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P1William Millen founded what became Millen White Zelano & Branigan, P.C. along with his friend and neighbor John Leslie White. He received a J.D. from George Washington University Law School and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Prior to joining the firm, he worked at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for ten years. In his earlier career, he was trained as a research chemical engineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and worked on a variety of projects in the 1950s, from the extraction of bitter components of orange juice to formulating phenolic modified sand molds for a steel foundry.

As a patent attorney, Mr. Millen had a particular expertise in chemical technologies such as rubbery polymers and specialty acrylics and has been involved in many pharmaceutical areas from anti-fertility drugs to nose drops. He also worked extensively on oil refinery processes as well as cryogenic separations since 1960.

Mr. Millen always believed that a law firm succeeds not only because of the skill and intellect of its lawyers but also because the Attorneys are decent human beings who know how to work together as a team.

He founded the firm on those principles and while the technology associated with the practice of patent law continues to change, the beliefs and traditions set forth by Mr. William Millen continues on at the law firm of Millen White Zelano & Branigan, P.C.


p2MWZB dates back to 1969, when John Leslie White co-founded the firm with I. William Millen. Prior to becoming a lawyer, he was a naval officer during WWII and a pharmaceutical chemist at the UpJohn Company. He received a J.D. with honors from George Washington University Law School, a B.A. in Chemistry and an M.S. in Organic Chemistry from Kalamazoo College in Michigan.

Mr. White was a Professorial Lecturer in Law at the George Washington University National Law Center, and a seminar lecturer on chemical patent practice for more than 26 years.

He authored the study text “Chemical Patent Practice” which has been employed for over 25 years as both a teaching and research tool by patent practitioners worldwide. The text continues to be edited and republished by MWZB Directors to carry on John Leslie White’s legacy as co-founder, educator and colleague. John White practiced law for more than 50 years before his death, building a reputation as a wise and formidable lawyer.


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