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A diverse staff with both University and industry experience comprises the Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC), which is critical to our mission of promoting and supporting innovation and translation of University discoveries to products and services that impact the world.


Michelle Bolas
Chief Innovation Officer, UNC-Chapel Hill; Executive Director, Innovate Carolina
Kennetha Smith Kennetha Smith
Executive Assistant to the Chief Innovation Officer


Provides administrative support for the team.

Honey-Marie Braswell Honey-Marie Braswell
Administrative Assistant

Technology Commercialization

The Technology Commercialization staff manage portfolios of technologies and innovations developed by UNC-Chapel Hill faculty and staff. This involves developing and fostering relationships, evaluating new discoveries and ideas, evaluating and protecting intellectual property, and marketing and licensing UNC-Chapel Hill technologies to industry and startup companies for their development into products and services.

A lead Commercialization Manager is assigned to each UNC-Chapel Hill school, department and institute as a primary point of contact. You will find the appropriate contact for your area in this table.

Kelly Parsons Kelly Parsons, PhD
Director of Technology Commercialization
Peter Liao Peter Liao, MBA
Commercialization Manager
Chance Rainwater Chance Rainwater, PhD
Senior Commercialization Manager
Jackie Quay, JD
Director, Licensing & Innovation Support
Matt Howe, PhD
Commercialization Manager
Ruthie Arieti, PhD
Commercialization Fellow

Licensing & Innovation Support

The experienced staff provides support for licensing, intellectual property-related contracts, patent filings and prosecution, MTAs, CDAs and ensures compliance with University and government regulations.

Jackie Quay, JD
Director, Licensing & Innovation Support
Jennifer Dean Jennifer Dean
Patent Manager
Kaye Carver Kaye Carver
Patent Assistant
Carmen Melvin, JD
Licensing Manager
Doris Perry Doris Perry
Inventions, Federal Reporting and Annuities
Alana Towles
Material Transfer Agreement Manager
Judith Whitford Judith Whitford
Patent and License Finances
Kun Zhang
Patent Assistant

Carolina Startup Services

KickStart Venture Services

The team has startup and investment experience and helps UNC faculty and staff interested in commercializing UNC technologies through startups.

Mireya McKee, PhD
Director, KickStart Venture Services
Judy Prasad, PhD
Operations and Program Manager
Jeff Speakman, PhD
Accelerator Lab Manager
Kathleen Lowry
Project Manager

Market Landscape Research Services

Supported in part by funding from the U.S. Economic Development Administration, this team provides market landscape analysis services for startups.

Cindy Reifsnider
Research Analyst
Patrick Kastian
Research Analyst

Carolina Angel Network

This team leads the Carolina Angel Network, the only official angel investor network for startups and ventures affiliated with UNC-Chapel Hill.

Chelsea Eshraghi
Managing Director
Hallie French
Program Manager


These entrepreneurs serve as advisors to the UNC-Chapel Hill community, providing their expertise and connecting other entrepreneurs with support, management and investment.

Bob Dieterle
Executive in Residence – Digital Health, AI/ML

Outreach & Technology Development

Working efficiently and integrating across the University are of critical importance for us to be effective in translating and commercializing UNC-Chapel Hill’s innovations and technologies. Consistent engagement with faculty and staff in combination with education and awareness regarding resources and support enhance the innovative and entrepreneurial capacities of our faculty and staff.

Michael Kline Michael Kline, PhD
Director, Outreach & Technology Development

Strategic Partnerships

Partnerships with industry, other academic and medical institutions, foundations, investors and regional and national agencies are fundamentally important for us to bring UNC innovations to market.

Bryant Moore Bryant Moore, PhD
Director, Strategic Partnerships