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UIDP28 Speaker List

UIDP28 features more than 75 speakers from Fortune 50 companies, acclaimed universities and research institutions, economic development leaders and more. More are being added as the conference gets closer; check back to see the latest!

Elizabeth Adams

Elizabeth Adams

Elizabeth H. Adams is currently the Director of the Office of Research and Project Administration at Princeton University. Previously, she was an Associate with the UIDP (University Industry Demonstration Partnership), consulting on range of research-related topics including public-private partnerships, the management of federal funding, operations management and compliance. Her nearly 20 years of experience in sponsored programs management (spanning preaward, contracts, postaward and information functions) across four major research universities (University of Chicago, Northwestern University, University of Virginia and Princeton University) provides her a wide frame of reference for managing and advising on university-based and cross-sector research. Elizabeth has worked at the center, department, school and central university administration levels.


Priya Baboo

Priya Baboo is the Director of Industry, Innovation and Development, and Advisor to the Dean for the College of Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. Prior to joining Penn State, Ms. Baboo held several positions of increasing responsibility culminating with P&L responsibility for a business unit at VideoMining, an in-store behavior analytics firm. During her career, spanning nearly 2 decades, she fostered and grew relationships with several Fortune 100 consumer packaged goods manufacturers and retailers, mentored multi-disciplinary teams, successfully launched several new products, developed new analytical applications and provided strategic leadership to organizations. Ms. Baboo has an M.S. in Supply Chain Management from Penn State University and an MBA in Marketing from the University of Madras in India.

Charlotte Bell

As part of the University of Oxford’s Business and Partnering team, I support the establishment and management of strategic alliances in the Medical Sciences Division. Previously, I worked at the University of Bristol in the Knowledge Exchange and Commercialisation team focusing on impact development and industry engagement in Biomedical Sciences. I spent 3 years at the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council where I managed collaborative funding mechanisms including the Industrial Biotechnology Catalyst and Research Industry Clubs in Bioprocessing, Biorefining, Animal Health and Horticulture. I completed my Engineering Doctorate in Biopharmaceutical Process Development at Newcastle University, in collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline.

Elaine Brock

Elaine is a Project Manager for the UIDP, managing the Contract Accords and Master Agreements projects, both of which develop practical guidance and materials to help parties negotiating collaborative research agreements. She is President & Senior Partner at Contracts, Compliance, and Conflict of Interest Authority, LLC, where she provides advice and counsel to universities and small business on research administration issues.

Laura Demarse

Laura Demarse holds a doctorate in Higher & Adult Education from the University of Memphis, a Masters in Counseling Psychology from Fordham University, a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Marymount College and a Certificate in Higher Education Leadership from Wellesley College. She is currently the Assistant Dean for Professional development & External Relations in the Graduate School at NC State University, where she manages a team of 5 program managers and 4 graduate assistants. Prior to serving in this role, Laura has served as Assistant Dean, in the School of Business at NC Central University, Assistant Dean of Postdoctoral Affairs & Professional Development in the Graduate School at the University of Utah and Director of Career & Professional Development at the College of Charleston. Laura is a Nationally Certified Counselor, Master Career Counselor and advocate for professional and career development for graduate students and postdocs.

Randy Hall

Hall is Vice President for Research at the University of Southern California and is responsible for leading research initiatives across the university, overseeing research advancement, administration and ethics. The Stevens Center for Innovation, USC’s center for technology transfer and corporate research relations, is one of the units that reports to him. Hall’s experience includes serving as the founder/principal investigator for two national research centers, the Center for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events (CREATE), and the National Center for Metropolitan Transportation Research (METRANS). He also served as senior associate dean for research in the Viterbi School of Engineering for four years. Hall was chair of Industrial and Systems Engineering during a period when the faculty size grew by 50%, and when it became the first named academic department at the University of Southern California, upon receipt of a $10 million gift from Daniel J. Epstein. As Vice President, Hall has led the creation of policies to catalyze collaborative research, including changes in promotions and tenure, research attribution, and shared repositories; creation of funding programs that support collaborative research and shared equipment; and infrastructure and events enabling digital scholarship. He has helped faculty create national research centers, built alliances with external research institutes, developed the Center for Excellence in Research, created the DC-based research advancement office, and built an integrated research office that encompasses contracts and grants, technology transfer, human subject protection, animal resources, clinical trial administration, research ethics, research training, research advancement and internal grant programs. Hall is the architect for the TARA research administration system at USC, providing software tools that support research administration, compliance, technology transfer and business intelligence.

