University of Vermont

Office of Technology Commercialization

Invention 2 Venture (I2V)

2016 UVM I2V Conference

Thursday, April 7, 2016
1:00 - 5:00 pm

University of Vermont, Dudley H. Davis Center
Silver Maple Ballroom

Map and Directions


This is the 11th year of our half-day conference!

The conference pulls together dynamic experts, academic researchers, students, entrepreneurs and business leaders from across Vermont and New England to talk about how to protect, develop and finance your ideas. They share resources, what's worked for them... and what can work for you.

The conference will feature twelve roundtable discussion topics designed to increase networking and discussion.

1:00 Welcome: Provost David V. Rosowsky, PhD, PE, FASCE
UVM Research Awards: VP for Research Richard Galbraith, MD, PhD
1:20 Keynote: Robert Andosca, PhD, UVM Alumnus, & Co-Founder, President and CEO of Microgen Systems, Inc.
"Power to the Internet of Things"
2:00 Roundtable Session 1
2:30 Networking & Snacks
2:45 Roundtable Session 2
3:15 Networking & Snacks
3:30 Roundtable Session 3
4:00 Mixer (1 drink ticket provided)

Dr. Robert G. AndoscaDr. Robert G. Andosca
"Power to the Internet of Things"

Dr. Robert G. Andosca is the co-founder, President and CEO of MicroGen Systems, Inc. Dr. Andosca started MicroGen in 2007. He has over 25 years of professional experience in the semiconductor and MicroElectroMechnical Systems (MEMS) industries, including operations/ management roles, business development and lead technical engineering positions. Dr. Andosca has held senior positions at the Smart System Technology Center (formerly Infotonics), Lilliputian Systems, Umicore, Corning IntelliSense, Clare, and Lockheed Martin.

In 2012, Dr. Andosca received his Ph.D. in Materials Science Engineering from The University of Vermont. His dissertation research topic was on theoretical and experimental studies of piezoelectric MEMS vibrational energy harvesters (PZEH). He holds many patents and has published many papers on PZEH devices. Dr. Andosca has been an invited keynote speaker all over the world on the subject of energy harvesting.


When you register, you have the option of choosing three (out of twelve) topics below. Each roundtable discussion is 30 minutes, with a 15-minute buffer for finishing conversations and networking between sessions.

Finding the Money
Discover the wide range of financing options available to startups in Vermont.

Kim Brearley, Angel Investor
Kim Brearley is an angel investor and experienced investment professional having worked in private equity and banking in multiple countries in sub-Saharan Africa after starting her career in international development with a focus on small business development in Tanzania. More recently she worked at Designbook in Burlington helping startups to raise money by selling private securities to angel investors and VCs. She has been on the founding team of two startups over the last ten years and enjoys building companies and generally making things work better.

H. Kenneth Merritt, Jr., Merritt & Merritt
Not only does Ken lead Merritt & Merritt's transactional corporate practice, he is also deeply involved in the local entrepreneurial community and active in multiple professional organizations and various angel and investor groups throughout the United States. He is a Founding Member of Slow Money Alliance and Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility, Board Member of Investors' Circle, as well as Board Member and Managing Director of North Country Angels, Vermont's only angel investment group.

Janice St. Onge, Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund Flexible Capital
Janice St. Onge is President of the VSJF Flexible Capital Fund, L3C and Deputy Director of the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund. Janice brings economic and business development as well as financial expertise to the organization, having served in the technology and financial services industries, as well as higher education and state government sectors during her 25-year career. Janis has 10 years of experience at Peoples United Bank in Connecticut serving in retail management, commercial real estate lending (managing a $21 million portfolio) and organizational development roles during her tenure there.

Explore these two programs affiliated with government agencies that have 2.2 billion dollars set aside annually to support the development of technologies by small businesses.

Ian Rutherford, Vermont Small Business Development Center
Ian Rutherford works with Vermont's small businesses, colleges and universities to help strengthen their technology readiness and deepen VtSBDC's relationships with young entrepreneurs. Rutherford went to VtSBDC following a 35-year career as a consultant in technology commercialization and management for industry, government, national laboratories and high growth companies. Since moving to Vermont in 1991 he has been active in the development of early-stage companies in the technology sector.

Stephen Farrington, Transcend Engineering
Stephen Farrington, P.E., founded Transcend Engineering and is the company's Chief Executive and an owner. He is a graduate-degreed engineer with over 20 years of experience in R&D of sensors and data acquisition systems related to environmental, hydrological, and geotechnical, subsurface investigation and monitoring. He has invented two fully commercialized patented systems for subsurface geo-environmental characterization and has authored an ASTM standard and contributed to a standard handbook of subsurface field investigation.

Funding the Initial Commercialization of UVM Innovations
Learn about two internal avenues to obtain early-stage funding to facilitate the discovery-to-innovation-to-commercialization process.

