Meet Our Team

NCSU_NC_State_OTT_Staff

Kelly Sexton, Ph.D., Director

Dr_Kelly_Sextonkelly_sexton@ncsu.edu

Kelly is responsible for directing all aspects of the office, focusing on strategy, transactional efficiency as well as administration of the $2.5 M Chancellor’s Innovation Fund.  Kelly has served as an Executive in Residence in NC State’s Poole College of Management HiTEC startup creation program and serves on the Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network steering committee.

Kelly holds a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Georgia and a Ph.D. in Molecular Pathology from the University of California, San Diego where she was supported by a fellowship from the California Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  She completed her postdoctoral studies at Stanford University where she was awarded a fellowship from the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.   Kelly worked in the Office of Technology Licensing at Stanford University prior to joining NC State in 2007.

Dinesh Divakaran, Ph.D., Associate Director

dinesh_divakaran@ncsu.edu

As Associate Director, Dinesh leads a team of professionals managing innovation, strategizing intellectual property assets, licensing technologies, facilitating startups and developing strategic alliances in engineering, textiles, physical & mathematical sciences, natural resources, design and education. He also directs commercialization efforts in software, copyrights and data across the university. Dinesh also holds appointment as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering at NC State. Prior to joining NC State, he worked in technology transfer at the Texas A&M University System and earlier at the University of South Florida, where he also served as an Adjunct Faculty of Electrical Engineering.

 

Dinesh earned his Ph.D. & M.S. in Electrical Engineering from University of South Florida and B.E. in Electronics Engineering from University of Mumbai. A member of IEEE and AAAS, he has been elected to the Sigma Xi, Tau Beta Pi and Eta Kappa Nu honor societies. Dinesh is also a member of AUTM and LES.

Wade Fulghum, Assistant Director, Venture Development

Wade Fulghumwade_fulghum@ncsu.edu

As Assistant Director for Venture Development Wade leads the efforts to launch and support startup companies from NC State that are based on University intellectual property. Wade brings eight years of experience advising companies and has served as a Technology Commercialization & Development Counselor for the North Carolina Small Business Technology Development Center (SBTDC), the Assistant Director for the Economic Development Partnership for NC State University, and as a business advisor for the Economic Development Association’s University Center for NC State. Wade has experience as a small business owner and in commercial finance and insurance with a Fortune 100 company. Wade leads a software development team that works to commercialize software for startup companies.  Wade has brought in over $3 million to NC State through grant writing serving as the principal investigator and co-principal investigator on both State and Federally funded research projects. Wade cofounded the Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster and served as the first Chair of the Entrepreneurship Working Group.  Wade received his Bachelors of Finance from the University of Florida as well as a Masters of Business Administration from Hawaii Pacific University focusing on Organizational Change Management and is a veteran of the US Army.

Jeffrey Bissette, Assistant Director, Business & Licensing Compliance

Jeffrey Bissettejeffrey_bissette@ncsu.edu

Jeff earned a BA in Business Administration at North Carolina State University in 1992. Prior to joining the OTT, he worked as a Contract Negotiator for industry funded research agreements in the Office of Sponsored Programs and Regulatory Compliance Services. As Assistant Director for Business and Licensing Compliance, Jeff manages the OTT’s government reporting and licensee diligence.

Amanda Ottaway, Assistant Director, Operations and Strategy

Amanda Ottawayamanda_ottaway@ncsu.edu

Amanda serves as the Assistant Director, Operations and Strategy performing a variety of duties including informational input into the OTT’s Knowledge Sharing Database System (KSS). She helps manage the uploading of patent documentation, invention disclosures, agreement summaries and IP correspondence into the KSS system.

Kultaran ChohanKultaran Chohan, Ph.D., Senior Licensing Associate

kultaran_chohan@ncsu.edu

Kultaran earned a Ph.D. in Genetics from NC State University, a MS in biology from University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and a LL.M. in Intellectual Property and Technology Law from Washington University in St. Louis, MO.  He is a member of the New York Bar Association and is licensed as an attorney in New York.  Prior to joining the Office of Technology Transfer at NCSU as a licensing associate, Kultaran worked for over a year first as an intern and then as a licensing assistant with this office.  Kultaran is well versed in intellectual property matters and has a strong technical background in genetics, microbiology, biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology, plant biology, plant breeding, and manages NCSU’s Ag-Biotech and plant variety portfolio.

Brian EllerBrian Eller, J.D., Senior Licensing Associate

brian_eller@ncsu.edu

Brian earned a BS in Materials Engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo and a J.D. from U.C. Davis School of Law.  Prior to joining the OTT, he completed an internship at the U.C. Davis InnovationAccess, a unit of the Office of Research, in addition to an externship at the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Technology Center Unit #2800, where he helped examine patent applications in the field of semiconductors, electrical and optical systems, and components.  During law school, Brian spent a summer as a judicial extern for the Honorable Charles R. Wolle, Senior Judge for the Southern District of Iowa.  Brian has a strong technical background in electronics, semiconductors, telecommunications, nanotechnology, and medical devices.

R. Casey Boutwell, Ph.D., Licensing Associate

R. Casey Boutwellcasey_boutwell@ncsu.edu

Casey earned his Ph.D. in Optics from the University of Central Florida, Orlando and BS in Physics from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA.  Following his doctorate, he supported the University of Central Florida’s OTT by reviewing and advancing technologies ranging from biophysics to materials science.  Caseyalso served an Orlando-based tech-commercialization start-up as Marketing and Business Development Manager before joining NCSU.  Casey is the lead case manager for inventions from the departments of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Nuclear Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, and non-life science research centers and institutes in the College of Science.