Ronda Hamm

Ronda Hamm leads Global Academic Relations for CortevaTM Agriscience, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont. In her role she develops strategic programing for universities to grow new talent and advance innovations for the agricultural industry. In 2016, Ronda was awarded the Distinguished Informal Educator Award from the National Science Teachers Association for her work in founding three successful science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programs (two while in graduate school and one at Dow AgroSciences (now Corteva Agriscience)) that continue to grow.  In the past seven years more than 500 Corteva Agriscience employees have impacted three quarters of a million people around the world.

Bob Hardy

Robert B. Hardy is Director of Contracts and Intellectual Property Management at the Council on Governmental Relations (COGR; (, an association of 190   research universities and several affiliated hospitals and research institutes.  COGR focuses on the impact of government policies and regulations on university research.  Mr. Hardy has lead COGR responsibility for university issues pertaining to federal contracting and technology transfer policies and regulations. Prior to coming to COGR in April 2001, Mr. Hardy was with the National Science Foundation (NSF) for over 30 years, serving in a variety of capacities. Mr. Hardy holds a B.A. degree from Gettysburg College and J.D. from Catholic University, and is a member of the Bars of Maryland and the District of Columbia.


Matthew Heim

Matthew is Executive Vice President of Customer Success and Professional Services at Wellspring. He has worked for over two decades in the areas of strategy and innovation helping hundreds of companies reinvent their internal innovation capabilities. Matthew has held executive leadership positions in top strategy and innovation firms, including PwC, KPMG, NineSigma, and inno360.  Prior to his work in innovation, he spent more than 10 years performing corporate turnarounds for global 1000 companies on five continents. Matthew is the author and co-author of six books, including the bestseller A Guide to Open Innovation and Crowdsourcing. He holds various degrees from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business and the University of Maryland, including a Ph.D. in Systems Science, an MS in System Management, and a BS in Computer Science.

Chris Hewitt

Hewitt has more than 28 years of experience working as the interface between chemical technology and business initiatives. He was appointed Science Relations Manager, North America for BASF in mid-2014 and has responsibility for BASF’s relationships with universities in North America. Prior to this he was BASF’s Global Business Manager for the Inorganic Intermediates business. Prior to joining BASF, Hewitt held a number of leadership roles at Sigma-Aldrich, including Director of Business Development for Chemistry and Vice President, Marketing and R&D. At Sigma-Aldrich, he led a successful team to improve external collaborations and the impact on their R&D initiatives. He earned a Ph.D. in chemistry from Durham University in United Kingdom and is a Chartered Chemist and Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Andy Johns

Andy Johns is Senior Associate Vice Chancellor for research at UNC-Chapel Hill University and is responsible for strategic planning, research policy, infrastructure and elements of regulatory compliance. Johns also works closely with the Vice Chancellor for Research on budget, facilities, and other administrative issues. Currently, he oversees the Office of Sponsored Research, Office of Clinical Trials, Office of Industry Contracting and the Office of Research Information Systems.

Dan Kramer

Daniel Kramer has 27 years of experience in multiple facets of business development, project management, and operations management for R&D and academic focused organizations.

Dan is presently Associate Vice President of the Industrial Liaison Office (ILO) for The Ohio State University’s Office of Research.  The ILO fosters private sector relationships by promoting OSU students, faculty, capabilities, and assets; champions adoption of university culture, policies, and processes that facilitate B2B engagement; and increases the visibility and effectiveness of university touch-points through which the breadth of OSU offerings may be explored.

Prior to his role with OSU, Dan was an accomplished Operations/Project Manager, Business Developer, and PMO Director for Battelle’s Medical Device Solutions business.  A native of Ohio, Dan lives with his wife and three sons in Dublin.  He received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering, and M.S. and Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering, from The Ohio State University.

