Press Releases
Nine More Attorneys, Scientific Advisor Join Brinks Gilson & Lione
New Hires Bring Technical and International Experience as IP Boutique Expands
October 19, 2016

CHICAGO—Brinks Gilson & Lione, one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the country, has hired nine associates and one scientific advisor, announced firm president James R. Sobieraj today: attorneys Emily Kappers, Jason Qiu, Andrea Shoffstall, James P. Stephens, Sen “Alex” Wang, Kyle Yarberry, and Scott I. Yoo, in Chicago, and John Bieber and Andrew W. Umlauf in Indianapolis. Jun Cheng, Ph.D., joins as a scientific advisor in Chicago.

“Brinks continues to respond to our clients’ needs by adding talent in key practice areas, and attorneys with international experience,” said Sobieraj. “The knowledge-based and technology-focused nature of modern business has put intellectual property attorneys in high demand, and as Brinks continues to grow, we’re pleased to be complemented by such an outstanding and skilled group,” Sobieraj added.

The ten newcomers join the more than two dozen attorneys Brinks has hired since mid-2015 from general practice firms, IP boutiques, corporate legal departments, and law schools, adding technical knowledge and experience as the firm continues to grow key practice areas and expand geographically.

In May of 2016, Brinks opened an office in Tampa, its seventh in the U.S. That same month, Brinks filed an application to become the first non-domestic law firm to have a representative office in Shenzhen, a major financial and manufacturing center dubbed “China’s Silicon Valley.” Since May, six attorneys have joined Brinks in Tampa and Washington DC.

A year ago this month, Brinks doubled the size of its office in Research Triangle Park, N.C., adding four experienced intellectual property attorneys and a patent agent from Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice LLP.

Brinks’ new hires include:

John Bieber

John Bieber earned his J.D. in 2016 from the University of Cincinnati College of Law, where he was managing editor of Intellectual Property and Computer Law Journal and an associate member of the Law Review. While attending law school, he researched court rulings and statutes for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Ohio and the Office of the Ohio Attorney General, and summarized case law and amendments pertaining to the Ohio Rules of Civil Procedure as a research assistant. Prior to that, Bieber worked as a process engineering intern for The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company. He graduated cum laude from The Ohio State University with a B.S. in chemical engineering.

Jun Cheng, Ph.D.

Jun Cheng, Ph.D., has extensive research and development experience involving diverse technologies, including laser optics, quantum information, and cell and tissue biology. He most recently directed the Laboratory for Live-cell Imaging and Ultrafast Laser Microsurgery as an assistant professor in the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Prior to that, Dr. Cheng was a research fellow and lecturer at the University of Michigan. He earned his Ph.D. in physics and M.S. in electrical engineering at the University of Michigan, and a B.S. in physics from Peking University in Beijing, China. Cheng is a frequent presenter and author on topics related to biomedical research, physics, and engineering, and is a native speaker of Mandarin Chinese.

Emily Kappers

Emily Kappers is a lateral hire from Northfield, Illinois-based Neal & McDevitt, LLC, where she was an associate and a law clerk with a focus on copyright and trademark matters. In 2015, she graduated cum laude with a J.D. from DePaul University College of Law, where she also earned a Certificate in Intellectual Property. At DePaul, Kappers was lead articles editor and symposium chair for the Journal of Art, Technology, & Intellectual Property Law; vice president of the Art & Cultural Heritage Law Society; and a participant in the National Cultural Heritage Law Moot Court Competition. She also worked while in law school as an extern at the Field Museum of Natural History researching copyright and privacy issues, and as a law clerk at Wiedner & McAuliffe. Kappers holds a B.A. in Communication and English from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Jason Qiu

Jason Qiu earned his J.D. in 2016 from Washington University School of Law, where he was ranked an Outstanding Advocate in the 2014 Wiley Rutledge Moot Court Competition, and received the CALI Excellence for the Future Award, the Excellence in Oral Advocacy Award, and the Scholar in Law Award. Qui gained practical legal experience at The Simon Law Firm, where he was a law clerk for the intellectual property team, and at Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, where he supported all phases of litigation in family law cases. He holds a B.S. in biochemistry from the University of Washington, and is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

Andrea Shoffstall

Andrea Shoffstall earned her J.D. in 2016 from the University of North Carolina School of Law, where she served as the Chief Justice for the Holderness Moot Court. She gained patent prosecution experience as a legal extern in the patent division at business analytics software and services provider SAS Institute, Inc., as a summer associate at intellectual property law firms The Webb Law Firm and Patterson + Sheridan LLP, and as a legal extern at biopharmaceutical firm Quintiles. Shoffstall previously worked on projects related to health care and medical device development for the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Bioengineering, the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh’s Department of Developmental Biology, and Cohera Medical, Inc. She graduated cum laude from the University of Pittsburgh with a B.S. in bioengineering, concentrating in medical device engineering.

