Richard L. Thurston, Ph.D.

Of Counsel

  • Richard L. Thurston, Ph.D.
  • Phone: +1 212 471 1873
    Fax: +1 212 214 0893

    Import to Address Book

  • Duane Morris LLP
    1540 Broadway
    New York, NY 10036-4086
  • Duane Morris & Selvam Taiwan
    Foreign Legal Affairs Law Firm
    13F., No. 1, SongGao Road
    Xinyi District
    Taipei City 11073, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Chinese Translation

Richard L. Thurston, Ph.D. practices in the area of intellectual property law. Prior to joining Duane Morris, Dr. Thurston was Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd., where he was also Chief Proprietary Information Officer (Trade Secrets) and Corporate Compliance Officer. Dr. Thurston has experience with corporate governance and regulatory compliance; M&A; litigation; and intellectual capital management, including intellectual property and the protection of trade secrets. He also has experience with joint ventures and venture capital investments, international trade and investment, and non-legal Asia-Pacific strategic planning.

Dr. Thurston is a 1980 graduate of Rutgers University School of Law—Camden. He also holds an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia and is a cum laude graduate of Alma College. He is fluent in Mandarin.

Areas of Practice

  • Intellectual Property Law
  • Trade Secrets
  • Intellectual Capital Management
  • Corporate Governance and Regulatory Compliance
  • International Trade and Investment
  • Asia-Pacific Strategic Planning and Development


  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of International Trade


  • Rutgers School of Law - Camden, J.D., 1980
  • University of Virginia, Ph.D., 1979
  • University of Virginia, M.A., 1973
  • Alma College, B.A., cum laude, 1973


  • Duane Morris LLP
    - Of Counsel, 2015-present
    - Associate, 1980-1984
  • Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    - Senior Vice President and General Counsel, 2002-2014
  • Graduate Institute of Technology Law, National ChiaoTung University, HsinChu, Taiwan
    - Adjunct Law Professor, 2002-present
  • School of Law, Soochow University, Taipei, Taiwan
    - Adjunct Law Professor, 2002-present
  • National Cheng Chih University, Taipei
    - Adjunct Professor, 2009
  • Southern Methodist University School of Law, Dallas
    - Adjunct Law Professor, 2000-2001
  • Kelt Capital Ventures, Dallas
    - Co-Founder, 2001
  • Haynes and Boone LLP
    - Senior Partner, 1996-2001
  • University of Texas at Dallas, Graduate School of Business Administration
    - Lecturer, "Modern Chinese Economic History (1800-1980's)," 1985-1986; "Japanese Business Practices," Fall 1992; and "Business Basics of Entrepreneurism," Summers of 2000 and 2001
  • Dallas-Fort Worth School of Law (now known as Texas A&M University School of Law)
    - Lecturer on trade and investment law, Fall semesters, 1990-1992

Honors and Awards

  • Named to Intellectual Asset Magazine's IAM Strategy 300 – The World's Leading Intellectual Property Strategists, 2015-2018

  • ILO Asia-Pacific General Counsel of the Year, 2013
  • Taiwan Intellectual Property Counsel of the year, 2010
  • Adviser to Republic of China (ROC) Intellectual Property Office, 2002-2008
  • AsiaLaw Outstanding In-House Counsel Award, Taiwan Counsel of the Year, 2006 and 2007
  • Adviser to ROC Ministry of Economic Affairs on Free Trade Agreement Negotiations with the U.S., 2006-2007
  • Adviser to the ROC Ministry of Justice on Draft Legislation Establishing an Special Intellectual Property Court in Taiwan, 2004-2006
  • Member Taiwan, ROC APEC Delegation (Hanoi), 2006
  • Editor of the English Translation of the ROC Civil Code of Procedure
  • Asia Legal Business' Top 25 In-House Counsel, Asia Pacific, 2003
  • Appointed by U.S. Department of Commerce (Clinton Administration) as a member of the U.S. – People's Republic of China Civil Technology Committee, 1999-2001
  • Technology Business Council, Richardson, Texas, Telecom Corridor
    - Volunteer of the Year, 2000

Civic and Charitable Activities

  • International IP Commercialization Council
    - Member, Executive Advisory Committee, 2017-present
  • Lex Mundi
    - Advisory Board, 2011-present
  • International In-House Counsel Journal
    - Editorial Board, 2010-present
  • Liberty Masonic Lodge, Taipei, Taiwan
    - Member, 2008-present
  • Rotarian, Rotary Club International
  • Rotary Club of HsinChu Southeast, 2001-present
    - Paul Harris Fellow, 2005-present
  • HsinChu International Community Association
    - Co-founder and Vice President
  • Greater Dallas Chamber of Commerce
    - Asia Advisory Council, Co-Chair, 1999-2001
    - International Advisory Council, 1998-2001
  • Richardson Chamber of Commerce
    - Co-Chair, International Committee, 1999-2001
  • ATAC Swim Club
    - Member of Board of Directors, 1999-2001
  • Richardson Symphony Orchestra
    - Board of Directors, 2000-2001
  • Richardson YMCA
    - Board of Directors, 1999-2001

