Sharon A. Hwang
Sharon Hwang practices in all areas of intellectual property law with particular emphasis on patent litigation and intellectual property counseling. For more than twenty years, Sharon has represented patentees and defendants in high-stakes patent litigation in federal courts and in the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. She also advises clients on the acquisition and development of intellectual property portfolios. Her practice spans such diverse technologies as medical devices, implantable defibrillators, orthopedic implants, drug eluting stents, surgical navigation systems, drift tube linear accelerators, digital cellular telephones, interactive television systems and complex communication systems.
Sharon has extensive experience in federal trial and appellate courts involving patent, trademark and antitrust claims. She has served as trial counsel in numerous patent infringement lawsuits, handling pre-suit strategy through post-trial motions. Sharon has successfully argued numerous appeals before the Federal Circuit, and has taken primary responsibility for preparing briefs in the United States Supreme Court.
Recently, Sharon and a team of McAndrews attorneys secured a $70 million lost profits damages award on behalf of a medical device company in a patent infringement case tried before a jury in the Western District of Michigan. That jury verdict was one of National Law Journal's Top Verdicts of 2013. In late 2014, Sharon argued before the Federal Circuit and won an affirmance of that award. In late 2015, the United States Supreme Court granted Sharon's petition for certiorari on an issue pertaining to the district court's award of enhanced damages under 35 U.S.C. §284.
Sharon was selected as an Illinois Super Lawyer for 2015 and 2016 and was previously honored by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association as one of its "Best Lawyers Under 40." In 2015, she received the Sandra R. Otaka Leadership Award from the Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago, as well as an Advocate for Diversity Award from the Diversity Scholarship Foundation. In 2016, she received the Vanguard Award from the Chinese American Bar Association.
Sharon serves on McAndrews' Executive Committee. She also spearheaded the launch of the firm's Diversity in Patent Law Fellowship, which encourages diversity in the field of intellectual property law. Sharon is a Fellow of Leadership Greater Chicago, and she currently serves as President of the Asian American Bar Association Law Foundation and Vice President of the Board of Directors for the Chicago Legal Clinic. She also serves on the Executive Board of the Chicago Committee for Minorities in Large Law Firms and the Board of Directors for the Chinese American Bar Association. Sharon was recently appointed to serve on the Alumni Board for the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana. She previously served as the President of the Asian American Bar Association of Chicago.
Sharon is a frequent speaker on patent law as well as diversity issues. She has spoken at events for the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, Practising Law Institute, Minority Corporate Counsel Association, Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago, Coalition of Women's Initiatives in Law, Diversity Scholarship Foundation, Northwestern University School of Law, University of Chicago School of Law, the University of Illinois Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, and weSTEM (Women Empowered in STEM).
As a law student, Sharon was the Managing Editor of the Uniform Commercial Code Digest, Boston College Law School's commercial law review. She also provided pro bono legal services to Boston's Chinatown community.
Honors & Awards
- Illinois Super Lawyers (2015, 2016)
- Vanguard Award, Chinese American Bar Association
- Advocate for Diversity Award, Diversity Scholarship Foundation
- Sandra R. Otaka Leadership Award, Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago (2015)
- Female Power Brokers, Law360 (2014)
- Fellow, Leadership Greater Chicago (2011)
- Fellow, American Bar Foundation (2010-present)
- Presidential Leadership Award, Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago (2010)
- Outstanding Diversity Leader, Diversity Scholarship Foundation (2010)
- Next Generation of Diversity Leaders, Chicago Lawyer Magazine (2009)
- Best Lawyers Under 40, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (2007)
- "Recent Supreme Court Decisions in Patent Cases - - How Helpful Have They Been?," Practising Law Institute, Patent Litigation 2015 (2015)
- "The Changing Paths to Success in Large Law Firms," Coalition of Women's Initiatives/Chicago Committee Joint Program, Panelist (2014)
- "When the Jury Doesn't Look Like You," National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, 25th Annual Conference, Panelist (2013)
- "From Smart Phones to Surgical Navigation Systems: How Patents Protect Innovation," University of Illinois Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Speaker (2013)
- "America Invents and Patent Litigation Trends," Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago, Seventh Annual Federal Judicial Panel, Moderator (2011)
- "High Profile and Complex Litigation from the Outside In: Tips from Diverse Litigators Turned In-House Counsel," National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, 23rd Annual Conference, Moderator (2011)
- "The Role of Diversity in Private Law Firms," Northwestern University School of Law, Panelist (2011)
- "Women Partners and Women in Senior Corporate Management," Diversity Scholarship Foundation, Panelist (2010)
- "The Road to Partnership," Coalition of Women's Initiatives in Law, Panelist (2010)
- "The Judicial Appointment and Election Process," University of Chicago School of Law, Panelist (2010)
- "Emerging Legal Trends in Patent Law," Minority Corporate Counsel Association, Panelist (2009)
- "Chief Patent Counsel's View on Intellectual Property Trends for Business Lawyers," Minority Corporate Counsel Association, Moderator (2007)
Professional & Community Involvement
- President, Asian American Bar Association Law Foundation
- Vice President, Chicago Legal Clinic
- Executive Committee, McAndrews, Held & Malloy
- Secretary, Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms
- Board Member, Chinese American Bar Association
- Alumni Board Member, University of Illinois Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Areas of Practice
Bar Admissions / Registrations
- United States Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
- Trial Bar for the Northern District of Illinois
- U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
- Boston College Law School, J.D.
- University of Illinois, B.S., Electrical Engineering