Wayne State University

Aim Higher

Wayne State University

Public Relations

Media Report

February 2, 2012

Wayne State hires former Pharma exec to lead tech commercialization efforts


Wayne State is particularly renowned for its contributions to chemical technology, and, earlier this month, the university hired Harl Tolbert—a former pharmaceutical executive with an extensive business development, licensing, and IP management background—as its associate vice president of technology commercialization tasked with building relationships with startups. Tolbert says he plans to increase the school’s efforts to commercialize its technology by pitching both fresh technology and older technology to startups, particularly those in the realm of life science applications that involve human cells or tissue. He is also seeking ways to develop technology despite the relative lack of funding that university research typically receives, such that the technology is “one or two steps” beyond the earliest stages. A photo of Tolbert is included.


  • Xconomy
5700 Cass Avenue, 3100 Academic Administration Building * Detroit, Michigan 48202
Phone (313) 577-2150 * Fax (313) 577-4459 * Newsline (313) 577-5345