Junior or Senior Commercialization Manager (Two Positions) – UNC Chapel Hill

Please note: this job has already been filled by Gardner Innovation Search Partners.

Research at UNC-Chapel Hill improves lives and creates tremendous social and economic value.

To accelerate the pipeline of important ideas that are successfully put into practical use, Chancellor Carol Folt created the Office for Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development in February 2015. The Office, known as Innovate Carolina, is the pan-university network and ecosystem of support for innovation which houses the Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC). OTC is responsible for managing all aspects of UNC-Chapel Hill intellectual property. Additionally, as part of Innovate Carolina, the office helps faculty, staff, and students effectively manage inventions and technologies that may have impact with or without commercialization.


Commercialization Manager Job Duties:

UNC is hiring two Commercialization Managers (CM) to help researchers conceptualize and commercialize novel technologies in the life science industry. The titles and compensation will be commensurate with experience.

The CM educates faculty and manages the process of disclosing, protecting (patent, copyright, or tangible property), developing strategic marketing plans for, and licensing their inventions.

Duties include evaluating technologies, managing patent prosecution, coordinating marketing plans, and drafting and negotiating a range of intellectual property-related contracts. The CM places special emphasis on building faculty relationships, making investment decisions, and developing commercialization strategies in coordination with a range of related offices and stakeholders.

The CM works closely with innovators, leadership and the other technology commercialization managers to assess, market and license intellectual property to industry, negotiates directly with licensees, and closes high-value license agreements. The CM also supports the OTC’s efforts to create new start-up companies.

Employee can expect to perform research and analysis on a variety of issues including patent trends, innovation, technical issues, and technology transfer topics of importance to UNC.

The Commercialization Manager leverages OTC’s engagement with industry and investors to stimulate innovation, present new business and research opportunities, and promote staff engagement with the commercialization process.

The CM will partner with patent counsel to secure and maintain intellectual property protection for relevant innovations within the portfolio. The CM will provide guidance and support to inventors and univeristy-wide initiatives and help shape the future of UNC’s intellectual property portfolios to align with strategic goals and industry needs.

Salary and Benefits:

The salary for this role is $75,000-$130,00 based on experience. This position may be eligible for a hybrid working arrangement. 

The University provides eligible employees with access to a variety of benefit plans that promote health and wellness, in addition to helping employees build financial resources for retirement.

UNC offers the sort of robust benefit plans you would expect from a leading employer—including employer paid medical and retirement for eligible employees and a variety of health, life and income protection plans, which can be valuable to an individual’s specific needs.

The UNC System Office provides an interactive video guide to UNC benefits, which includes information on health, prescription drug, dental, vision, flexible spending accounts, cancer insurance, critical illness, group life, accident insurance, disability and retirement programs.

Learn more about the UNC system.

Here is the UNC Chapel Hill Commercialization Manager Position Specification with further details.

Commercialization Manager Qualifications

Minimum Requirements:   

  • Relevant post-Baccalaureate degree required (or foreign degree equivalent); for candidates demonstrating comparable independent research productivity or professional-level background in technology transfer, will accept a relevant Bachelor’s degree (or foreign degree equivalent) and 1 or more years of relevant experience in substitution.
  • Technology transfer experience including managing the flow of research innovation, disclosures, patents, trademarks, copyrights and other aspects of technology commercialization.
  • One or more years of experience working in university commercialization evaluating invention disclosures, marketing technologies and negotiating license agreements or equivalent experience. Experience with life science technologies preferred.
  • A clear understanding of intellectual property management, including patents and copyright.
  • Ability to understand a range of science and technology within the computer, engineering, chemical, or biological science industries, with special emphasis on life science.
  • Demonstrated familiarity with intellectual property licensing and technology commercialization in industry or academic setting.
  • Excellent oral and written communication.
  • Strong project management skills, with an acute attention to detail
  • Ability to organize and communicate complex information. 
  • Experience drafting and negotiating license agreements is preferred but not required.

Interpersonal Requirements:   

  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and set work priorities with minimal supervision.
  • Establish and manage many projects and relationships simultaneously across a broad range of innovations and markets.
  • Ability to interact with academic scientists and business executives.
  • Strong team-oriented focus.
  • Ability to build rapport and trust with faculty, colleagues, and stakeholders.

Commercialization Manager Applicants

UNC Chapel Hill has exclusively retained Gardner Innovation Search Partners to manage this search. Gardner Innovation Search Partners is the top technology transfer recruiter in the world, and is committed to presenting a diverse slate of candidates who possess the skills, expertise, and enthusiasm to thrive in this role.

Interested applicants should send their resume and any questions to:

Lisa Rooney, Recruiter
(740) 251-7390

Gardner Innovation Search Partners is committed to diversity in both people and ideas. Read more about our commitment to diversity and inclusion.