Meet Jericho Wilkerson, KCV Licensing & New Ventures Manager
Jericho Wilkerson (he/him) joined the KCV team in January 2023 as Licensing & New Ventures Manager. We're excited to welcome Jericho to the team and asked him a few questions about his new role.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and why you wanted to be a part of Kentucky Commercialization Ventures?
I'm from a small town in western Kentucky, where I witnessed firsthand the need for the opportunities and resources that Kentucky Commercialization Ventures (KCV) provides, and when I saw the exciting things that KCV is doing for the state's innovation ecosystem, I felt that I needed to be a part of it. I hope to further contribute to KCV's efforts to create a supportive environment in Kentucky that fosters creativity, encourages collaboration, and helps bring new products and services to the market.
How did you get interested in tech-transfer and commercialization?
I started out working in technology transfer at the University of Louisville Innovation & Commercialization as a bioengineering student and had yet to decide my career trajectory. Little did I know that I would soon fall in love with the commercialization process and develop a passion for being a part of translational research and entrepreneurship. It was then that I decided to pursue a career in this field and worked with my supervisor to tailor my responsibilities so that I got to learn and benefit from even more relevant experiences that I'm eager to leverage for KCV.
What are you most excited about in your new position?
There is much that I'm looking forward to, but I'm most excited about the chance to work with such a talented team. It's amazing what the KCV team has accomplished in the past few years. The impact that they've had on Kentucky's innovation infrastructure is tremendous, and I'm thrilled to be able to partner with and learn from them. With this team, I am confident that we will be able to achieve even greater things and help grow the commonwealth's network of organizations, individuals, and resources that come together to support the diffusion of new ideas and technologies.
Why would you say it’s important for Kentucky higher education institutions to explore commercialization?
It is important because it can lead to the development of new products and services, create jobs, and boost economic growth in the state. When colleges and universities commercialize their work, they can turn their ideas and research findings into marketable products and services, which can be sold or licensed to companies and organizations and improve the lives of customers. This can generate revenue for the institutions, which can be used to fund further research and development. Additionally, commercializing research can also lead to the creation of new startups and small businesses, thus promoting economic expansion and job opportunities.
Can you share a little-known fact about yourself?
I'm fluent in five languages.