Eric Gagnon, SPARKvt
Eric Gagnon has worked alongside Mercedes Rincon to administer the SPARK-VT program since its inception in the Department of Medicine five years ago. This experience has exposed each of them to elements of the innovation-to-commercialization lifecycle as they strive to facilitate and accelerate the process of moving discoveries to the marketplace. The two have assumed active entrepreneurial mentorship roles both on campus and throughout the community as they focus their energy on fostering an innovation ecosystem that encourages collaboration among faculty, students, staff, and community members.

Mercedes Rincon, SPARKvt
Dr. Mercedes Rincon is a professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Vermont. She has over 135 publications, many in top journals such as Science, Cell, and Immunity. She has acted as a consultant for a number of pharma companies including Pharmacia, Novartis, and Roche. Dr. Rincon is the primary inventor of two issued patents and two additional filed patents. She is an internationally recognized immunologist with expertise in broad areas of research such as signaling pathways, allergy/asthma, arthritis and influenza infection. Her research has been well-funded for almost eighteen years.

Kerry Swift, UVM Office of Technology Commercialization
Kerry Swift has been OTC's Technology Licensing Officer since arriving at UVM from MIT in 2004. She also served as OTC's Interim Director from 2011 to 2012. Kerry facilitates the disclosure of new technologies and their transfer to both established and start-up companies for commercialization. She also supports UVM's industry-related research activities with her experience in negotiating funding and research support agreements with both large and small companies. She holds an M.S. in Molecular and Microbiology from Tufts University and graduated magna cum laude in biochemistry from the University of New Hampshire.

Lessons Learned: Managing Fear
Making the transition from scientist to businessman can be intimidating. Learn from our keynote speaker how he made that transition, and thrived.

Robert Andosca, Microgen Systems
Dr. Robert G. Andosca is the co-founder, President and CEO of MicroGen Systems, Inc. Dr. Andosca started MicroGen in 2007. He has over 25 years of professional experience in the semiconductor and MicroElectroMechnical Systems (MEMS) industries, including operations/ management roles, business development and lead technical engineering positions. Dr. Andosca has held senior positions at the Smart System Technology Center (formerly Infotonics), Lilliputian Systems, Umicore, Corning IntelliSense, Clare, and Lockheed Martin.

How to Speak Science to Business
Entrepreneurship is as much about communication as it is about the technology. This roundtable will focus on making the translation.

Becky Stoughton, Fuentek
Becky Stoughton is the Co-Vice President of Fuentek. She received a BS in Mechanical Engineering & Engineering/Public Policy from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA from the University of Texas at Dallas. Stoughton has 20 years of leadership experience as an entrepreneur and technology transfer executive. Since joining Fuentek in 2013, she has been instrumental in identifying strategic partnership and collaborative R&D opportunities; developing and implementing branding and marketing strategies; assisting in deal negotiations; and training budding entrepreneurs.

Pitching and Pitch Decks
There is an art to creating business pitches. Learn how to answer the key question: Why is your solution to a problem better than others?

  • Cairn Cross, FreshTracks
  • Eli Moulton, The Moulton Law Group

Cairn Cross, FreshTracks
Cairn Cross is a co-founder of FreshTracks Capital and serves as a Managing Director of the Fund. He serves on the Boards of Vermont Teddy Bear, NativeEnergy, Faraday & Budnitz Bicycles and is an Observer to the Board at SunCommon. He is also a Lecturer for the University of Vermont and Champlain College, focusing on business, entrepreneurship and venture capital. In 2011, the U.S. Small Business Administration named Cairn its Vermont, New England and National Financial Services Champion. He earned a B.S. from Montana State University and an MBA from New Hampshire College (now Southern New Hampshire University).

Eli Moulton, The Moulton Law Group
Eli Moulton works with a variety of entrepreneurs and businesses, providing corporate legal counsel, with a particular emphasis on helping early stage businesses. From technology start-ups suitable for venture capital to local Vermont businesses pursuing a community supported enterprise model, Eli combines his legal experience with a strong background in finance and accounting to structure transactions to help businesses succeed in raising capital. Recently referred to as the "go to guy for creative financing" in Amy Cortese's recent book, Locavesting. Eli has worked extensively with businesses throughout Vermont and across the East Coast.

Intellectual Property: Patents, Copyright & More!
Intellectual property remains the keystone to many successful startups. Find out the basics.

Alfonzo I. Cutaia, Hodgson Russ
Al Cutaia focuses on patent practice in the general electrical, software, and mechanical arts, as well as trademark and copyright prosecution. His practice covers a number of technical disciplines, including electronics, software, mobile devices, spintronics, medical devices, dental devices, optics, metrology, industrial mechanical systems, and business methods. Prior to joining Hodgson Russ, Al served as an intellectual property assistant for the Office of Science, Technology Transfer, and Economic Outreach at the University at Buffalo.

