Today Lisa has the pleasure of speaking with Kelly Sexton on this episode of Tech Transfer IP. Kelly is the Associate Vice President for Research-Technology Transfer and Innovations at the University of Michigan. Kelly works closely with the Vice President for Research and other leaders across the university to provide visionary and strategic leadership of U of M’s innovation, business engagement, and technology transfer activities, including the Office of Technology Transfer and the Business Engagement Center. In this role, Kelly supports and encourages university-wide programs for intellectual property development, innovations, and engagement with business and venture communities in the region, across the nation, and around the globe.
Kelly shares her journey to tech transfer and how she ended up at the University of Michigan and the campuses her office works with. She speaks about how her office is structured and that they have over 100 projects right now that may become startups in the future. Kelly also talks about the weekly meetings they have to keep everyone up to speed, which they call WORM meetings.
Kelly discusses how her office works with NAB, what Ann Arbor SPARK is, and the accelerator program they have at U-M. Kelly shares a story about a bell-ringing ceremony they do for startups and some other startups they are working with right now. She speaks about their corporate partnerships and their role in research and technology transfer at U-M.
Listen as Kelly describes some of her office’s biggest successes and their largest challenges. She talks about the programs they have at U-M to encourage and assist women inventors and entrepreneurs and what working with AUTM has meant to her career through the years.
In This Episode:
- [02:35] Welcome to the show, Kelly!
- [03:05] Kelly shares her journey to Tech Transfer and how she ended up at U-M.
- [06:05] She speaks about moving to the Research Triangle Park.
- [07:48] Kelly talks about the campuses her office works with.
- [08:28] Can you talk about how your office is structured?
- [11:11] Kelly speaks about having over 100 projects that may become startups.
- [14:03] Kelly talks about the WORM meetings they have weekly.
- [16:00] Listen as Kelly discusses how her office works with the National Advisory Board (NAB)
- [19:00] Kelly shares what Ann Arbor SPARK is and what they do.
- [21:02] Can you tell us about the accelerator you have at U-M?
- [24:59] Kelly discusses the Accelerate Blue Fund and what raising money through philanthropy means for them.
- [28:07] Kelly shares their impressive numbers from their 2020 Report on their invention disclosures, patent applications filed, patents issued, etc.
- [30:13] She tells a story about their startup bell ringings.
- [34:00] Kelly speaks about their most recent bell ringing with a company called Blue Conduit, an AI company.
- [35:19] Kelly discusses a few of their startup company’s with Refraction AI being the first.
- [36:58] She also speaks about LynxDx, a biotechnology company.
- [38:57] NuBundle a suite of software and services for patients undergoing assisted reproduction treatment.
- [40:13] Kelly speaks about the corporate partnership and their role in research and technology transfer at U-M.
- [44:17] Kelly discusses some of her office’s biggest success stories.
- [47:14] She speaks about Matterhorn, a free platform for vulnerable litigants.
- [48:15] What are some of your office’s biggest challenges?
- [51:57] Kelly shares the programs her office has to encourage and assist women inventors and entrepreneurs.
- [57:01] Kelly has been part of AUTM for many years, and she discusses it’s evolution and growth over time and what it has meant for her.
- [58:56] What is your view on credentialing?
- [59:40] Kelly talks about the vision she would like to have realized for U-M.
- [1:00:47] Thank you for being on the show!