After years of being a corporate member of the United Inventors Association, I had an opportunity to join their Board of Directors in early 2010. It was from this experience that I had the opportunity see first-hand how this organization is working to help inventors and better the invention industry as a whole.
For independent inventors, navigating the invention process can oftentimes be a scary and difficult challenge. Knowing where to turn and the steps to take to drive an idea through to commercialization isn’t an easy and intuitive process.
The UIA’s Mark Reyland
The UIA, with its mission to educate and help inventors offers a multitude of benefits for inventors in need of invention help and is continually striving to develop improvements and positive change in the invention industry. Originally founded as an extension of the USPTO over 20 years ago, the UIA is a great organization to join for all inventors. The driving force behind the UIA is the UIA’s Executive Director, Mark Reyland. Mark is a serial entrepreneur with a long career in product development and inventing stemming back to his early days in the United States Air Force and National Security Agency.
Since joining the UIA, Mark has worked tirelessly and passionately for the benefit of the inventor community. Mark’s commitment to helping inventors leads to a regular 60 to 80 hour work week, spending upwards of 200 days a year traveling between inventor clubs, Washington DC (where he leads the UIA effort to strengthen inventor protection legislation and enforcement), meetings and trade shows.
Through Mark’s leadership, the UIA has developed a supportive program for 100+ UIA certified inventor clubs around the country where real inventors meet monthly. The UIA supplies the clubs with professional speakers as well as Skype kits to allow speakers to present long distance. In addition, Mark travels to over 30 clubs each year to personally thank the club leadership and to educate on available tools and efforts taking place on their behalf at the national level.
The UIA has also developed a strong national trade show support program offering Inventor Showcase and educational programs at industry trade shows. The UIA hosts the National Hardware Show’s Inventor Spotlight Pavilion, PGA’s Merchandise Show and the International Housewares Show – with several more national tradeshows on tap for 2013.
InventionHome is proud to support such a fine organization and I am personally honored to continue serving on the UIA Board.