Nominee: Sabra-Anne Rachel Truesdale
Associate General Counsel, Intellectual Property (IP)
UC Berkeley School of Law
In 2015, Sabra-Anne Truesdale came to Western Digital (WD) from a firm and had no full-time in-house experience - she suddenly had attorneys reporting to her who had been at the company far longer - but was able to seamlessly transition into WD by participating in various programs promoting female inventors and employee well-being.
Truesdale is more than legal counsel at the company. In late 2019, WD began analyzing its patent program to determine if the percentage of female inventors matched the percentage of female technical staff at the company. Just as a gender gap exists in the STEM workforce, a gender gap also exists in patenting activity. So Truesdale took action to ensure fair representation within WD, noting that “We want women proportionately represented. If they’re 20% of the technical staff, then they should be 20% of the inventors. Their names should be on patents.”