LaWanda S. Houston

Associate / Detroit Metro Office

LaWanda Houston combines an innate curiosity of how things work with a deep appreciation for and fascination with the rule of law to provide outstanding patent prosecution services for clients. Her engineering background means she understands and relates to the unique challenges engineers and inventors face as they bring their creations to market.

Her practice focuses on emerging technologies. She has a particular interest in artificial intelligence, robotics, gaming and e-commerce. She has represented clients in a variety of industries, including automotive, aviation, computer networks and telecommunications.

She has considerable experience in every phase of the patent prosecution process, including drafting provisional and non-provisional patent applications and responding to all types of United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) and foreign patent office-issued communications. As a former USPTO Patent Examiner, she is keenly aware of the patent process and has a firsthand appreciation for well-prepared applications.

LaWanda is skilled at developing effective portfolio strategies that help inventors maximize and protect the value of their creations. She is fascinated by the myriad of challenges her clients face and frames her practice through a lens of how best to achieve business goals.

LaWanda’s career is focused on solving problems in a broad range of settings for a wide variety of clients. She began her legal career at Harness IP and has worked at other IP firms across the country.

She previously worked as a patent examiner at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), learning firsthand the value of meticulous patent preparation and prosecution. At the USPTO, her work focused on multiplexing network communication systems, including wired and wireless networks, data packaging, routers, switches, applications, and related databases.

Prior to law school, she was a project engineer at General Motors. There, she led teams that integrated various electronic components and systems into production and helped organize engineers to develop and perform bench verification and vehicle-level validation. A natural problem solver, she diagnosed and analyzed problems associated with JD Power complaints for Saturn cars and implemented issue resolution strategies for those vehicles. She also has experience performing federal vehicle compliance tests during all stages of product development.



LaWanda is an enthusiastic traveler and the mother of two young sons


J.D., University of Notre Dame Law School (2004)

B.S., Electrical Engineering, cum laude, Prairie View A&M University (1996)



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U.S. Patent and Trademark Office