Patents by Inventor Laurel Thomas

Laurel Thomas has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 9790013
    Abstract: A system for dispensing articles provided initially in a package is disclosed that comprises a frame configured to support the package of articles and a package-opening tool associated with the frame. The frame includes longitudinally opposed front and rear end sections, and an upper support deck extending at least partially between the front and rear end sections and below which a product display area is provided. The opening tool associated with the frame such that its open the package when the package is moved longitudinally on the upper support deck and relative to the opening tool, thereby allowing the articles to be at least partially dispensed from the package into the product display area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 17, 2017
    Assignee: WestRock MWV, LLC
    Inventors: Caleb S. Loftin, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas, Derek King, John A. Gelardi
  • Publication number: 20170240365
    Abstract: A system for dispensing articles provided initially in a package is disclosed that comprises a frame configured to support the package of articles and a package-opening tool associated with the frame. The frame includes longitudinally opposed front and rear end sections, and an upper support deck extending at least partially between the front and rear end sections and below which a product display area is provided. The opening tool associated with the frame such that its open the package when the package is moved longitudinally on the upper support deck and relative to the opening tool, thereby allowing the articles to be at least partially dispensed from the package into the product display area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 12, 2010
    Publication date: August 24, 2017
    Applicant: MEADWESTVACO CORPORATION
    Inventors: Caleb S. Loftin, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas, Derek King
  • Patent number: 9637292
    Abstract: A system for dispensing articles provided initially in a package is disclosed that comprises a frame configured to support the package of articles and a package-opening tool associated with the frame. The frame includes longitudinally opposed front and rear end sections, and an upper support deck extending at least partially between the front and rear end sections and below which a product display area is provided. The opening tool associated with the frame such that its open the package when the package is moved longitudinally on the upper support deck and relative to the opening tool, thereby allowing the articles to be at least partially dispensed from the package into the product display area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 2, 2017
    Assignee: WestRock MWV, LLC
    Inventors: Caleb S. Loftin, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas, Derek King, John A. Gelardi
  • Patent number: 9505538
    Abstract: A system for dispensing articles provided initially in a package is disclosed that comprises a frame configured to support the package of articles and a package-opening tool associated with the frame. The frame includes longitudinally opposed front and rear end sections, and an upper support deck extending at least partially between the front and rear end sections and below which a product display area is provided. The opening tool associated with the frame such that its open the package when the package is moved longitudinally on the upper support deck and relative to the opening tool, thereby allowing the articles to be at least partially dispensed from the package into the product display area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 29, 2016
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Caleb S. Loftin, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas, Derek King, John A. Gelardi
  • Patent number: 9174785
    Abstract: A product dispensing system including a container defining an internal volume and an opening into the internal volume, the container including a weakened severance line extending from the opening to define an access panel, and a dispenser including a frame and a catch element, the frame having a support deck and defining a recess sized to receive the access panel, the catch element being positioned to engage the opening in the container, separate the access panel from the container along the weakened severance line, and guide the separated access panel into the recess when the container is moved along the support deck.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 3, 2015
    Assignee: WestRock MWV, LLC
    Inventors: John Gelardi, Bradford J. Walling, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas
  • Patent number: 9102456
    Abstract: A product dispensing container including a plurality of walls that define an internal volume, at least one of the walls including an access door panel, a priming area and a severance line, and a plurality of products received in the internal volume, wherein the priming area is displaceable relative to the wall to form a free edge, and wherein the access door panel is at least partially defined by the free edge and the severance line when the priming area is displaced relative to the wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2015
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Laurel Thomas, Aaron L. Bates, John Gelardi
  • Patent number: 9096361
    Abstract: A product dispensing container including a plurality of walls that define an internal volume, at least one of the walls including an access door panel, a priming area and a severance line, and a plurality of products received in the internal volume, wherein the priming area is displaceable relative to the wall to form a free edge, and wherein the access door panel is at least partially defined by the free edge and the severance line when the priming area is displaced relative to the wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Laurel Thomas, Aaron L. Bates, John Gelardi
  • Publication number: 20140102942
    Abstract: A product dispensing container including a plurality of walls that define an internal volume, at least one of the walls including an access door panel, a priming area and a severance line, and a plurality of products received in the internal volume, wherein the priming area is displaceable relative to the wall to form a free edge, and wherein the access door panel is at least partially defined by the free edge and the severance line when the priming area is displaced relative to the wall.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 6, 2014
    Publication date: April 17, 2014
    Applicant: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Laurel Thomas, Aaron L. Bates, John Gelardi
  • Publication number: 20140103056
    Abstract: A product dispensing container including a plurality of walls that define an internal volume, at least one of the walls including an access door panel, a priming area and a severance line, and a plurality of products received in the internal volume, wherein the priming area is displaceable relative to the wall to form a free edge, and wherein the access door panel is at least partially defined by the free edge and the severance line when the priming area is displaced relative to the wall.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 6, 2014
    Publication date: April 17, 2014
    Applicant: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Laurel Thomas, Aaron L. Bates, John Gelardi
  • Patent number: 8668114
    Abstract: An improved dispensing system for dispensing products provided initially in a package that includes an activatable opening structure is disclosed. The dispensing system comprises a frame being configured to support the package of products and an opening tool associated with the frame. The opening tool engages with the activatable opening structure on the package to create an opening when the package is moved longitudinally along the frame of the dispensing system, thus allowing the products to be at least partially dispensed out of the package into the product display area of the frame through the opening formed on the rear panel or on an angular of the rear and side panels of the package.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 11, 2014
