AUTM Annual Meeting

Get Inspired

Find insight and inspiration to conquer the world. Check out our lineup of headline speakers.

Fireside Chat

Alejandra Y. Castillo
U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development

Ms. Castillo will discuss U.S. Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) seven investment priorities, the importance of federally funded research and technology transfer on advancing them, and EDA’s historic $3 billion allocation under President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, among other topics.

As head of the EDA, Ms. Castillo is responsible for fulfilling the agency’s mission of leading the federal economic development agenda, including overseeing the implementation of funds in the American Rescue Plan. An experienced public administrator, she previously served as National Director of the Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency and held senior policy positions at the White House and the International Trade Administration.

Opening Keynote

Lt. General Russel L. Honoré (Ret.)

Gen.  Honoré helps organizations develop a culture of preparedness and initiates a mindset of problem-solving using strategies that create take-charge leaders. He will speak on tackling the world's "impossible problems" with blue sky technologies.

As the commander of Joint Task Force Katrina, LTG Honoré became known as “The Category 5 Gen.” for his striking leadership style in coordinating military relief efforts in post-hurricane New Orleans. In 2021 he was tasked by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., with leading a review of the U.S. Capitol’s security in the wake of the deadly Jan. 6, 2021, attack.

Gen. Honoré uses his experience managing natural and man-made conflict to help companies and organizations build a culture of preparedness. On stage, his disciplined leadership shines. In our country’s new normal, change and unpredictability are constants, which mean resilience is mandatory. Gen. Honoré offers his business audiences these impactful takeaways plus an instructive message: "Don't Get Stuck on Stupid!", the title of his third book.

His uplifting dose of candor with real-world leadership lessons is designed to equip audiences with a preparedness mindset. He shares his no-nonsense approach to getting the job done and instills confidence in tomorrow’s leaders.

The General is a decorated 37-year army veteran and global authority on leadership. When Hurricanes such as Harvey, Irma, and Maria approach, news networks like CNN, Fox, MSNBC, and CBS consider him their go-to expert on emergency and disaster preparedness.

Gen. Honoré developed his crisis-management expertise over an extensive military career. He planned and supported the United States military response to the devastating flooding which swept Venezuela 1999 and Mozambique in 2000. As Commander of SJFHQ-HLS under NORTHCOM direction, he planned and oversaw the military response to the Space Shuttle Columbia Tragedy and the DC Sniper Shootings.

Prior to commanding Joint Task Force-Katrina in which he led the Department of Defense response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, he served in a variety of command and staff positions. These roles focused on Defense Support to Civil Authorities and Homeland Defense. Gen. Honoré also participated in three Top Officials (TOPOFF) exercises, as well as the United Endeavor series of Homeland Defense exercises.

In 2004, Gen. Honoré was appointed Commander of the oldest and longest established U.S. field army: the 500,000 troop First Army. The First Army World War pedigree includes distinguished names like John “Black Jack” Pershing and Omar Bradley. It serves today as a mobilization, readiness and training command. After 37 years of active service, Lt. Gen. Honoré retired from the U.S. Army on February 29, 2008.

Closing Keynote

Anna Young, CEO of MakerHealth

Ms. Young works from a fundamental belief that, with the right tools, everyday people can use their ingenuity to create devices that heal. Applying years of global experience with the Maker Movement, she brings prototyping tools and makerspaces into hospitals enhance the natural problem solving abilities of clinicians and patients. She is the Co-Founder of MakerNurse, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation sponsored program to support inventive, frontline nurses. Her roots come from MIT as researcher in the Little Devices Lab and lecturer in the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science. In 2015, She was recognized by LinkedIn as a top Health Innovator under 35 and in 2016 received Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business.

