Mr. Smits has over 20 years of experience in intellectual property litigation and transactional practice, involving patents, trademarks, trade secrets, copyright and other technology law related issues. Over the course of his career, he practiced in Los Angeles with Robbins, Berliner & Carson, which became the Intellectual Property Section of Fulbright & Jaworski in LA, before returning to Austin in 1998, initially joining the IP Section of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld.
Following his time at Akin, Gump, Mr. Smits worked at several start-up companies doing both legal and technical work before joining National Instruments in 2010, where to this day he is the head of their IP section as Senior IP Counsel at NI. During his stay at NI, the IP litigation and transactional practices have made major improvements in efficiency, cost savings and performance.
Mr. Smits started his career as a product engineer with Texas Instruments in Dallas, first earning a BSEE from his home state’s Michigan State University, along with an MBA in Engineering Management during his time at TI, before moving to Austin to secure his law degree from the University of Texas School of Law. He is licensed with the State Bar of Texas and the United States Patent Bar.
Away from work, he enjoys travel, languages, reading, sports, gambling, craft beer, and supporting animal-related causes, both personally and through various charities.
Languages spoken: Latvian
11500 North Mopac Expwy, Building B
Austin, TX, 78759