Born in 1908 in Szombathely, Hungary, Ottó Somorjay graduated with Dip. Mech. Eng. at the József Nádor Technical University, Budapest, in 1934. After working for some years as an engineer he entered the Patent Attorney Office of the late Aurél Kolos as a junior clerk in 1938. He passed his patent attorney examination in 1942 and following this he started with his private practice. After military service in World War II he continued working as a patent attorney until 1950 when his private practice had to be discontinued. Then he entered the state owned Patentbureau Danubia where he worked as a patent attorney until his retirement. As from the establishment of Gödölle, Kékes, Mészáros & Szabó Patent and Trademark Attorneys in 1990, Mr. Somorjay was a consultant with this office until his death. He provided invaluable help in the starting phase of our office.
In addition to his professional career, Ottó Somorjay made a significant impact on the teaching of industrial property law in Hungary. He was lecturer in courses for industrial property rights for many years and was a member of the Examination Board for Patent Attorneys for a long time. He is author of various publications concerning patent rights. He was a member of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI) and a council member of the Hungarian Group of AIPPI. He was a member of the Hungarian Association for the Protection of Industrial Property and Copyright (MIE) as well as the Hungarian Chamber of Patent Attorneys.
Ottó Somorjay was a Honorary Member of the Hungarian Group of AIPPI. In 1980 he was given the Industrial Property Medal by MIE. In 1996 Ottó Somorjay was awarded the Gold Medal of the World Intellectual Property Organization by Dr. Árpád Bogsch, Director General.
Ottó Somorjay passed away in 2004 at the age of 96 years. He was the doyen of the Hungarian patent attorneys and widely recognised as the “grand old man” of the patent profession.