UAF is Alaska’s preeminent research university. The mission of UAF's Office of Intellectual Property and Commercialization (OIPC) is to encourage broad practical application of UAF research for public benefit to support UAF's research, education, and outreach mission into the future through the following activities:
- Supporting the education and research mission of UAF by fostering creativity and innovation
- Encouraging and assisting individuals associated with UAF in the protection, licensing, and commercialization of their discoveries
- Initiating and sustaining cooperation and collaboration between UAF and businesses and industry, especially those based in Alaska
- Ensuring the equitable distribution of royalties and other monetary benefits derived from commercial application of intellectual property
- Advancing economic development objectives for Alaska and the nation
The Vice Chancellor for Research (VCR) Office is interested in your comments, concerns and suggestions regarding its units. All submissions will be sent directly to the acting VCR Assistant, ensuring that your comment is handled appropriately and promptly. Participation is voluntary and you may remain anonymous. Click here to share your thoughts and concerns.
Intellectual Property and Contracts Director
Mark Billingsley has worked in Alaska as an engineer and an attorney. His current position combines both backgrounds to advance UA research and commercialization efforts. Mark also is a registered patent attorney and a member of the Alaska Bar Association.
Amanda Byrd is the Outreach Coordinator for OIPC. Before working with OIPC, Amanda was the managing editor of Mushing Magazine for three years. In addition to her current role, she is the part-time marketing manager at Goldstream Sports. Her professional education includes a MS in Renewable Energy from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and a BS Natural Resources Management from University of New England, Australia.
Originally hailing from Australia, Amanda grew up in Sydney where prior to her college experience she trained race horses there and in Japan. After falling in love with the North American forests through a year-long exchange program to Colorado State University and a summer experience as a Park Ranger in Grant Teton National Park, she moved to Alaska in search of adventure. She is currently a reformed sprint dog musher who enjoys running (but don’t call her a runner) and has participated in Fairbanks' Equinox Marathon several times. Other favorite past times include mountain and road cycling, floating rivers, baking, cooking, and writing.
Alexis joined the Office of Intellectual Property and Commercialization in 2018. She is in charge of purchasing, helps out with coordinating events & travel, and supports the growing programming now offered through OIPC. She is thankful to have a wonderful job, two beautiful & intelligent girls, a giant dog, and a pretty amazing husband.
The Intellectual Property Advisory Committee
The Intellectual Property Advisory Committee (IPAC) advises OIPC on a full range of matters related to intellectual property and commercialization including whether to pursue a patent for any particular technology. IPAC members serve three year terms. The current IPAC members are Brian Barnes, Kevin Croy, Matt Cooper (non-voting member, general council), Thomas Thornton, Larry Hinzman (chair, ex officio), Jerry Johnson, and Eric Swanson.
Each year, faculty, staff, and students are selected to serve as Ambassadors to promote innovation and entrepreneurialism as well as OIPC's mission. Ambassadors have some guidelines but otherwise have liberty to explore and develop opportunities they're interested in. Ambassadors also serve as liasion to various colleges and institutes.
Dr. Peter Webley is a Research Associate Professor of Remote Sensing in the Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska Fairbanks, as well as the Associate Director of Research at the Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration (ACUASI). His research focuses on natural hazards, especially volcanic eruptions, and the use of remote sensing data from the ground to space and back to map their extent and develop change detection algorithms.
Peter is the Vice-President of UAF’s first start-up, V-ADAPT, Inc., formed in 2013 and has successfully licensed intellectual property, been awarded small business innovation research projects and a US patent as well as been inducted into the State of Alaska Innovators Hall of Fame 2016 – 2017 class. He is a scientist, innovator, and entrepreneur.
Before coming to UAF, Peter was a postdoctoral researcher at Kings College London and developed a remote sensing monitoring system for the volcanoes of Central America. Peter has a BSc in Geophysics and an MSc in Atmospheric Sciences, both from the University of East Anglia, UK and a PhD in Remote Sensing from the University of Reading, UK.
As a research faculty member and the co-founder of UAF’s first startup company Peter works hard to support and advise faculty, staff, and students to develop their ideas, protect their intellectual property, and commercialize their work as they develop into our next generation of UAF entrepreneurs and solve tomorrow’s issues today.
Dr. Eran Hood is a Professor of Environmental Science at UAS. Eran's research interests are in Hydrology and Biogeochemistry. Eran is the ambassador for all of UAS including the Ketchikan and Sitka campuses.
Gwen is the Director of the Alaska Center for Energy and Power (ACEP). Prior to joining the University of Alaska, Gwen served as the Vice President of New Development at Chena Hot Springs Resort near Fairbanks. While at Chena, Gwen oversaw the construction of the first geothermal power plant in the state, in addition to numerous other innovative energy projects ranging from hydrogen production to cooling a 10,000ft2 ice museum year-round using 150°F hot water.
Gwen moved to Alaska in 1994, shortly after graduating from Bradley University with a degree in Physics and Mechanical Engineering. Gwen is the mother of three children – Leif, Marais, and Lael. She is married to Iditarod and Yukon Quest musher Ken Anderson, and the couple maintain a kennel of about 50 dogs outside of Fairbanks, Alaska. They live off grid in a house they built themselves, and generate their own power through a combination of solar PV, wind, and diesel generator.
Gwen has been the recipient of several awards throughout her career, including an R&D 100 award, Project of the Year from Power Engineering Magazine, the Alaska Top 40 Under 40 Award.
Dr. Alexander Hirsch is the Director of the Honors College and Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He holds a B.A. in Social Thought and Political Economy from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst; and a M.A. and Ph.D. in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Alex’s primary field is political theory. His research interests include political theory, ethics, public memory, transitional justice, indigenous cultural politics, ancient thought and literature, and politics and art.
Zachary Mason is a junior at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He comes to us with years of organizational leadership, marketing and public outreach experience. He holds positions on the boards of directors for two local non-profits, and his prior work experience includes retail management, food service, sales, corporate information technology, and elementary technology education.
Thank you to our former Ambassadors Robert "Trey" Coker and Rajive Ganguli for all of their hard work and dedication. Ambassadors serve a one-year term. If you're interested in being an Ambassador, we'd love to hear from you.