PQI and The Clearing House

Askeladden's Patent Quality Initiative is a product of thought leadership provided by The Clearing House Payments Company. The Clearing House has a 161-year tradition of furthering the interests of the commercial banking industry in the United States and helping chart the course of America’s financial industry.

Askeladden's PQI supports better patent quality for all intellectual property stakeholders, including consumers, businesses of all sizes, universities and inventors.

Sean Reilly

Mr. Reilly is General Counsel of Askeladden and Senior Vice President and Associate General Counsel of The Clearing House Payments Company, where he directs intellectual property issues. He is a registered patent attorney whose principal responsibilities include advising members of The Clearing House’s senior business team on vital cybersecurity, intellectual property and technology law issues and transactions. Mr. Reilly coordinates with industry executives and senior lawyers from the nation’s leading banks on technology law issues and initiatives of concern to the financial services industry. Before joining The Clearing House, Mr. Reilly was in private practice and worked at the United States Patent and Trademark Office as a patent examiner.

Jim Howard

Mr. Howard is Associate General Counsel of Askeladden, where he supports all of Askeladden’s Patent Quality Initiative efforts, and Vice President and Associate General Counsel of The Clearing House Payments Company. He is a registered patent attorney with experience in conducting non-infringement analyses, developing invalidity strategies, and handling various other aspects of patent litigation. Before joining The Clearing House, Mr. Howard was in private practice where he represented a variety of defendants, including technology and financial services companies, in patent litigation matters.

Dave Fortney

Mr. Fortney is Executive Vice President, Product Development and Management for The Clearing House. He is responsible for defining strategy, identifying synergistic opportunities and overseeing the development of new products for the company. Currently, Mr. Fortney is leading The Clearing House’s initiative to develop, pilot and launch a secure digital-payments tokenization system. He has deep expertise in conceptualizing and growing innovative e-finance ventures for financial institutions, financial-technology providers and emerging payments companies. 

Rob Hunter

Mr. Hunter is Executive Managing Director and Deputy General Counsel of The Clearing House Payments Company. He serves as the senior lawyer supporting The Clearing House’s ACH, wire transfer, and check-image payment networks that clear and settle approximately $2 trillion daily. Mr. Hunter is also actively involved in counseling payments executives on numerous industry-wide product development initiatives in a variety of payments-related areas, including mobile payments, electronic bill payment, medical payments, and other initiatives. Mr. Hunter also serves on the Board of Advisors for the Wake Forest Journal of Business and Intellectual Property Law and is a frequent speaker and writer on payments, technology and business law issues.