Jim Linder named to lead University of Nebraska innovation and economic competitiveness initiatives
University of Nebraska President James B. Milliken has announced the appointment of Dr. James Linder as senior associate to the president for innovation and economic competitiveness and president of the University Technology Development Corp. Linder currently serves as CEO of UNeMed, the technology transfer arm of the University of Nebraska Medical Center, as well as professor of pathology and microbiology at UNMC.

In his new role, Linder will lead university-wide efforts to promote innovation, public-private partnerships, technology development and commercialization. As president of UTDC, he will work closely with university-related technology development organizations that are under the UTDC umbrella – UNeMed, NUTech Ventures, the Peter Kiewit Institute Technology Development Corp., and the Nebraska Innovation Campus Development Corp.

UTDC is a separate corporation created by the Board of Regents to oversee technology development and commercialization of innovations, ideas and intellectual property developed at the University of Nebraska. Ken Jones of Half Moon Bay, Calif., a UNL alumnus who is CEO of Globe Wireless and chairman of the UTDC board, said, "The UTDC board is extraordinarily pleased that Dr. Linder has agreed to lead UTDC's efforts to promote technology development and commercialization within the university. His academic and corporate background is ideal for the role as president of UTDC."

Milliken said that a key part of Linder’s role will be to develop policies and practices to encourage interested faculty to work with the private sector to capitalize on ideas with strong commercial potential. He will begin his new role May 15, and will split his time between Omaha and Lincoln, working with faculty on all four NU campuses.

“Jim Linder understands how to bring university researchers together with the private sector to transform innovative ideas into products and processes that can be the foundation of new companies and new jobs in Nebraska,” Milliken said. “With his experience in both the private sector and in an academic environment, he is uniquely qualified to take the University of Nebraska’s technology development efforts to a new level.”

Dr. Harold M. Maurer, chancellor of UNMC, said, "Jim is an academic with strong entrepreneurial skills who will be an outstanding addition to President Milliken’s team to enhance the intellectual property development of the University system."

Linder served for 12 years (1995-2007) as a corporate officer and chief medical officer for Cytyc Corp., a leading manufacturer of diagnostic products and surgical devices. He is currently chief medical officer of Constitution Medical Investors, a Boston-based private investment firm, and also consults with or serves on the boards of several private biotechnology companies.

"I have tremendous pride in the university and the State of Nebraska,” Linder said. “This is a special time where the university and the private sector can accomplish great things that will benefit our students and the citizens of Nebraska. The opportunity to combine the resources of the faculty with the dynamic corporate sector to drive economic growth in Nebraska is exciting.”

Linder is a graduate of Iowa State University and UNMC, where he has been on the faculty full- or part-time since 1983. He has also held a number of administrative positions, including associate dean for academic affairs, and interim dean of the College of Medicine. From 2005-09 he was associate vice chancellor for research. He has authored more than 150 publications and five textbooks.

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