Selected Publications

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, "Exploring US-China Relations, Chipmakers & The Race to Innovate," IP Dealmakers Forum, New York City, December 7, 2021
  • Special Guest Speaker, "The US - China Technology Rivalry:The IP Quagmire," China and the World Forum, Webinar, October 13, 2021
  • "Chips and Blocks—How TSMC Mastered the Geopolitics of Chipmaking," The Economist Babbage Podcast, May 11, 2021
  • "Shanghai Pujiang Intellectual Property International Cloud Forum 2021 & Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta Intellectual Property Cooperation Conference," Zhangjiang Science City, April 16, 2021
  • "Trade Secrets-What Do You Need to Know?," SCLA Academy, Zoom Meeting, February 6, 2021

  • "Rule of Law," SCLA 2020 Global Legal Leaders' Dialogue, Webinar, December 31, 2020
  • "Fireside Chat," Needham & Company Annual SEMICON West Virtual Event, July 20, 2020
  • "Future of Trade Secret Systems: Addressing Innovation Gaps and Opportunities Derived From Emerging Technologies," WIPO Symposium on Trade Secrets and Innovation, Geneva, Switzerland, November 25 and 26, 2019
  • "Handling Trade Secret Information During the Procedures before Judiciaries," WIPO Symposium on Trade Secrets and Innovation, Geneva, Switzerland, November 25 and 26, 2019
  • Meeting the Threat To Americas Economic Future:US IP and Innovation Policy, International IP Commercialization Council - USA Society, Washington, D.C., May 9, 2018

  • "The Orphaned Child: Trade Secrets as a Much Neglected Corporate Asset," American Chambe of Commerce in Taipei, March 03, 2017
  • "China's Membership in the World Trade Organization: The Accession Journey," ABA, Section of International Law and Practice, Washington, D.C., May 1, 1997
  • "The Two Koreas and Their Asian Neighbors," 1997 SMU-Dallas Forum on Asian Affairs, symposium on the Two Koreas and the U.S., Dallas, March 21, 1997
  • "Understanding Business Infrastructure in Japan and the Pacific Rim," MIT Distance Education Seminar, Cambridge, Mass., March 27, 1997
  • "Leveraging Technologies and Intellectual Property Into Competitive Advantage in the 21st Century; An Overview of an Evolutionary, Synergistic Process," CAEI Symposium on The Future of the Internet and Multimedia, Infomart, Dallas, December 11, 1996
  • "Practical Aspects of Joint Ventures in Asia," The Inter-Pacific Bar Association, Dallas, November 22, 1996
  • "Fundamental Components of an International Joint Venture Agreement, Doing Business Worldwide, the Third Annual Midwest International Law Forum Goes West." Scottsdale, Arizona, November 11, 1996
  • "The U.S.-Japan Economic Partnership." Looking Ahead to the 21st Century: Economic Opportunities for America in Northeast Asia, Asia Society, Dallas, October 7, 1996
  • "Recent Intellectual Property Developments in the Pacific Rim," 10th Annual Computer and Information Law Institute. Las Colinas, Texas, September 20, 1996
  • "Investment in China: A Historical Perspective." Thinking About China: Lessons from Success and Failures, MIT International Science and Technology Initiative, Cambridge, Mass., October 24, 1995
  • "Texas Instruments Experiences in Asia." Global Partnerships and Strategic Alliances: Institute of International Business, Saint Louis University, Saint Louis, November 10, 1995
  • "Virtual Techno-Alliances: A Framework for Future U.S./Japan Technology Relationships," International Law and Finance Institute for Corporate Counsel, Washington, D.C., February 20, 1994
  • "Historical Roots and Emerging Similarities Between the Commercial Legal Regimes of Taiwan and Mainland China," and "Taiwan and Greater China: Recent Trends in the Semiconductor Market," 17th Annual Business Conference of the US-ROC Business Council, Hilton Head, S.C., September 23, 1993
  • "Protecting Intellectual Property Rights and Interests in Technology Transfers to Strategic Relationships in the Pacific Rim: China, Korea and Japan," 7th Annual Computer and Information Technology Law Institute, university of Texas School of Law, Dallas, September 24, 1993
  • "Major Issues Concerning Technology Transfer to Foreign Operations Operating in the United States," National Law Institute, Dallas, March 26, 1992
  • "Country Risk Analysis: Intellectual Property and Fair Trade Regimes in the Asia-Pacific Region," Annual Spring Meeting, International Law Section, American Bar Association, New York, April 9, 1992
  • "Trade and Law Reform, A Chinese Historical Perspective." American Society of International Law, Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C., April 1991
  • "The Long March Back: Trade and Investment Opportunities in the People's Republic of China." American Bar Association Section on International Law and Practice, Annual Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C. April, 1991
  • Moderator, "The Soviet Far East--New Trade and Investment Opportunities," American Bar Association Section on International Law and Practice, Annual Fall Meeting, Seattle, Washington, October 24, 1991
  • "A Pragmatic Approach to Doing Business in Japan." Dallas Bar Association, September 1990
  • "Are we on a Collision Course? A review of Major Issues confronting Japanese-American Relations." Presented at MY CLUB (a private forum of Japanese government and business leaders), Tokyo, Japan, April 1989
  • "Doing Business in China." U.S. Department of Commerce and the Joint Center for China-U.S. Management Studies, University of Texas at Dallas, Fall, 1985
  • "Legal Aspects of the ETC Act," Export Conference sponsored by the U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration, Philadelphia, 1983
  • "A New Look at China: Are the Opportunities Really There?," International Business Forum, Philadelphia, 1983
  • Symposium on the History of the Republic of China, Taipei, Taiwan, August 1981, at the invitation of the Government of the Republic of China