Perspectives from the Far Side of the Moon

Moderator:  Ian McClure, University of Kentucky

Gaylene Anderson, Boehringer Ingelheim
Katharine Ku, Wilson Sonsini
Kirsten Leute, Osage University Partners
Gayatri Varma, AstraZeneca
Teri Willey, IU Ventures

They say hindsight is 20/20. That's why stepping out of tech transfer and looking back in can offer a valuable view. This general session event will focus on the insights gained by panelists who were once TTO leaders and now work on the outside to help others succeed. We all know that discussions between academia and industry often end up being more prolonged, antagonistic, and complicated than necessary. This results not only in higher transaction costs, but in delays around getting the deal done — or failure to do so at all. When you consider that many of these innovations could one day save lives, it’s easy to see that the fallout goes well beyond the economic.

About the Speakers
Ian McClure
Ian McClure [moderator] is the Associate Vice President for Research (AVPR), Innovation and Economic Impact, and Executive Director, UK Innovate, at the University of Kentucky (UK). He leads efforts to translate UK discoveries for the public good, seek equitable returns on UK intellectual property, create innovative approaches to develop, fund and support opportunities for near-stage research, enhance UK’s investments in innovation, catalyze a culture and capacity for entrepreneurship, and expand industry and other collaborative research partnerships with UK Research and in Kentucky more broadly.

Ian’s portfolio includes oversight of the UK Office of Technology Commercialization (UK OTC), UK Innovation Connect for industry partnerships, UK Innovation Economic Development, and UK’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Training. As UK OTC’s previous Executive Director, he oversaw a team of 25+ staff managing the University’s innovation, intellectual property and startup portfolios. Ian is also the Chair-Elect of the Board of Directors for AUTM, an advisory board member for the Oak Ridge Institute, chair of IPwe’s Advisory Committee for University Technology Transfer, Launch Blue Advisory Board member, and Kentucky Intellectual Property Alliance (KYIPA) executive advisory committee member. He is also a co-founder of Kentucky Commercialization Ventures (KCV), a state-funded and KSTC-managed program to provide IP and tech transfer services to all other universities in the state that do not currently have dedicated IP and tech transfer resources. In addition, Ian is a PI or Co-I on three federal grants (NIH and EDA) focused on tech-based economic development as an innovator.

Gaylene Anderson as Boehringer Ingelheim’s Director, Global Transactions and Contracts Management, Gaylene is responsible for negotiating license/collaboration deals, research agreements, and managing strategic alliance programs. Prior to joining BI, Gaylene served as the Director, Cleveland Clinic/ University of Notre Dame Global Alliance Commercialization Program – managing all life science IP, negotiating license deals and research opportunities, and spinning out startup companies

Throughout her career, Gaylene has had a strong focus on economic development and entrepreneurship activities. As a result, she has created over a dozen startup companies, developed relationships with investor groups around the U.S., and helped grow research collaboration opportunities for university programs. Prior to the Cleveland Clinic, she worked for the University of Idaho and the University of Hawaii, as a Senior Licensing Associate.

Gaylene has won several leadership awards for her work with faculty and students, particularly with respect to her entrepreneurial accomplishments (including her own company, Waterproof Kids®).

Katharine Ku is currently serving as Chief Licensing Advisor at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Previously, she was Executive Director of Stanford University’s Office of Technology Licensing (OTL) for 27 years, until 2018. Ku was President of AUTM from 1988-90. She received the AUTM 2001 Bayh-Dole Award for her efforts in university technology transfer. In 1999, Stanford OTL received the LES Achievement Award.

Ku is currently the Vice-Chair of the Visiting Committee for Advanced Technology of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Ku has a B.S. Chemical Engineering from Cornell University, an M.S. in Chemical Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis, and is a registered patent agent.

Kirsten Leute is Partner, University Relations at Osage University Partners (OUP). In leading University Relations for OUP, Kirsten is responsible for the relationships with approximately 100 academic institutions that are partnered with the fund, engaging potential new partner institutions, and creating and delivering value-add programs for the partnered academic institutions.

