Thomas O’Keefe - IP Counseling & Transactions attorney - Nixon Peabody LLP

Thomas O’Keefe

Tom O’Keefe advises clients on a variety of intellectual property matters, including IP protection and management, licensing efforts, and overall commercialization strategies. Tom’s prior roles—in the technology transfer office of a preeminent US research university and as product counsel for a leading content delivery network and cybersecurity firm—afforded him unique insights into the nuances of generating, protecting, and commercializing technologies, and he leverages this experience to benefit clients.

What do you focus on?

I am experienced with negotiating and advising on commercial contracts and strategic technology transactions, including joint development opportunities, partnerships, incoming and outgoing licenses, and consulting and distribution arrangements with partners and vendors ranging from startups to multi-billion-dollar public companies. My experience negotiating patent licenses corresponds to a broad array of technologies, including network coding advancements, piezoelectric fiber improvements, algorithms for medical imaging applications, and standard-essential digital signal processing technologies. Additionally, I have more than ten years’ experience drafting and negotiating SaaS agreements and software and data licenses.

My prior in-house experience exposed me to myriad issues that accompany product development and commercialization and allowed me to gain valuable practical knowledge that I strategically leverage to address complex IP matters. In addition to guiding clients with respect to IP protection matters, I have extensively advised clients (particularly software and SaaS providers) regarding privacy and other regulatory issues, data use, the utilization of open source code, and best practices for designing and implementing programs to address issues involving user-generated content. Perhaps most importantly, my engineering background—as well as my extensive experience evaluating different types of technologies—allow me to quickly assimilate technical details and work closely with engineers and product development personnel to address specific issues and, more generally, refine and optimize client procedures for safeguarding innovation and go-to-market strategies.

What do you see on the horizon?

As consumers and regulators become increasingly concerned with privacy issues and matters involving the use and management of user-generated content, SaaS and platform companies (as well as other technology firms) will need to fortify their product development initiatives with increasingly robust privacy-by-design principles, implement effective policies and procedures for addressing user content, and continually revisit these internal guidelines and procedures to account for evolving requirements.

New associations

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly | October 28, 2021

This roundup of notable legal moves includes the arrival of Boston Intellectual Property counsel Tom O’Keefe to the firm, following several years serving as senior counsel at Akamai Technologies.

Wake up call

Bloomberg Law | October 21, 2021

This roundup of notable legal news and moves includes the arrival of Boston Intellectual Property counsel Tom O’Keefe to the firm, following several years serving as senior counsel at Akamai Technologies.


Thomas O'Keefe



Phone: 617-345-6163

Fax: 907-802-4234

Brooklyn Law School, J.D.

Yale School of Management, MBA

Tufts University, M.E., Bioengineering

Georgetown University, B.S.


New York

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