Jon O. Nelson

Jon O. Nelson


Chicago, IL

Main: 312.463.5000 Fax: 312.463.5001


Jon has practiced in the Chicago office of Banner Witcoff for more than 35 years. Throughout that time he has been involved in the procurement of patents, trademarks and copyrights, advisory counseling, opinion preparation, contract negotiation and preparation, and extensive litigation related to patents, trademarks and copyrights. Jon is known for his innovative approach to intellectual property problems.

He has served as lead trial counsel in jury and bench trials in a number of cases relating to such diverse matters as computer chips, biotechnology, and automotive repair equipment. He has presented oral arguments before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and before Appellate and District Courts throughout the United States. Jon has assisted clients with respect to foreign patent litigation and has extensive experience before the International Trade Commission. He has spoken at numerous conferences and seminars.

Jon earned a Bachelor of Science in Metallurgical Engineering from Purdue University, a Masters of Science in Metallurgical Engineering from the University of Illinois and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois. He is admitted to practice before the Bars of the State of Illinois, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, numerous Federal District and United States Appellate Courts and the Supreme Court. He is licensed to practice before the Patent Office and the International Trade Commission.

Jon is a co-founder and was an officer of the Northwestern University/Evanston Research Park in Evanston, Illinois, and was Chairman of the Board of the Technology Innovation Center, Inc., in Evanston, Illinois, a small business incubator that houses multiple technology oriented companies.

Jon was elected by the Illinois State Bar Association Board of Governors to the 2016 Class of Distinguished Counsellors. This title is conferred annually upon ISBA members who are completing their 50th year of practice. He is listed in Euromoney's "Guide to the World's Leading Patent Law Practitioners," and "Guide to the World's Leading Trademark Law Practitioners," and named one of the "World's Leading IP Strategists" by Intellectual Asset Management magazine. Jon was also featured in Chicago's Legal Leaders "Top Rated Lawyers," and was named to the 2005-2020 Illinois Super Lawyers lists, which represent the top 5 percent of attorneys in each state. Jon was named to 2010-2022 Best Lawyers lists. Best Lawyers is considered the oldest and one of the most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession. Jon is a member of the Leading Lawyers Network. Based upon peer nominations and approval by the network's Advisory Board, only the top lawyers are nominated and eligible for membership in the Leading Lawyers Network.

Jon is a co-author of the Thomson Reuters published book “Intellectual Property Law 2012: Top Lawyers on Trends and Key Strategies for the Upcoming Year,” and the Aspatore published book “Intellectual Property Law 2010: Top Lawyers on Trends and Key Strategies for the Upcoming Year.”

Jon served as an alderman in Evanston, Illinois, from 1977 to 1993; and is a founding Director of First Bank and Trust of Evanston in Evanston, Illinois.

  • Purdue University
    1961, B.S., Chemical Engineering
  • University of Illinois
    1963, M.S., Chemical Engineering
    1966, J.D.

Bar Admissions

  • 1966, Illinois
  • 1985, Massachusetts

Court Admissions

  • Supreme Court of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Supreme Court

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