Entrepreneur Richardson to head UH technology commercialization office

University of Hawaiʻi
Vassilis L. Syrmos, (808) 956-5006
VP for Research and Innovation, 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: Nov 24, 2014

November 24, 2014



The University of Hawai`i is pleased to announce that local venture capitalist and entrepreneur William K. (Bill) Richardson has been named as interim director of the Office of Technology Transfer and Economic Development (OTTED), effective December 1, 2014.

In his new role, Richardson will lead a department that will work closely with the University of Hawai`i’s recently launched XLR8UH proof-of-concept center to help program cohorts to fully exploit their UH-owned technologies commercially.  OTTED is also responsible for the marketing, licensing and protection of UH intellectual property, and the creation of new opportunities for collaboration between UH faculty and industry partners.   

“It’s a very exciting time to be at the University of Hawai`i to help grow the commercialization area of its research arm,” said Richardson. “I look forward to sharing my passion, knowledge and experience in entrepreneurship to help UH faculty to become successful entrepreneurs themselves.”   

Richardson founded and built a series of venture funds that invested in 17 Hawai`i-based companies, including two that went public on the NASDAQ exchange.  Prior to venture funding, Richardson worked as an attorney in Hawai`i specializing in commercial law and finance after a nine-year career at Wang Laboratories.  Since 2002, Richardson has served as an adjunct professor at the UH Mānoa Shidler College of Business and as a lecturer in entrepreneurship at the William S. Richardson School of Law. He is an advisory board member of the Pacific Asian Center for Entrepreneurship (PACE) at the Shidler College of Business, a University of Hawai`i Foundation trustee and is a founder and current board member of HiBEAM, a locally based virtual incubator. A double major in economics and sociology at UC Santa Barbara, Richardson received his bachelor’s degree (with honors) in 1978 and was awarded his juris doctorate from the Duke University School of Law in 1981.

“We are extremely pleased to have someone like Bill Richardson on board to help lead OTTED in our efforts to create a more vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem through the aggressive commercialization of our IP,” said UH Vice President for Research and Innovation Vassilis L. Syrmos.  “With his impressive credentials, extensive industry contacts and a wealth of entrepreneurial experience and knowledge, we expect OTTED to be a major contributor to the success of the Hawai`i Innovation Initiative.”


About the Hawai`i Innovation Initiative

The University of Hawai‘i is working in partnership with the private sector and government to build a thriving innovation, research, education and training enterprise in Hawai‘i that will develop a third major economic sector for the state and addresses the challenges and opportunities faced by Hawai`i and the world.