Kirsten is an experienced technology transfer professional, having spent 19 years in technology transfer at Stanford University and the German Cancer Research Center. Prior to joining OUP, she was Associate Director at Stanford’s Office of Technology Licensing. Over her career at Stanford, she managed portfolios of inventions in most technology areas, but concentrated in biotechnology.

Kirsten continues to be actively involved in technology transfer and university startups outside her daily work. She is currently on advisory boards for the University of Michigan, University of Arizona, and Oregon Health Sciences University technology transfer offices, is a board member of Women in Bio, is an Adcom member for America’s Seed Fund (SBIR/STTR out of NSF), and is a former two-time board member for the AUTM.

Gayatri Varma is Senior Director, Transactions, Oncology Business Development & Licensing at AstraZeneca. She engages in global transactional and partnering activities including with industry, academia and government. Prior to joining AstraZeneca, Gayatri was the Executive Director of the Office of Technology Commercialization at the University of Maryland. There she oversaw the licensing and patenting activities and was involved in developing and amending policies, as well as initiating new programs. She started her career at the University of Maryland as a licensing associate in the life sciences. Gayatri is a former AUTM Board Member.

Teri Willey returned to Indiana in 2018 to join Indiana University as an Executive Director of IU Ventures and to launch and manage the new Indiana Philanthropic Venture Fund. She is a member of the IU Ventures Board and Investment Committee; Dimension Mill/Velocities Investment Committee; a Director of the Venture Club of Indiana, a Director of portfolio companies NERx Biosciences, Diagnotes and Periodic, and an Advisor to OnCode Institute in the Netherlands.

Her career has been about starting and re-organizing university technology transfer programs and launching new early stage funds that invest in university science based ventures.

Teri served as Vice President of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory leading a new program for industry engagement, new ventures and intellectual property licensing; Vice President for Technology and Business Development for Mount Sinai School of Medicine; founding Chief Executive of Cambridge Enterprise, Ltd the technology commercialization affiliate of the University of Cambridge in England; founder and Managing Partner of ARCH Development Partners (ADP), a seed and early stage venture fund focused on university and corporate spin-outs; Business Development for Endocyte, Inc., University of Notre Dame Business School Adjunct Faculty; and Vice President of Start-ups at ARCH Development Corporation, a subsidiary of the University of Chicago, which commercialized technology from the University and Argonne National Laboratory. Her prior experience also includes non-executive board positions with a several early stage companies, technology transfer leadership roles at Northwestern University and Purdue Research Foundation, founding membership on the Indiana 21st Century Fund Board and business development for International Minerals and Chemical.

Teri has been an advisor to policy makers, universities and companies, is a past President of AUTM, a former Bye Fellow of Christ’s College Cambridge in England and a Sagamore of the Wabash.

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Breakfast

Lecresha Sewell, Founder and CEO of Melanated Healthcare

Lecresha Sewell, a healthcare industry pioneer and innovator, is a board certified, Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner in Louisville, Kentucky. She has worked in various healthcare settings including primary care, forensic nursing, prevention and wellness, nursing education, aesthetics, family planning, neonatal nursing, and women’s health. She is passionate about health equity and seeks to eliminate disparities. She promotes health equity through her involvment in  community organizations.

Lecresha earned her bachelors degree in Nursing from University of Louisville, a Master of Science in Nursing with a concentration in women’s health from University of Cincinnati, and  Doctor of Nursing Practice from Chatham University. She also received a credential as a sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE).

Annual Meeting Sponsors

Amster, Rothstein & Ebenstein LLP
Osage University Partners
Casimir Jones, SC
Michael Best & Friedrich
Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Nixon Peabody
Parker Highlander PLLC
LevelSet Capital
Marshall Gerstein
Blank Rome LLP
KISSPlatform Europe BV
Quarles & Brady LLP
Computer Packages, Inc.
Boehringer Ingelheim
Schwegman Lundberg & Woessner
NYU Langone
Fox Rothschild LLP