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: John Gelardi, Laurel Thomas
  • Patent number: 8646621
    Abstract: A product dispensing system including a container that defines an internal volume and an access opening into the internal volume, at least one product received in the internal volume and a biasing assembly extendable into the internal volume to urge the product toward the access opening, wherein the container is engaged with the biasing assembly when the biasing assembly extends into the internal volume.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 11, 2014
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Matthew E. Zacherle, Laurel Thomas, Bradford J. Walling
  • Patent number: 8628003
    Abstract: A product dispensing container including a plurality of walls that define an internal volume, at least one of the walls including an access door panel, a priming area and a severance line, and a plurality of products received in the internal volume, wherein the priming area is displaceable relative to the wall to form a free edge, and wherein the access door panel is at least partially defined by the free edge and the severance line when the priming area is displaced relative to the wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 14, 2014
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Laurel Thomas, Aaron L. Bates, John Gelardi
  • Publication number: 20130240552
    Abstract: A recloseable paperboard container (10) is disclosed that includes: a body (12) defining an internal volume (18) and an opening (20) into the internal volume, a connector member (14) connected to the body, and a lid (16) releasably engaged with the connector member to form a seal between the connector member and the lid. The connector member may include a flange (44) extending about the opening of the body and releasably engaging with the lid.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 27, 2011
    Publication date: September 19, 2013
    Applicant: MEADWESTVACO CORPORATION
    Inventor: Laurel Thomas
  • Patent number: 8485423
    Abstract: A product container and dispenser including a housing having a plurality of walls that define an internal volume, a first wall of the housing defining an opening into the internal volume, and a partition structure positioned in the internal volume, the partition structure including a sealing wall aligned with the first wall and a partition wall connected to the sealing wall, wherein the opening is at least partially obstructed by the sealing wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2013
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Laurel Thomas, William Bogdziewicz, Aaron L. Bates
  • Patent number: 8448815
    Abstract: A product dispenser including a frame configured to support a plurality of products and flag element connected to the frame, the flag element being moveable relative to the frame from a first, un-deployed configuration when the flag element is engaged with at least one of the products, to a second, deployed configuration when the flag element is not engaged with the products.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2013
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: Andrew B. Sholl, John Gelardi, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas, Caleb S. Loftin
  • Publication number: 20130105509
    Abstract: A system (100) for dispensing a plurality of products provided initially in a package (50) is disclosed that includes a dispensing device having laterally opposed side walls (18A, 18B), a lower deck (16) connecting the opposing side walls and including at least one guide surface, and an upper deck (14) upon which a package is placed. The products are dispensed from within the package onto the lower deck where the guide surface assists the products to roll linearly from a rear end to a front end of the dispensing device. The dispensing system may include an opening tool (40) associated with the dispensing device and arranged to open the package when the package is moved longitudinally on the upper deck. The dispensing system may include a restocking indicator (290). The dispensing device may further include a structure on its rear end section to facilitate the dispensing of products.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 22, 2011
    Publication date: May 2, 2013
    Applicant: MEADWESTVACO CORPORATION
    Inventors: John A. Gelardi, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas
  • Publication number: 20120325839
    Abstract: A device for dispensing and displaying products is disclosed. The device comprises: a package assembly having an outer sleeve with at least one aperture formed therein and a product retaining insert slidably engaged within the outer sleeve; a frame having an upper support deck and a product display area; and an engagement feature extending from the frame. When the package assembly is slid longitudinally onto the upper support deck of the frame, the engagement feature extends through the aperture formed in the outer sleeve and engages with the product retaining insert such that the products inside the package assembly are at least partially dispensed from the package into the product display area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 1, 2011
    Publication date: December 27, 2012
    Applicant: MEADWESTVACO CORPORATION
    Inventors: Aaron L. Bates, Caleb S. Loftin, Ryan A. Bailey, Laurel Thomas
  • Patent number: 8322543
    Abstract: A product dispenser including a frame having a first side wall, a second side wall laterally opposed from the first side wall, a lower support surface positioned between the first and second side walls and having a front end longitudinally spaced from a rear end, the rear end being elevated relative to the front, and an upper support surface positioned between the first and second side walls and spaced apart from the lower support surface, the upper support surface having a front end longitudinally spaced from a rear end, the front end being elevated relative to the rear, and a rib connected to the upper support surface and protruding outward from a plane defined by the upper support surface in a direction away from the lower support surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2012
    Assignee: MeadWestvaco Corporation
    Inventors: John Gelardi, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas
  • Publication number: 20120285976
    Abstract: A product dispensing system including a container defining an internal volume and an opening into the internal volume, the container including a weakening feature, the opening and the weakening feature defining an access panel, and a dispenser including a frame having longitudinally opposed first and second ends, and including a support deck and a product display area, the support deck extending at least partially between the first and second ends, the product display area being positioned below the support deck, and a catch element connected to the frame proximate the first end, the catch element protruding away from the second end such that the catch element engages the opening in the container and at least partially separates the access panel from the container as the container longitudinally moves along the support deck from the first end toward the second end.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 11, 2011
    Publication date: November 15, 2012
    Inventors: William J. Bogdziewicz, III, John Gelardi, Aaron L. Bates, Laurel Thomas
  • Publication number: 20120285977
    Abstract: A product dispensing system including a dispenser frame having a front end longitudinally opposed from a rear end, the dispenser frame including a support deck extending at least partially between the front end and the rear end, the support deck having an upper surface and defining a channel below the upper surface, the channel having an entrance opening and an exit opening, and a product display area positioned below the support deck, and a catch element connected to the dispenser frame proximate the entrance opening.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 29, 2011
    Publication date: November 15, 2012
    Inventors: Aaron L. Bates, John Gelardi, Laurel Thomas