Testimony by Elizabeth Hart-Wells, Assistant Vice President for Research, Associate Director of the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, Purdue University
Foremost, I wish to thank the Committee for the opportunity to participate in today's hearing. It is an honor to be provided an opportunity to discuss the proposed legislation provisionally referred to as 'Improving the Transfer of Federally Funded Research and Technology Act of 2013".
I am Elizabeth Hart-Wells and I am assistant vice-president for research at Purdue University and associate director of the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship. With respect to intellectual property, I have worn a few relevant hats. I am an inventor on a patented technology resulting from my graduate research at Rice University, from which I earned by doctorate in chemistry. As a chemist, I have worked within a university spin-out, that was located in The Woodlands, Texas, as well as a large industrial chemical company principally based in the MidWest. At the National Academy of Sciences, and part of the Committee on Science, Engineering and Public Policy, I participated in science policy research initiatives in STEM education. I am also familiar with the hallowed halls of the U.S. House of Representatives, having been fortunate enough to earn a congressional fellowship sponsored by the American Chemical Society to participate in the American Association for the Advancement of Science's Science and Technology Policy Fellowships program. I am a registered patent practitioner with the United States Patent & Trademark Office and was with the law firm of Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, where I cut my teeth on patent prosecution, primarily working with universities and small businesses in the chemical and medical art fields.
Over the last decade of my career, I have been responsible for the management of university-generated intellectual property within the walls of academic research institutes, including the management of intellectual property for the Middle Atlantic Regional Center of Excellence for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases, a multi-party consortium of research institutes supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, led by the Center for Vaccine Development, University of Maryland School of Medicine. This brings me to today. With a team of dedicated Hoosiers and Boilermakers, I manage the Office of Technology Commercialization at the Purdue Research Foundation, one of the most comprehensive technology transfer programs among leading research universities in the United States. Services provided by our office support the economic development initiatives of Purdue University and execute on the university's mission as a public land-grant university. Over the last five years, our Office of Technology Commercialization has received and reviewed north of 1400 new invention and copyright disclosures, obtained nearly 500 issued Letters patents worldwide, granted commercial rights vis-a-via over 400 licenses and options to license, which translates to over 600 Purdue technologies, to the private sector.