Team

Michael P. Straightiff

Executive Director
straightiff@virginia.edu
(434) 982 3709

The UVA Licensing & Ventures Group Executive Director Michael Straightiff was appointed in September 2011, after leading the Case Western Reserve University’s Technology Transfer Office in biomedical engineering commercialization for four years. Shortly after arriving at LVG, Michael adopted a new strategic direction for the organization emphasizing the commercialization of university technologies through a more judicious approach to licensing deals and fostering relationships with UVA inventors to help them launch new ventures.

Michael was the optimum candidate for the position based on his experience, philosophy and leadership skills, which he continues to demonstrate daily. He oversaw the rebrand of the organization from The Patent Foundation to the Licensing & Ventures Group in 2012, and has tactically hired a leadership team of industry experts that have been instrumental in elevating the work of the organization. Michael consistently engages with university audiences through speaking engagements and charismatically expresses his vision for LVG among UVA leadership which led to the inception of the $10 million UVA Seed Fund in 2015.

Michael’s work in building the organization’s infrastructure supports his initial goal of shaping LVG to become a university leader in the technology transfer space. LVG is poised for success as it moves into its next phase while continuing to provide support to the more than 50 active startups launched from discoveries made by UVA faculty, staff and students.

As a result of Michael’s leadership, LVG has recorded its highest number of license and option agreements and invention disclosures in the history of the organization for two years in a row in fiscal years 2015-2016.

Prior to joining LVG, Michael managed high-profile research, development and commercialization partnerships with several large biomedical technology companies for Case Western Reserve University. He was also involved in the launch of several companies in coordination with Case Technology Ventures and the Cleveland investment community.

Having grown up in nearby Front Royal, VA, Michael barely steps out of the LVG office without running into someone he knows. He has earned a reputation around UVA Grounds as having the most jovial headshot (evidence above), and when he’s not steering the LVG ship, he can be found spending time with his wife and young daughter.

Education

M.B.A., Case Western Reserve University

M.A., Public Policy, George Mason University

B.S., Biomedical Engineering, Case Western Reserve University

Professional Memberships

Academic Licensing Community of Virginia

Association of University Technology Managers

Biomedical Engineering Society

Charlottesville Business Innovation Council (CBIC)

Licensing Executives Society