a Member of Technical Staff at Bell Telephone Laboratories. Ira earned his JD from the University of Virginia and his MS in Computer Science and BS in Applied Science, both from the University of Pennsylvania.

Zack Higgins
Senior Vice President, Chief IP Strategist

A Harvard Law grad and legal executive, Zack has 2 decades of experience in patent strategy, litigation and monetization on both sides of the table, for entities ranging from Fortune 50 companies to solo inventors.

Zack’s extensive IP experience includes 2 years as Senior VP, Tech+IP Advisory at Houlihan Lokey; 4 years as Senior IP Strategist at Intellectual Ventures; 7 years as VP & General Counsel at IPotential / Epicenter IP (a leading IP brokerage and consultancy); and 4 years as a patent litigation partner at Kirkland & Ellis. Zack has delivered more than $1 billion in patent sales, licensing revenue, and risk reduction by building and managing all aspects of patent brokerage, licensing, and litigation campaigns. Zack created custom artificial intelligence neural networks and Python code to that he used to review and categorize more than 120,000 patents.

Zack has led licensing negotiations; selected and managed litigation, prosecution, and post-grant counsel, including for trial and appeal; and created claim construction, infringement, and validity arguments that won in the ITC, district court, and Federal Circuit. Zack has also led technical analysis for patent litigation, licensing, and brokerage, and developed deep technical proof, including by obtaining and analyzing decompiled mobile app source code, communications revealed by developer tools, and captured packets. Additionally, Zack has managed patent portfolios and strategic prosecution to identify the best patents and enhance ROI.

Zack graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School and cum laude from Yale University with a B.A. in History and International Studies, with distinction in both majors. Zack is an Eagle Scout and fluent in Japanese.

Bill Thomas
Senior Vice President, Finance and Operations

Bill has more than 20 years of business and leadership experience directing global teams for large multinationals, SMBs, and startups. For the past decade, Bill focused on developing creative go-to- market strategies, driving revenue and business development activities and managing all the financial and operational aspects of intellectual property licensing businesses.

Most recently, Bill was a VP at the Kudelski Group where he led the patent licensing, business development and acquisition functions. Under his leadership, Kudelski’s IP and Innovation team achieved its highest ever revenue and profit. Bill also supported the company’s US-based corporate development and M&A initiatives through new lead development and qualification.

Prior to Kudelski, Bill was VP of Channel Licensing and Sales at Intellectual Ventures where he ran the large-scale business development, channel licensing and patent sales organizations and was a key member of the Global Licensing leadership team.

Bill’s previous experience also includes more than 10 years at JPMorgan Chase as a VP in the corporate finance and risk management groups and as a consultant at Deloitte Consulting where he advised Fortune 50 clients and led teams to achieve business strategy and performance improvement objectives.

Through his career, Bill has led and participated in patent monetization transactions that generated in excess of $500M.

Bill received his BA in Business from the University of Washington and an MBA from the Rotterdam School of Management in the Netherlands. Bill is a US Navy veteran and has served on several for-profit and non-profit boards.

Ken Dyer
Senior Vice President, Client Strategy and Services

Ken has more than 20 years of experience as an attorney and executive counseling clients and leading teams focused on patent matters in diverse high-technology areas. This experience
includes both asserting and defending against patents. Throughout his career, Ken has created and implemented effective defensive patent strategies and patent monetization programs using numerous tools including strategic portfolio building, licensing, and litigation.

Prior to joining VideoLabs, Ken was Vice President of Licensing at Tela Innovations where he managed licensing Tela’s patent portfolio. In this role, he developed Tela’s overall licensing strategy and led negotiation of all patent license agreements. Under Ken’s leadership, Tela closed numerous royalty-bearing licensing deals with large semiconductor and consumer electronics companies, including Samsung, Qualcomm, TSMC, and Google.

Before joining Tela, Ken served in two key roles at Intellectual Ventures. From 2007-2011 Ken was the Lead Licensing Attorney for the Semiconductor and Hardware IP Business Units and was responsible for developing the legal structure of Intellectual Ventures’ semiconductor and consumer electronics licensing programs. He also managed a team of attorneys that implemented the associated strategies. As a Licensing Executive from 2011-2013, Ken was responsible for all aspects of negotiating licenses with companies in Asia and the United States. During his time at Intellectual Ventures, Ken played a major role in the initial launch of IV’s licensing programs and was directly involved in closing multiple royalty-bearing licensing deals.

