Lightner was recognized for his commitment in 2017 to providing quality and ongoing pro bono assistance to a multitude of indigent inventors across Georgia. These inventors would otherwise lack access to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and to any feasible avenues to protect their valuable inventions.
Overseen by the USPTO and operated through Georgia Lawyers for the Arts, Georgia PATENTS fills this gap by connecting low-income inventors with volunteer patent prosecution attorneys. Lightner’s efforts were highlighted as having contributed significantly to the program’s success since its inception in 2015.
For his leadership assisting financially under-resourced inventors, Lightner was also honored in May by the USPTO with its 2017 “Patent Pro Bono Achievement Certificate.”