Find insight and inspiration to conquer the world. Check out our lineup of headline speakers.
Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office
Kathi Vidal serves as the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) – America’s Innovation Agency.
As the chief executive of the USPTO, she leads one of the largest intellectual property offices in the world, with more than 13,000 employees and an annual budget of more than $4 billion. She is the principal IP advisor to the President and the Administration, through the Secretary of Commerce, and is focused on incentivizing and protecting U.S. innovation, entrepreneurship, and creativity. She leads an agency whose mission is to help American workers and businesses compete and collaborate, especially in ground-breaking technologies and across all demographics. As Director of the USPTO, Vidal is working to expand American innovation for and from all, and to bring more ideas to impact, including serving as the Vice Chair of the Council for Inclusive Innovation, alongside Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo and the Council members.
Director Vidal has spent her career championing the importance of mentoring and expanding opportunities to include more individuals from underserved communities. She has played an active role on the advisory board of Chiefs in Intellectual Property, a network of women leaders in technology, law, and policy, and on other boards and committees focused on diversity and inclusion, and has mentored diverse women across the globe as part of the Fortune-U.S. Department of State Global Women’s Mentoring Partnership program. She builds on that work today.
Tuesday Panel Discussion
Reimagining the TTO: From Technology Transfer to Knowledge Transfer
Senior Deputy Director
Clemson University Research Foundation
Building on the wildly popular 2022 Annual Meeting discussion that looked back at the evolution of the technology transfer profession we thou, this year's panel peers into th future and how tech transfer meets the industry's growing expectations. The incorporation of contracting, corporate engagement and economic development responsibilities in the tech transfer office have had an impact on many offices. The panel explores how continued mission growth and increased federal expectations arising from the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022 will shape the future of academic tech transfer.
Dr. Maria Elena Bottazzi
Co-Director, Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development
Maria Elena Bottazzi, PhD, is the Associate Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, Professor of Pediatrics and Co-director of Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. She is an internationally-recognized vaccinologist and global health advocate for neglected tropical diseases (NTD). With more than two decades of experience applying the product development partnership model, she has built sustainable biotechnology capacity and has successfully transitioned several NTD vaccines from bench up to Phase 2 clinical trials.
As a global thought-leader, she has received national and international highly regarded awards, has more than 120 scientific papers and participated in more than 200 conferences worldwide. She is a Fellow of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine, the Leshner Leadership Institute Public Engagement (Infectious Diseases) of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a Sr. Fellow of the American Leadership Forum.
Currently, she is an Emerging Leader in Health and Medicine Scholar of the National Academies of Medicine and committee member to the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine for the Stronger Food and Drug Regulatory Systems Abroad consensus study.
Dr. Bottazzi was born in Italy and raised in Honduras where she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Microbiology and Clinical Chemistry from the National Autonomous University of Honduras. She then obtained a doctorate in Molecular Immunology and Experimental Pathology from the University of Florida and post-doctoral training in Cellular Biology completed at University of Miami and Pennsylvania. Her academic career started at the George Washington University in Washington DC where she resided for 11 years prior to relocating to Houston in 2011.