Earlier in his career, as outside counsel, Ken represented clients in patent litigation, licensing and other patent related matters as a partner at Perkins Coie LLP and as an associate at both
Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

Through his career, Ken has led and participated in patent monetization transactions that generated in excess of $1B.

Prior to his legal career, Ken was a US naval officer, serving aboard the nuclear ballistic missile submarines USS Alaska and USS Henry L. Stimson. Ken earned his JD from Harvard University and his BS in Systems Engineering from the United States Naval Academy.

Ken has numerous hobbies, however, in his free time, he can most often be found cycling and letting the road decide his destination.

Mark Nell
Vice President, Client Strategy and Services

Mark is an accomplished IP Professional with a track record of licensing high profile patent portfolios as well as implementing buy and sell programs for intellectual property assets. In 1989, Mark began his career at BTG in London, an intellectual property company with a world-famous history of creating value by investing in R&D and licensing the resulting patents to industry. Included in some of BTG’s most well- known licensing programs were the monetization of patents relating to the MRI Spin Warp Echo, Daily Disposable Contact Lenses, Two-Part Hip Cup, Cholesterol Assays and Pyrethrin insecticides. Mark participated in the licensing programs for both the MRI and the Pyrethrin portfolios. Also, while at BTG, Mark participated in the patent licensing and sale programs for the Reisman portfolio that covered key aspects of over-the-air software updates for mobile phones, the WebNav portfolio that covered search- based web navigation technology, and the Celltrace licensing program focused on SIM card technology. During his time at BTG, Mark participated in patent licensing and sale deals that generated over $150M of revenue.

In addition to running licensing programs, Mark has considerable experience in patent acquisitions and divestitures. From 2006 to 2008, Mark worked with Interdigital to identify best in class assets to support Interdigital’s telecoms licensing programs. Also, from 2008-2011, Mark worked with Coller Capital to dispose of patent assets acquired from ETRI, IBM and Philips.

More recently, in 2012, Mark joined Joe Chernesky and Bill Goldman at the Kudelski Group as Head of Licensing, EMEA. His responsibilities included developing and implementing licensing programs for EMEA specifically. Through Mark’s efforts, Kudelski licensed its patents broadly in EMEA and generated over $60M in licensing revenue.

In total, Mark has managed patent licensing and sales transactions totaling more than $250M.

Mark has a B.S. in Economics from Potchefstroom University, South Africa. He has been an active speaker on IP matters and has represented Kudelski at numerous IP conferences around the world.

Seamus Bartlett
Director, Finance and Operations

Seamus has 9 years of experience in corporate and academic finance and operations. Since 2018, Seamus has been a consulting business and finance analyst with the Kudelski Group. For the two years prior his work with the Kudelski Group, Seamus was a Fiscal Coordinator for the University of Oregon, College of Arts and Sciences. During his tenure, he reviewed budgets for 43 departments within the College, managed and analyzed the college-relevant UO Foundation Funds, and oversaw the owner’s budget for the Tykeson Hall capital construction project. Before the University of Oregon, Seamus spent 7 years working as the Finance, Operations and Logistics Manager for American Precision Gear Company, a family-owned manufacturing company. In this role working alongside the CEO, he led accounting, reporting, corporate operations, and logistics. He worked with contractors and customers to ensure workflow, managing over 50 active contracts ranging from sole proprietors to multinational corporations and government entities. Seamus graduated with honors, earning his BS in Business Management from Notre Dame de Namur University.

Michael Gulliford
Investor

Michael is the Founder of the patent advisory firm Soryn IP Group, as well as its sister company Soryn Capital, which offers an array of financial solutions designed to protect and unlock the value of intellectual property. At Soryn, Michael is a trusted partner and investor to man of the world’s most prestigious universities, law firms, companies and inventors. He remains the name behind a significant number of the most talked about patent deals in the world, and he has repeatedly been recognized as one of the leading IP strategists in the world.