Lisa Lorenzen

Lisa Lorenzen is the Executive Director of the ISU Research Foundation and Director of the Office of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer OIPTT), focused on technology transfer and economic development. The ISU Research Foundation owns and manages intellectual property on behalf of Iowa State University. The OIPTT markets and licenses intellectual property and negotiates contracts related to sponsored research with industry and manages grant programs related to economic development. Before joining ISU in March 1999, Lisa worked for five years as a computational biologist in the bioinformatics group at Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc.

Bradley Lukanic

Brad’s unique perspectives channel CannonDesign’s creativity and expertise. He is the firm’s lead strategist delineating why we are an industry leader, championing our established values and progressing an innovative culture. He encourages listening instead of what we want to progress in a silo. He believes we must constantly invest in our future and not merely be relevant but drive and lead with impactful solutions.  As CEO, Brad guides teams that accelerate, command and propel design’s influences on environments with goals resolving cross-disciplinary thinking and engagement. He is relentless in focusing how technology and physical spaces shape design, and how the build environment adapts by blurring boundaries and breaking down barriers.

Mary Napier

Mary manages UNC-CH HIV Cure Center operations, working with Dr. David Margolis, Scientific Director, to implement the scientific research agenda and to execute the strategic plans for the Center. Mary has 16 years of industrial research and operational experience at G.D. Searle, Xanthon Inc., Research Triangle Institute and Meryx Pharmaceuticals working in areas ranging from analytical methodology for pharmaceutics, nucleic acid biosensors, thermoelectric materials development for biological application and drug development for onocology.  She has 9 years of experience at UNC-CH. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign and a Ph.D. in physical chemistry from Northwestern University and has completed postdoctoral research at Harvard University and at UNC-Chapel Hill. Mary has 45 peer reviewed publications, 28 issued or pending patent applications.   She is also a 2012 C Knox Massey Distinguished Service Award winner.


Camille Noel

Camille’s primary specialties include collaborative innovation, idea incubation and development, translating proof of concept to implementation, and holistic strategy. She has a PhD in Medical Physics and a MS in Clinical Investigation.


Umesh Patel

Umesh Patel is Senior Director, Business Engagement, at the University of Michigan and works closely with companies to build partnerships around the University’s research, education, and service missions.  Umesh came to the University from consulting firm Accenture, where he was a Senior Manager managing business process and technology change for a diverse group of private sector and government clients. Prior to joining Accenture, Umesh was a Project Engineer with Westinghouse Electric Corporation where he designed and developed electrical control equipment.  Umesh holds an MBA from Carnegie-Mellon University and a BS in Electrical Engineering from The Ohio State University.

Marc Paradis

Marc joined Optum in July 2016 to help found, run and grow DSU. DSU has grown from 12 unique students to over 1,200 unique global participants across multiple programs and colleges. He is the principle lecturer and content developer across DSU’s Immersion College, Executive College, Mini-College and Data Science Academy. DSU’s vision is to transform the analytical DNA of Optum, UnitedHealth Care and UnitedHealth Group to be more data-centric, more data-savvy and more data-driven in support of our corporate mission to help people live healthier lives and to help make the health system work better for everyone.

Marc has a Master of Science degree in Brain and Cognitive Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Cornell University.  He has been leading data science, advanced analytics, data warehousing and business intelligence teams and projects in the provider, payer, pharma, patient, academic and commercial spaces for over 18 years.


Alex Primis

Alex has been with Thermo Fisher Scientific for 17 years. He worked in Finance for seven years and spent the last ten years in commercial roles.  For the past three years he has been in Corporate Accounts representing the entire Thermo Fisher Scientific portfolio bringing the total company value proposition to executives in the Academic Market to drive partnership and innovation.  Alex graduated from Allegheny College with a degree in Managerial Economics.

