Main content

Timothy R. Holbrook

Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law

Areas of Expertise

Intellectual Property, International Patent Law, Patent Litigation, Patent Law, Property Law, Trademark Law and Policy


International Patent Law, Patent Law, Patent Litigation, Property Law, Trademark Law and Policy,


Timothy R. Holbrook, Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law, is an internationally recognized patent law scholar. He has authored over forty publications and has given over one hundred presentations around the world on patent law. His recent work has explored the impact of 3D printing on patent law, the extraterritorial reach of US patent law, and the function of patent disclosures. He frequently comments on issues of intellectual property law, appearing in various media, including CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fortune, Scientific American, and Science. Holbrook's work has been cited in briefs before the US Supreme Court, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (the court that hears all appeals in the US arising under the patent laws), and various district courts. The Federal Circuit and district courts have cited his work favorably. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute (ALI) and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.

Holbrook has also been an advocate for the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community. His commentary and op-eds have appeared in various outlets, including CNN, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, and Huffington Post. He has worked to advance the rights of the LGBT community. He previously served on the boards of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund and the Stonewall Bar Association of Georgia. He was co-counsel for former National Football League players on briefs before the US Supreme Court advocating for marriage equality.

Holbrook graduated summa cum laude and as valedictorian from North Carolina State University, earning a BS in chemical engineering with a life sciences concentration. He received his JD from Yale Law School, where he served as a lead editor and publications director of the Yale Journal on Regulation. After law school, he clerked for the Honorable Glenn L. Archer Jr. of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Following his clerkship, Holbrook worked in Budapest, Hungary, with the Hungarian patent law firm Danubia. Upon his return to the United States, he associated with the Washington, DC, law firm of Wiley, Rein & Fielding (now Wiley Rein), where his practice focused on patent and appellate litigation.

Holbrook's work appears in a variety of journals, most recently including Vanderbilt Law Review, NotreDame Law Review, Iowa Law Review, Emory Law Journal, William & Mary Law Review, and Minnesota Law Review. He is the co-author of Patent Litigation and Strategy (5th ed.) with Judge Kimberly A. Moore of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and John Murphy of BakerHostetler.

Before joining the Emory faculty, Holbrook was a tenured professor at the Chicago-Kent College of Law. He served as Edwin A. Heafey Jr. Visiting Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and also has taught as a visiting professor at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law and Washington University School of Law in St. Louis. He was a scholar-in-residence at the Center for Media and Communication Studies at the Central European University (CEU) (Budapest, Hungary) and served as a visiting professor in CEU's Legal Studies Department. He served as Emory Law's associate dean of faculty from 2012 until 2015. Holbrook served as the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs for Emory University from 2018-2022. In that position he oversaw activities that supported faculty recruitment, retention, and success at the university level. During his service as vice provost, he developed various mechanisms to support faculty during the COVID-19 pandemic.

While in Chicago, Holbrook was a founder and the program chair for the Richard Linn Inn of Court. Upon arriving in Atlanta, he helped found the Atlanta Intellectual Property Inn of Court, serving as its first president. For his work with the Inns of Court, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal from the Linn Inn Alliance of Intellectual Property American Inns of Court. He also has served as an expert or consultant in a variety of patent litigation cases in the United States and abroad.

In recognition of his teaching and work on inclusion, he has been awarded the Emory Williams Distinguished Teaching Award, the Chesnut LGBT Person of the Year Award at Emory University, the Outstanding Service to the Community Award by the Stonewall Bar Association, the Friends in the Faculty Award from the Division of Campus Life at Emory, and the Professor of the Year by Emory's Black Law Students Association.

Education: JD, Yale Law School; BS, Chemical Engineering, North Carolina State University (summa cum laude)