August 21, 2004 -  May Hall, St. Louis Science Center, St. Louis, MO


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Topic Speaker




Check-In, View display tables and network with other inventors



Welcome & VIP Introductions

A brief welcome, a description of the Illinois Innovators & Inventors and how to contact them and when they meet, and introduction of the emcee.

Wayne Highley,

Pres. Illinois Innovators and Inventors, Inc.

0945-1000 Overview of the Program, Welcome Remarks The managing attorney of a virtual law firm specializing in patent, trademark and copyright law and based in Metro East is our Master of Ceremonies.  He will describe the format for the program and the speakers and how the program will proceed.  

Bruce "Dave Letterman" Burdick, Esq.   Master of Ceremonies

Owner, Founder and Managing Attorney of Burdick Law Firm, Alton, IL and webmaster for www.burdlaw.com intellectual property law portal




Success Story I - TORSION TAMER(r) roll tarp accessory.  A story of the journey of two inventors through the early stages of development, patenting  and marketing, of being pressured to sell out their idea cheaply and how they have persevered to get it to market.  This sets the stage for all that is to follow in the program.  These two inventors did it right and are starting to see some light at the end of the tunnel. 

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  Henry Leischner and Patrick Cagle


Honeypoint, LLC, Arenzville, IL



Beginning the Process - Don't Get Scammed, How to Evaluate Your Invention, Who to Contact  As president of the Inventors Association of St. Louis, Robert Scheinkman has seen literally hundreds of inventors come to his meetings knowing little or nothing about what to do with their ideas.  He has heard the stories of many an inventor who has been "scammed" by one of the invention promoters in a slick program designed to separate the enthusiastic inventor from his hard earned money but do little of real value for the inventor toward generating income.  Bob will tell you who to avoid and who can really help you.  He will tell you how to make an initial evaluation of your invention and who can help you.  He will tell you who to contact to start the process the right way and when to do it.  He is not a Patent Attorney, but he has a world of practical knowledge for inventors.  Miss this important advice and it could cost you thousands of dollars, hours of frustration, and the ultimate commercial failure of your invention.

Robert Scheinkman

President, Inventors Association of St. Louis.



PTDL - Patent & Trademark Depositary Library - a resource for inventors  The director of the Patent Depositary Library at the Illinois State Library in Springfield, Illinois is coming to Cardinal world (St. Louis) to help Midwest inventors understand what the Patent Depositary Libraries have to offer them and how they can take advantage of and best utilize those services.

Margaret Collins

Director, Illinois State Library Patent & Trademark Depositary Library



What if your idea is not patentable?  How can you protect it? One of the top trademark and copyright lawyers in St. Louis will discuss how to protect the invention or business that is not patentable, but yet creative and new enough to be of commercial potential.   Carol will discuss some of the other forms of protection such a copyrights, trademarks, trade dress, franchising, know how, trade secrets, marketing services, trade associations, QVC and HSN, etc.

Carol Hamilton, Esq.

Partner at Polster, Lieder, Woodruff & Lucchesi, L.C. of Creve Coeur, MO



If it appears to be patentable, how can you protect it? Provisional patent applications, Patent Office process.  A chemical patent lawyer will be interviewed to find out what happens when a new inventor first approaches a patent lawyer, what the patent lawyer typically charges, what options are open to the patent attorney.  From this you will find that patent attorneys are real people and are there to help you and are probably the key ingredient to your successful commercialization of your invention, because they are experts at protecting your ideas so others cannot use it without your permission.  A very vital segment of the program for inventors.


Linda Lewis, Esq.

Greensfelder, Hempker & Gale, 10th Fl.,  Equitable Center, St. Louis, MO



Success Story 2 Exertron

An inventor who has made it successfully through the initial stages and has obtained his second level financing will be our guest to be interviewed about how he did it and what comes next and what he might have done differently.  He has been there, done that and lived to tell about it as far as a beginning inventor trying to succeed.

Robert Kissel

Founder & CEO



Foreign Rights and Enforcement of Rights, PCT, Madrid Protocol For this segment, we assume the inventor has had success, perhaps on the level of Exertron and Robert Kissel, or a similar company, but now come the copycats, the need to enforce your rights, the possibility of exporting the product, the wonder of how to protect the successes and prepare for more.  Two of the top patent attorneys in the country will be interviewed  about what can be done in enforcement and in international protection.  One is a managing partner of the St. Louis branch office of one of the nation's largest and foremost patent firms, and the other is the main author of arguably the foremost treatise on Patent Litigation.  Both are Adjunct Professors of Patent Law at Washington University in St. Louis, which has one of the top patent law curriculums in the country.  These two gentlemen will give you, as an inventor, the comfort of knowing that if the need arises there are attorneys out there who can go, and have gone successfully,  toe-to-toe with the largest companies in the world fighting in defense of you, the inventor.

 speaking on protection of foreign rights will be

Bryan Wheelock, Principal, Harness Dickey, St. Louis, MO


speaking on enforcement of rights will be

Gregory Upchurch

Of Counsel, Hushch & Eppenberger Clayton, MO





Success Story 3 - The pinnacle of success in patents:  Don Weder, Chairman of the Board, President and Founder of  Highland Supply Corporation  in nearby Highland, Illinois, the most prolific inventor in history  Don is one of the most successful inventors in the world, and has hundreds of patents.  He has used the patent system to its fullest extent to have international success that literally dominates an entire industry, the floral supply industry.  Don will tell how he got started and how he kept going to achieve such incredible success and give his advice to starting inventors.  His son Andrew Weder had the distinction at one time of being the youngest patentee in history.

Don Weder and/or Andrew Weder

CANCELED Panel Discussion, Questions and Summary  Your chance to get your questions answered by some of the worlds' foremost experts on how to succeed with inventions. Panel of speakers



 Presentation of 1st Annual Midwest Inventor of the Year Award and Special Lifetime Achievement Award



Free Admission to Visit Science Center exhibits on Your Own

OMNIMAX and Planetarium shows are available at additional cost.  We will end the conference just prior to the start of the Harry Potter OMNIMAX show. The science center has its fabulous, not-to-be-missed, exhibit SPACE open for viewing this day.  For teachers, the Center has a special educational event from 4-7PM.  This is one of the world's great science centers, and this is your chance to see as much of it as you can.  You will be able to see enough to want to come back for more.


A Public Education Program of


c/o Bruce Burdick, 3656 Western Ave., Alton, IL 62002



( For details, telephone Mr. Wayne Highley at 618-398-4826 or Mr. Bruce Burdick at 618-462-3450