Roderick McKelvie

Roderick R. McKelvie

Senior Counsel
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Covington & Burling LLP
One CityCenter
850 Tenth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001-4956
Tel: +1 202 662 5195
Fax: +1 202 778 5195



  • University of Pennsylvania Law School, J.D., 1973
  • Harvard University, B.A., 1968

Judicial Clerkship

  • Hon. Caleb R. Layton III, U.S. District Court, District of Delaware, 1973-1974

Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia

Rod McKelvie advises clients on litigation strategies in patent infringement and related disputes. At Covington he draws on his experience as a U.S. District Court Judge, where for more than 10 years he managed, tried and resolved hundreds of cases, as well as his experience for 30 years as an appellate and trial lawyer.

Representative Matters

  • Representing a steel manufacturer sued for patent infringement and obtaining a jury verdict of no infringement and that the asserted claims are invalid.
  • Representing the University of Pittsburgh in an appeal to the Federal Circuit and obtaining a reversal of a trial court decision that had dismissed its patent infringement case.
  • Representing an industrial services client sued for infringement and obtaining from the plaintiff a covenant not to sue the client and a dismissal of the case.
  • Consulting with various lawyers and clients on the strengths and weaknesses of positions being asserted by or against them in patent infringement and related litigations.

Previous Experience

  • United States District Court for the District of Delaware, Judge (1992-2002)

Honors and Rankings

  • The Best Lawyers in America for Intellectual Property (2005-2015)
  • Chambers USA - America's Leading Business Lawyers for Intellectual Property (2010-2014)
  • Washington DC Super Lawyers, Intellectual Property Litigation (2007-2012, 2014-2015)
  • IAM Patent 1000 - The World’s Leading Patent Practitioners (2015)
  • Who's Who Legal, Patents (2015)
  • Legal 500 US, Recognized for Patent Litigation: Full Coverage (2010, 2014)
  • Guide to the World's Leading Patent Law Practitioners (2010)
  • International Who's Who of Business Lawyers for Patent (2005-2010)
  • The Washingtonian (December 2004, December 2007, December 2009, December 2011, December 2013): named one of the top intellectual property lawyers in Washington.

Memberships and Affiliations

  • George Washington University School of Law, Professorial Lecturer in Law, teaching the school’s course in Patent Enforcement
  • Richard S. Rodney Inn of Court, former President
  • Delaware Bankruptcy Inn of Court, former President and Founding Member
  • Giles S. Rich American Inn of Court, former President
  • National Academies' Committee on Intellectual Property Rights in Genomic and Protein Related Inventions, Co-Chair
  • Member of the Board of Directors of the International Judicial Academy
  • Member of the Board of Governors of the Sedona Conference

Publications and Speeches

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