Today I have the pleasure of speaking with Megan Aanstoos (she/her/hers), Licensing and New Ventures Manager for Kentucky Commercialization Ventures (KCV). In this role, Megan is responsible for outreach and education on matters related to commercialization, along with assessing, managing, and licensing intellectual property developed at KCV partner institutions. Megan’s work allows her to pursue a lifelong passion for connecting people to make it easier to obtain the technology needed to live the life they want. In addition to her work in Kentucky, Megan also serves as the Chair of the AUTM Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Committee to help enhance inclusion within the technology transfer community. In fact, Megan received the 2021 AUTM Volunteer of the Year Award for her work on AUTM’s EDI Committee.
Listen as Megan shares her background and journey to Tech Transfer, Kentucky Commercialization Ventures (KCV), and what it does. Megan speaks about how her office is structured, her office’s metrics, and how the program has been doing over this past year. Megan believes that building a strong relationship with inventors and a powerful network in the business community is the best way to manage innovations to have the greatest opportunity for success.
Megan discusses some of KCV’s biggest success stories and shares that getting faculty, staff, and students to think of themselves as innovators is one of her biggest challenges. Megan also talks about what motivated her to be involved with EDI efforts, particularly in the University and Tech Transfer settings, what she believes they are doing right, and what they can improve on.
Megan defines Patent Racism and what she thinks needs to be done in that area. She talks about why AUTM formed the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee and its goals for the next year. Megan shares what the Emerging Member Program is, and she tells us where to start when wanting to get involved with AUTM. We finish up with Megan, giving us the four very insightful wishes she would like granted around EDI.
In This Episode:
- [02:46] Welcome to the show, Megan!
- [03:04] Megan shares her background and her journey to Tech Transfer.
- [04:45] Megan speaks about KCV, why it was formed, and what it does.
- [06:34] Can you tell us a little about your office and how it is structured?
- [07:21] Megan discusses her office’s metrics and how the program has been doing over the last year.
- [08:09] Megan believes that building a strong, trusting relationship with your innovators and a strong network in the business community are the two things needed in managing innovations to have the greatest opportunity for success.
- [08:31] What are some of KCV’s biggest success stories in terms of successful technologies?
- [09:46] Getting faculty, staff, and students to think of themselves as innovators are one of the biggest challenges her office faces.
- [10:31] What motivated you to be involved with DEI efforts, particularly in the University and Tech Transfer settings?
- [11:54] Megan speaks about what she believes University Tech Transfer offices are doing well when it comes to EDI and where they are struggling.
- [13:50] Megan discusses how she believes corporations, law firms, and government entities struggle with EDI.
- [15:35] Megan defines what she believes Patent Racism is and what needs to be done.
- [17:06] Are there some other considerations on EDI that you would like to mention globally?
- [18:15] Megan shares why AUTM formed the Committee and some Committee goals over the next year.
- [20:10] What is the Emerging Member Program, and what does it hope to accomplish?
- [21:04] Megan speaks about where to start when getting involved with AUTM.
- [22:24] Megan discusses being an ally for minority communities and how we all become better allies for minority and other underrepresented communities.
- [24:17] Megan shares what she believes is the best way to go about expanding diversity.
- [26:04] Megan talks about the three wishes she wants to be granted regarding equity, diversity, and inclusion.
- [28:14] Thank you so much for being on the show!