 

Garth Mashmann, J.D., Licensing Associate

Garth_Mashmanngarth_mashmann@ncsu.edu

Garth earned a BS in Biomedical Engineering degree from Boston University and a J.D. from Syracuse University.  As a member of the OTT Licensing team Garth is responsible for working with departments from the College of Engineering, as well as the College of Sciences.  Prior to joining NC State University, Garth worked in technology transfer at The Ohio State University and at Syracuse University, primarily with engineering technologies.  Garth is a licensed attorney and practiced law in New York at an intellectual property law firm.

 

Ashley Stallings, J.D., Licensing Analyst

Ashley_Stallingsashley_stallings@ncsu.edu

Ashley earned a B.S. in Chemistry at Appalachian State University and a J.D. from Campbell University’s Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law.  Prior to joining the OTT team as a licensing analyst, she worked as an intern in the office for over a year. While in law school, Ashley completed additional internships with the Law Enforcement Liaison Division of the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office as well as with SAS Institute Inc., and was senior research assistant in the area of education law.  Ashley has a strong intellectual property background and technical expertise in chemistry and plant breeding, and manages the plant variety portfolio. 

 

Raghav Narayanan, Licensing Analyst

Raghavendran_Narayananrnaraya2@ncsu.edu
Raghav earned his M.S in Electrical Engineering from NC State University. Prior to joining the NCSU technology transfer team, as a Licensing Analyst, worked as an intern for nearly a year at the OTT.  His unique academic background has provided him with opportunities to work on technologies related to Engineering and Design.  Raghav brings a wealth of experience and knowledge from the IT industry by working in projects involving System-Level Programming and Web Architectures. As a licensing analyst, analyzes inventions and technologies revolving  around Electrical and Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Biomedical Engineering, Software Development and, Software Due Diligence. 

 

Warren “Gerry” SasserWarren “Gerry” Sasser, Senior Agreements Manager

gerry_sasser@ncsu.edu

Gerry received his Bachelors of Business Administration from Memphis State University as well as a Masters of Business Administration from Campbell University. Prior to joining the OTT, Gerry worked as Director of Research Programs Services for the College of Textiles.  As the Senior Agreements Manager, he manages and negotiates all miscellaneous agreements for the office including Material Transfer Agreements, Confidentiality Agreements, Interinstitutional Agreements and Collaborative Research Agreements. Gerry also manages the Industry Compliance function with regards to  IP developed under Sponsored Project Agreements.

 

Marie Blanchard, Executive Assistant to the Director

Marie Blanchardmarie_blanchard@ncsu.edu

Marie received her BA in Sociology with a Criminal Justice option from NC State University, where she has worked for more than 28 years. Prior to joining the OTT, she served as the Executive Assistant to the Director in the Credit Programs & Summer Sessions office. In addition to her duties as Executive Assistant, Marie serves as the Intellectual Property Committee administrator.  Marie also serves as the HR rep for the office.

Roberta Terry, Senior Financial Manager

Roberta Terryroberta_terry@ncsu.edu

Roberta received her BA of Business Management from Warner Southern College. She has over 15 years experience in finance and compliance. Prior to joining the OTT, Roberta worked as a Fiscal Manager in the Contracts and Grants unit of NC State University where she handled State and Federal Contracts and Grants. As the Senior Financial Manager, her current duties include royalty distribution as well as financial reporting compliance.

Melicia Ryles, Financial Manager

Melicia Rylesmelicia_ryles@ncsu.edu

Melicia received her AAS in Business Administration with a focus in Accounting from Hardbarger Junior College of Business. She brings over 15 years of extensive experience in finance and collections to the OTT.  Prior to joining NC State University, Melicia was employed with Cigna HealthCare as the Delinquency Coordinator where she developed and implemented strategic collection procedures for the Research Triangle area.  As the Financial Manager for the OTT, her current duties include managing accounts receivable and collections within the University’s established policies.

Jodi Falk, Patent Administrator

Jodi_Falkjodi_falk@ncsu.edu

Jodi received her BS in Criminal Justice from Mount Scenario College, Wisconsin.  Prior to joining the OTT, Jodi worked in several investigative areas for over 15 years, followed by over 8 years in law firms, primarily in intellectual property and litigation.  As the OTT’s Patent Administrator, she manages patent correspondence, works with inventors to complete patent documents, and tracks various aspects of the patent process using the KSS system.

Nicholas LeBlancNicholas LeBlanc, Ph.D., Agreements & Data Integrity Specialist

nicholas_leblanc@ncsu.edu

Nicholas received his Ph.D. in Slavic Linguistics from UNC-Chapel Hill.  Prior to joining the OTT Nicholas served as Registrar in the Department of Anthropology at UNC-Chapel Hill.  He has experience in database management and development in educational, non-profit, and commercial settings.  Nicholas performs a number of quality control functions in the OTT’s Knowledge Sharing Database System (KSS). He assists with the processing of invention disclosures, agreements, and patent documentation to ensure the overall consistency and accuracy of KSS data.

Wendy Womble, Diligence Specialist

Wendy Womblewendy_womble@ncsu.edu

Wendy brings 20 years of experience in finance and administrative support to the OTT. Prior to joining the OTT, Wendy worked as an Accounting Technician at NCSU’s McKimmon Center for Extension and Continuing Education where she maintained accounting records, prepared invoices, payroll, receipts, and deposits. Her current duties as Diligence Specialist  include working directly with company/licensee liaisons to address their license agreement diligence obligations.  She reviews reports from licensees against agreement milestones and reporting obligations.  Wendy also maintains and tracks aging debt by companies, manages collection efforts associated with overdue invoices, and works with the Assistant Director to audit licensees for missed diligence obligations