Mark Schmidt

Dr. Mark Schmidt is the Manager of Science and Technology Policy for John Deere. This role includes responsibility for global university relations. He joined Deere in 1999 and holds thirteen patents. He has held roles in R&D and innovation management as well as strategy and public policy. Mark holds leadership roles with the Conservation Technology Information Center, North Carolina Arboretum, and North Carolina Plant Sciences Initiative. He also is an Eagle Scout.  Schmidt holds Bachelor of Science degrees in landscape architecture and agronomy from Purdue University, a Master of Science in agronomy from Purdue University, and a Ph.D. in crop science from the University of Illinois.


Stewart Tansley

Stewart Tansley joined Facebook in 2015, managing research collaborations in connectivity, data science, and human-computer interaction, previously holding similar roles at Microsoft Research and Yahoo Labs. He holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence for Engineering from Loughborough University, UK. He has published papers on robotics for education, artificial intelligence, and network management, including several patents. He co-authored a book on software engineering for AI applications, and co-edited The Fourth Paradigm, a collection of visionary essays on data-intensive science.


Chris Townsend

Chris is the Chief Marketing Officer at Wellspring, the leading provider of software and solutions for corporate innovation, IP management, and technology transfer. He has been among the world’s foremost experts on innovation management for more than a decade. Chris was previously the lead analyst for innovation management at Forrester Research. He has also held global leadership positions at multiple firms serving the innovation space, in both North America and Europe. As CMO at Wellspring, he is responsible for all aspects of the company’s brand development, go-to-market strategy, and marketing operations. Chris has an undergraduate degree in biology from Harvard University, and speaks French and German in addition to his native English.

Jeffrey Waldin

Jeffrey has over twenty years of experience in regulatory affairs, with an emphasis on the implementation of business processes to maintain compliance, and development of information systems to support those processes.  He started in the office of the New York State Public Service Commission, followed by eight years in the Rensselaer Information Systems Center.  Over the past fourteen years with InfoEd Global, he has covered the requirements of protocol submission and review; clinical trials; intellectual property and conflict of interest management.

Jeffrey has been active with SRA since 2003 and served on the Education and Professional Development Committee since 2012.  He has also been with AUTM since 2003 and has been a preliminary judge for the Venture Forum competition since 2013.


Richard Warr

Richard Warr is a Professor of Finance at NC State University. He received his Ph.D in Finance from the University of Florida in 1998. His research focuses on information transmission in markets, equity valuation, endogeneity of corporate events such as option listings, short selling, capital structure and market microstructure. He has published papers in several top finance and accounting journals including the Journal of Accounting and Economics, the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Financial Management and the Journal of Corporate Finance. He currently serves as the Co-Editor of the Financial Review. His teaching is in the area of investments, portfolio management, security analysis and Fintech.


Mike Willardson

Mike is Associate General Counsel at Facebook on the IP Licensing and Open Source legal team. His primary focus at Facebook is to provide legal support for Facebook Research and their ongoing engagements with U.S and international universities and faculty. Mike was previously the Technology Transfer Chief at Stanford University’s SLAC National Accelerator Lab, where he focused on industry engagements, IP development and IP licensing. He has worked in-house at a variety of corporations, including Intel Corporation and NuScale Power, a university spin-out, and spent 4 years at a boutique IP law firm. Mike has a B.S.M.E from Portland State University, a J.D. from Lewis and Clark Northwestern School of Law, and is a registered patent attorney.

Stewart Witzeman

Stewart Witzeman is an independent consultant who works in the field of partnerships, partnership strategy and innovation processes. He received a Bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University with a dual major in Chemistry and Environmental Science, a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from The University of California, Santa Barbara and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at The University of Chicago. Prior to starting his consulting practice Stewart worked in the chemical industry for more than 30 where he held a number of positions managing a variety of Research and Development organizations. One of his key career accomplishments was leading the establishment of the Eastman Chemical Company – North Carolina State University Center of Excellence partnership, as well as strategic research partnerships with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Tennessee.  Stewart remains active with a number of professional organizations including the Industrial Research Institute (IRI) where he previously served on this organization’s board of directors and ultimately as board chairman from 2009-2010.  Stewart is also active with STEM education initiatives including leading the North Carolina Section of the American Chemical Society’s Project SEED program and serving on the Materials and Chemicals panel for the Boy Scouts of America “STEM Scouts” program.