PEGS-The Chain Episode 60

This month The Chain shares a recent episode of the Lab Rats to Unicorns podcast. Lab Rats to Unicorns, hosted by John Flavin, aims to demystify the process of creating a great company in the life sciences, biotech, medtech, clean energy, and beyond. In this episode, Flavin speaks with Lesley Millar-Nicholson, executive director of MIT’s Technology Licensing Office (TLO). Millar-Nicholson discusses the role of the TLO, what happens after a patent is filed and licensed to a company or start-up, how she got her start in the field, and her journey from Scotland to the U.S. She also delves into finding the right people for the best team, the importance of a diverse workforce and awareness, and being around science as a non-scientist.


Lesley Millar-Nicholson, executive director, MIT’s Technology Licensing Office (TLO) 
Lesley Millar-Nicholson is the executive director of MIT’s Technology Licensing Office (TLO) and was part of the Founding Leadership team of MIT Office of Strategic Alliances and Technology Transfer (OSATT) formed in 2019. As TLO executive director, she leads a team of technology transfer professionals. Together, they manage MIT’s intellectual assets and technology transfer process involving over 11,000 unique pending and issued US and foreign patents, and hundreds of copyright and open source assets. The team engages broadly with stakeholders to facilitate engagements leading to licenses for qualified third parties to deliver on the TLO mission to have impact through technology commercialization.

Prior to arriving in Cambridge Ms. Millar-Nicholson served for ten years as director of the Office of Technology Management (OTM) at the University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign. Ms. Millar-Nicholson is a past president Board of Governors of Certified Licensing Professionals Inc, a member of AUTM and the Licensing Executive Society, and a past Board Member of Cambridge Enterprise, UK. A native of Scotland, Ms. Millar-Nicholson has a B.Ed., M.Ed., MBA and is a Certified Licensing Professional.


John Flavin, MBA, founder & CEO, Portal Innovations
John is a proven leader with a track record of bringing valuable corporate, academic, and civic enterprises from concept to reality, including Advanced Life Sciences, Chicago Innovation Mentors, MATTER, and the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Chicago. John is Co-Founder and Chairman of Pyxis Oncology, Executive Chairman of ClostraBio, and Board member at Grove Biopharma. Over the course of his career, John has successfully raised more than $345 million of private and philanthropic capital to fund the development of transformative organizations. He is the host of the Lab Rats to Unicorns Podcast.

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