|Obituary forRudolf E. Blum
President of Honour
† December 12, 2009
Dr. Rudolf E. Blum, President of Honour of AIPPI, passed away on December 12, 2009, a few months after his ninetieth birthday.
Ruedi Blum, as he was called by his friends, was one of the giants in the history of AIPPI.
His father Eugen Blum, principal of the important Swiss patent law firm E. Blum & Co. in Zurich, had revived AIPPI, which had come to a standstill during world war one, in 1925 and had managed the Association since as history ‘ s second Secretary General until 1961.
Ruedi Blum, born 1919 in Zurich, studied law at the Universities of Zurich and Geneva. Although his studies were frequently interrupted by military service in the Swiss army during world war two, he was able to finish them with a doctorate in 1945. The subject of his thesis concerned the protection from the copying of technical achievements. After completion of his professional education in the USA he joined the management of the firm of his father in 1948 and became his assistant in the Bureau of AIPPI in 1952. Nine years later, he succeeded his father as Secretary General of AIPPI and shortly thereafter as head of the patent law firm E. Blum & Co.
Imagination, management skill and unlimited energy were the dominant characteristics of Ruedi Blum.
During his 22 years as Secretary General (1961 to 1983) he was instrumental to the formation of 19 National and Regional Groups of AIPPI, among which the Groups of South Africa, Brazil, Spain, Portugal, Korea, Soviet Union and China. He assisted the governments of several of these countries in the accession to the Paris Convention.
Ruedi Blum reorganised the publications of AIPPI and placed the Yearbooks, for which he served as voluntary editor in three languages, on a systematic basis. He introduced the Council of Presidents’ meeting as additional instrument to generate decisions of urgency between Congresses and Executive Committee Meetings and introduced a systematic three years’ cycle for these events.
Under his management AIPPI became truly universal.
Ruedi Blum retired from the leadership of AIPPI in 1983 together with the unforgettable Reporter General Paul Mathély with whom he had formed a dominant team and strong ties of friendship for more than 30 years. His final contribution to the Association were new Statutes which further improved the Organisation until they were superseded by new requirements of the internet age.
Ruedi Blum was a skilled chairman of AIPPI meetings. With his inevitable cigar and his strong voice he was an imposing figure. As author of numerous publications, in particular a three volume commentary of the Swiss Patent Law Act which he co –authored with Prof. Dr. Mario M. Pedrazzini, he had acquired a profound knowledge of international intellectual property law and could manage legal discussions with ease.
In his professional capacity and as Secretary General of AIPPI Ruedi Blum established and maintained a large network of contacts with international organisations, governments, and practitioners of which AIPPI profited greatly.
Considering all these activities, it is almost a miracle how Ruedi Blum found time for his family for which he cared greatly and his hobbies which included big game hunting and unique collections of modern art and African art. After his retirement Ruedi Blum became a respected painter.
In 1992 he attended for the last time an AIPPI Congress then held in Tokyo. He unfortunately gradually lost his eyesight which forced him to retire completely.
All those who had the pleasure to know and to work with Ruedi Blum share the grief of his wife Daiti and his family and will forever remember him.
Martin J. Lutz, President of Honour of AIPPI