James P. Stephens

James Stephens graduated in 2016 with a J.D. from Northwestern University’s Pritzker School of Law. He gained litigation experience while in law school as a legal extern for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Illinois, and worked with outside counsel on issues related to intellectual property infringement while serving as an accounting intern for Elastec/American Marine, Inc. Stephens holds a B.S. in biology and philosophy and a certificate in environmental studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. As an undergraduate, he conducted research for the University of Wisconsin’s Laboratory for Optical and Computational Instrumentation.

Andrew W. Umlauf

Andrew Umlauf is a software systems engineer with several years of experience at start-ups. As lead systems engineer at, he led a team of developers that created the billing system for a cellular-based sump pit monitoring device. As senior systems engineer for telecommunications equipment supplier OmniSite, he designed and implemented a cellular-based sanitation monitoring system. Prior to earning his J.D. in 2016 from the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law, he worked as a software engineer II for Raytheon Technical Services Company and as an engineering intern at Sierra Nevada Corporation. Umlauf holds an MBA from Butler University and a B.S. in computer engineering with a minor in applied mathematics from Purdue University Calumet.

Sen “Alex” Wang

Alex Wang earned a J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School in 2016; he also holds a Juris Master with a concentration in IP from Peking University Law School in Beijing, China. In law school, he was managing editor of the Minnesota Journal of Law, Science & Technology, and gained practical legal experience as a patent law clerk at intellectual property law firm Pauly Devries Smith & Deffner, as a judicial extern to the Honorable Kristin Siegesmund for the Minnesota District Court, Fourth Judicial District, and as a volunteer for the Minnesota Justice Foundation. In China, Wang was an intern in the intellectual property litigation department for King & Wood Mallesons and a research assistant at the National Intellectual Property Strategy Research & Practice Base. Wang earned his B.Eng. in mechanical engineering at the Harbin Institute of Technology. He is admitted to the national bar for the People’s Republic of China and is a native speaker of Mandarin Chinese.

Kyle Yarberry

Yarberry joins Brinks after serving since 2015 as a law clerk for the firm’s patent prosecution practice group. He received his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 2016, working for two summers as an associate in the intellectual property practice group at Michael Best & Friedrich LLP. Prior to attending law school, Yarberry worked for several years in investment banking, initially as an equity research analyst for Robert W. Baird & Co., and later as an associate in the energy and natural resources lending group at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation. He graduated cum laude with a B.S. in mechanical engineering and a B.S. in mathematics from Southern Methodist University. Yarberry holds a U.S. patent for a lightweight cantilever bicycle frame and has applied for a U.S. patent for a cutting head array for mowing pivotally.

Scott I. Yoo

Yoo has extensive legal experience in his native Korea as an attorney in-house and in private practice. While attending Handong International Law School, he worked as a winter associate at Yoon & Yang LLC and at intellectual property boutique DW Partners, and as a summer associate at LOGOS Law, LLC. After graduating cum laude with a J.D. in 2010, Yoo served as senior IP counsel at LG Electronics, Inc., in Seoul—where he had previously worked as an IP legal manager—to manage patent infringement lawsuits filed against LG entities in various U.S. district courts and at the U.S. International Trade Commission. Yoo relocated to the U.S. to attend law school at the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law. He worked as a summer associate and intern on patent prosecution and litigation projects at Quarles & Brady in 2015, and received his J.D. from the University of Arizona in 2016. Yoo holds a B.S. in electrical engineering from Yonsei University in Seoul. He served as a sergeant in the Korean army as part of the Korean Augmentation to the U.S. Army, and is a native speaker of Korean.

About Brinks Gilson & Lione

The attorneys, scientific advisors and patent agents at Brinks Gilson & Lione focus their practice in the field of intellectual property. Brinks is one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the U.S. Clients around the world use Brinks to help them protect and enforce their intellectual property rights. Brinks lawyers provide counseling in all aspects of patent, trademark, unfair competition, trade secret and copyright law. More information is at