Ranjana Kadle, Hodgson Russ
Ranjana Kadle practices in all areas of intellectual property (IP) with particular emphasis on patentability evaluations, patent prosecution, post-grant challenges, related opinion work, and licensing in the biotechnology and chemical fields. She works closely with clients to identify protectable IP, and provides practical advice to clients on protection of IP and building and management of global IP portfolios. She also advises clients on a wide variety of IP-related topics, including due-diligence investigations and trademark matters. She lectures frequently on topics related to latest developments in IP law, patents, and licensing.

Lessons Learned: The Woodchuck's Guide to VT Startups
Learn from the experience of one young entrepreneur's journey back to Vermont to start a company.

Kyle Clark, Designbook
Kyle Clark is a founding partner of He leads the teams of programmers, designers and strategists who are streamlining the way startups and investors come together online. Prior to starting Designbook, Kyle was the Director of Engineering at Dynapower. In this role, he led the programmers, engineers and technicians responsible for the development of all Dynapower product lines. He attended Harvard University’s School of Applied Mathematics and Engineering, where he was awarded the 2004 Engineering Thesis of the Year award for his work in flight dynamics and control algorithms.

Setting Up Your Company in Vermont
Find out the legal aspects you need to consider when getting your company started in Vermont.

Jeffery McMahan, Dinse, Knapp & McAndrew
Mr. McMahan, who serves as the firm's President and Managing Partner, is a corporate and intellectual property lawyer, advising businesses on issues related to formation, mergers and acquisitions, raising capital, technology licensing, trademarks and copyrights. Mr. McMahan's clients range from entrepreneurial start-ups to publicly-held companies. He has particular experience representing software vendors and purchasers in the negotiation of computer system implementation, license and support agreements. Mr. McMahan also advises clients on the selection of trademarks and assists with the registration of their trademarks.

Building Your Company in Vermont
Discover what business resources are available to startups in Vermont.

Bonnie Reese, Reese Consulting
Bonnie Reese is the CEO of Reese Consulting where she works with companies involved with the Smart Grid to set up business development best practices and strategies that will support strong levels of growth. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Natural Resources at the University of Vermont. Her research focuses on leveraging entrepreneurship to drive innovation in natural resource preservation and management. As part of this research, she will be working with key stakeholders to develop the strategic plan for the Clean Energy Fund at the Office of Sustainability.

Spencer Newman, Green Mountain Insight
Spencer Newman has nearly twenty years of experience in helping companies develop and execute growth and financial strategies in new and emerging markets. He has held positions as CEO of Jvillage Network, Director of the TastyGram division at Vermont Teddy Bear, and CEO/ founder of Adventurous Traveler, which was sold to the Away Network in 2000. Spencer is currently President of Green Mountain Insight, a strategic planning and financial services firm providing ongoing CFO services to high growth companies, and actively serves on several boards including the Burlington Electric Commission (Chairman) and the Nathaniel Group.

Co-Development Models between UVM & VT Businesses
Find out how reaching out early to partner with industry can help you to develop concepts and prototypes.

Marguerite Dibble, GameTheory
Marguerite Dibble is the president and CEO of GameTheory where she provides team and project management, sales and customer acquisition, creative direction, user interface design, gamification consulting and project proposal services. GameTheory uses game design toolkits and mindsets to tackle challenging real-world problems through app development and strategic consulting. GameTheory has worked to provide unique game-based solutions across healthcare, energy, and financial sectors.

Elizabeth Pope, Ph.D., UVM
Lizzy Pope is an Assistant Professor in the UVM Nutrition and Food Sciences Department, as well as the Director of the Didactic Program in Dietetics. Her research interests focus on integrating principles of behavioral economics (the science of irrational decision making) into nutrition and exercise choices to nudge people towards healthier decisions. She received a BA in Psychological and Brain Sciences from Dartmouth College in 2005, an MS in Applied Physiology and Nutrition from the Teachers College Columbia University in 2008, and a PhD in Animal, Nutrition and Food Science from the University of Vermont in 2013.

Manufacturing Your Technology in Vermont
Explore how to "make it" in Vermont.

Patricia Giavara, Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center
Patricia Giavara is the Assistant Center Director at VMEC. She leads VMEC's Innovation and Growth Services development and has worked with many manufacturing companies and other organizations to accelerate growth by teaching and coaching a system for innovations including new customers, new products and services, and improved processes. She has over twenty years of manufacturing experience with larger corporations in Process Engineering, Quality, Supply Chain, Line Leadership, and Engineering and Plant Manager positions. She graduated with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Dan Harvey, UVM Office of VP for Research & Burlington Generator
Dan Harvey is the Director of Operations for the UVM Vice President for Research, as well as Assistant Dean of the Graduate College. Harvey is responsible for oversight of and coordination with the administrative units that make up UVM's research enterprise, as well as the day-to-day operations of the College. He joined UVM in 2005 after a twenty-year broadcasting career at Vermont PBS. He currently serves as the president of the board of directors for Burlington Generator, a combination of artist studios, classroom, and business incubator focused on making things. He also serves on the boards of Burlington City Arts and BTV Ignite.


If you have any questions about this year's conference, please contact the UVM Office Of Technology Commercialization at 802-656-8780 or