University of Hawaii announces finalists for OTTED Director

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Michelle Isa, (808) 956-5006
Office of the VP for Research and Innovation
Eric R. Matsunaga, (808) 956-5588
Director, Research & Administrative Operations, Office of the VP for Research and Innovation
Posted: Jul 8, 2014

Fred B. Holt
Fred B. Holt
Neil F. Veloso
Neil F. Veloso

HONOLULU – The University of Hawai‘i System is pleased to announce that two candidates for the position of Director, Office of Technology Transfer and Economic Development (OTTED), have been invited to visit UH and to make public presentations to interested students, faculty, staff, community members and the general public.

The candidates are:

Fred B. Holt; PhD, MBA
Director of Strategic Initiatives
University of Washington Center for Commercialization

For the last nine years Fred Holt has played a major role in transforming the technology transfer function at the University of Washington’s Center for Commercialization (UW C4C).  He has defined and implemented most of the elements in the new innovation ecosystem for UW researchers, including the entrepreneurs-in-residence program, the industry relations program, a start-up incubator, and a venture fund for technology start-ups. 

Dr. Holt has strengthened the university’s role in statewide economic development, advocating for the central role of the university in an innovation economy and pursuing specific collaborative opportunities.  These initiatives include a center for students to develop portfolio work for games and digital media, an incubator for medical device start-ups, a certificate program to develop leadership for the native tribes, and a service to facilitate the export of medical technologies.  These efforts have required strong effective partnerships among multiple parties.

Previously, Dr. Holt worked in Boeing’s IT research group for eleven years, contributing solutions for new sensor technologies, computer networking and data mining.  He is a co-inventor on twelve Boeing patents.  In 2001, he co-founded a technology spin-out company based on a multicast solution developed at Boeing.

Dr. Holt received his PhD in mathematics from the University of Washington and an MBA from Seattle University.  He has co-authored a book chapter on peer-to-peer networks and 17 technical papers.  Dr. Holt continues to study polytopes and the prime numbers; and is currently an advisor to three technology start-up companies.

Neil F. Veloso, MBA
Director of Commercialization – Strategic Alliances
Cleveland Clinic Innovations (CCI)

Neil Veloso primarily focuses on innovation management within both the Cleveland Clinic and its Healthcare Innovation Alliance Program.  He has over 20 years of experience in biotechnology and technology commercialization.

Prior to joining CCI, Mr. Veloso was senior licensing manager at the Case Western Reserve University Technology Transfer Office.  There he sourced, negotiated and executed deals with pharmaceutical, medical device and diagnostic companies.  Additionally, he was involved in medical imaging and pharmaceutical startup companies.

As a research associate at Athersys, his research and development work centered on process development of therapeutic proteins and small molecule drug screening.

Mr. Veloso received his BA in biology from John Hopkins University; and earned both his MBA and MS in environmental health sciences from Case Western University.

Public Presentation Schedule

Fred B. Holt:
Friday, July 18, 2014, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m., C-MORE Hale conference room

Neil F. Veloso:
Tuesday, July 29, 2014, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m., C-MORE Hale conference room

The topic for the public presentations will be, “The Future of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at a Public University.”

“The Search Advisory Committee did a tremendous job of identifying two exceptional candidates to be our finalists for the OTTED director,” said Vance Roley, Dean of the Shidler College of Business at UH Mānoa and Chair of the OTTED Director Search.  “This leadership position is critical to UH’s entrepreneurial and commercialization efforts, so we hope all those with a vested interest from our UH ohana and our local business community can come out to meet these well-qualified individuals.”

“The next director of OTTED will be leading a department that will be an integral component to the success of the Hawai‘i Innovation Initiative,” added UH Vice President for Research and Innovation Vassilis L. Syrmos. “We will be counting on OTTED to assist cohorts from our soon-to-be launched proof-of-concept center venture accelerator program to fully exploit their UH-owned technologies commercially.” 

For more information about the search process, please visit:

For more information about the Office of Technology Transfer and Economic Development at the University of Hawai‘i, please visit