10 Questions: Sherry Roberg-Perez, Ph. D.


Sherry Roberg-Perez is a partner in the intellectual property and technology litigation group at Robins Kaplan. In addition to her law degree, Dr. Roberg-Perez earned her Ph.D. in molecular biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She discusses how science and the law overlap in her practice, and what she does outside of work.

1. In addition to your law practice, you have a background in molecular biology. What led you to pivot to a career in law?

I wanted my day-to-day work to have real world impact. That tends to be the exception rather than the rule in academic science. As a patent litigator, I’m keenly aware that no one starts a patent fight unless the underlying technology has made a difference.

2. How does your background in science help you in your law practice?

Graduate and postdoctoral work honed not only my analytical thinking but also allowed me to develop mental endurance and a high tolerance for frustration.  All three of those skills have come in handy at times.

3. What excites you most about your work?

Helping to ensure that groundbreaking technology stays on the market and is accessible to people who need it.

4. What was your Ph. D. thesis about?

It was a developmental molecular neurobiology thesis that examined how a part of the Drosophila brain develops.

5. You are very active in pro bono work, can you tell us more about that?

Nationally, we’ve seen an increase in anti-transgender legislation, including efforts to bar medically necessary care, and to try to restrict access to things most of us take for granted. The ability to use a pronoun that reflects who we are, regardless of where we are.  Knowing that our kids can go to school and find a restroom, or play a sport, or find a book on a library shelf that reflects who they are. My most recent pro bono work has focused on helping to ensure that transgender individuals can receive the medical care that they need.

6. In your LinkedIn bio, you wrote, “Life is too short to withdraw from the fray,” why is that phrase meaningful to you?

Why be a spectator when you can be in the mix?

7. If you weren’t a lawyer, what would you be doing?

An alternative path for me was through Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service. I’d like to think I could have had a career as an intelligence analyst. A path that I would like to think is still open for me, in retirement, is pit bull rescue.

8. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Find people you can laugh with.

9. What book are you reading right now and what show are you currently streaming?

I just started Barbara Kingsolver’s Demon Copperhead. And I am partway through the first season of Succession.

10. Complete this sentence, everybody who knows me knows I love…

Shea and Laurence, my dogs.


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