Prior to founding Soryn, Michael was a partner in the Intellectual Property group at Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Michael graduated magna cum laude from the Seton Hall University School of Law and received his B.A. in Neuroscience from Columbia University.

Mona Sabet
Board Advisor

Mona’s expertise is in turning knowledge of a company’s market, technology and culture into actionable strategy that drives growth.

Mona’s experience covers both large public companies and startups. She currently severs as Chief Corporate Strategy Officer at User Testing, a San Francisco-based company powering customer-centric design and decisions through on-demand human insights. Prior to that, Mona was Managing Director of Tribal Advisors where she helped early stage tech companies develop their growth strategies and negotiate successful exits. As Corporate Vice President, Business Development at Cadence, she led mergers and acquisitions, strategic transactions and venture investments, delivering tens of millions of dollars in incremental revenue. She also led the definition of the company’s acquisition and partnership strategy, enabling Cadence to expand into adjacent growth markets. Mona has also been an operator in two early-stage startups: Coverity, which led the market in the automation of identifying software vulnerabilities; and Viblio, which pioneered automated tagging of user generated videos using machine learning and computer vision. Mona acts as an advisor to numerous technology startups and accelerators.

Mona holds an engineering degree from the University of Toronto, a J.D. from the University of Western Ontario, and management certificates from Simon Fraser University and UC, Berkeley.

Peter Detkin
Board Advisor

Peter joined Sherpa Technology Group in 2017. He is a founder at and still active with Intellectual Ventures, a multi-billion-dollar fund that invest in invention and currently holds over 40,000 patents. Intellectual Asset Management magazine recently named Mr. Detkin the second most influential “IP market maker” in the world.

Prior to joining Intellectual Ventures, Mr. Detkin spent 8 years at Intel Corporation where he was a vice president and assistant general counsel. At Intel, Mr. Detkin was responsible for managing the patent and licensing departments, and the litigation and competition policy departments. In this role, he oversaw all aspects of patent prosecution and claims management as well as all antitrust issues. Before he joined Intel, Mr. Detkin was an intellectual property partner at the law firm of Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich and Rosati in Palo Alto, California. Mr. Detkin was the first patent lawyer hired at this form and formed the basis of its highly successful intellectual property practice.

Mr. Detkin received his B.S.E.E. with honors in 1982 from the University of Pennsylvania’s Moore School of Electrical Engineering and a J.D. in 1985 from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He serves as a member of the Board of Overseers of the University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering and Applied Science. He is also on the Board of Directors of the Brady Campaign and Center to Prevent Gun Violence. Mr. Detkin is an inactive member of the State Bars of California and New York and is registered to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Gustav Brismark
Board Advisor

Gustav Brismark is owner of Kazehara AB, a firm providing strategic IP management advice, primarily focusing on the emerging 5G industry. He is also a board member of Smoltek Nanotech Holdings AB.

From April 2016 to March 2019, Mr Brismark was chief IP officer (CIPO) at Ericsson, which holds one of the industry’s strongest IP portfolios, covering 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G cellular standards. As CIPO, Mr Brismark was responsible for creating a return on investment in Ericsson technology and securing continued value growth by patenting the inventions of Ericsson engineers.

During the last 15 years, Mr Brismark has played a central role in turning Ericsson’s IP rights and licensing organisation into a world-class operation that is an integral part of Ericsson’s global business, with more than 100 revenue-generating licence agreements worldwide. He did this first as vice president of IP rights strategy and thereafter as CIPO.

Mr Brismark has been engaged in FRAND licensing policy at the European Telecommunications Standards Institute and other standards-developing organisations, as well as being a witness in court for Ericsson, explaining its business strategies and its FRAND licensing policy in several litigation processes.

In the 1990s, Mr Brismark worked in wideband code division multiplexing access (WCDMA) research and product management. He was notably active in two international research projects on 3G mobile communication, sponsored by the European Commission. His career also spans international experience, including a two-year stint in Japan.

Mr Brismark joined Ericsson in 1986, after receiving his MSc in physics engineering from Uppsala University, Sweden. He is a co-inventor on several patents relating to algorithm research for 2G and 3G systems for mobile communication and was an inventor of 10 patents relating to global systems for mobile communication and WCDMA technology.