The National Association of Patent Practitioners (NAPP) was incorporated in Virginia as a 501(c)(6) nonprofit trade association on January 22, 1996. Ms. Joy Bryant founded the organization, which initially included 19 patent practitioners. NAPP included mostly solo practitioner patent agents, who had an interest in forming an organization focused on patent drafting and prosecution practice before the USPTO. Thus, NAPP began as a meeting place for the "colleague down the hall". NAPP held its first annual meeting in Williamsburg, Virginia in October 1996.

Today NAPP comprises of hundreds of members throughout the United States and around the world. NAPP membership is almost evenly split between agents and attorneys. Member experience varies from those who are just starting their patent career to those who have been in patent practice for over 30 years.

NAPP continues to promote collegial support amongst members through Annual Meeting and Conferences (AMC) and by disseminating information via its forum directed to Patent Prosecution and Practice Management. The Patent Prosecution forum is focused on patent drafting and prosecution practice issues and allows for an on-going daily discussion between members on issues related to practice before the USPTO, PCT Practice and Foreign patent practice as well as Patent Law Reform. The Patent Practice Management forum provides a place for members to discuss a variety of issues from running/managing a practice to marketing practice to member-to-member referrals.

The focus of NAPP is to foster professionalism in the patent practitioner community, enhance day-to-day practice of practitioners, and to aid patent agents and patent attorneys in staying current in matters relating to practice before the USPTO and foreign jurisdictions. NAPP is a diverse organization, especially welcoming those who are just beginning their patent career and are looking for mentorship opportunities.