2017-2018 Board of Directors and Officers

Paul Sanberg

Paul R. Sanberg, Ph.D., D.Sc., FNAI, President

Senior Vice President for Research, Innovation & Knowledge Enterprise
Executive Director, Center of Excellence for Aging and Brain Repair
Distinguished University Professor
University of South Florida

Paul R. Sanberg, Ph.D., D.Sc., is founder and president of the National Academy of Inventors, senior vice president for research, innovation and knowledge enterprise, Distinguished University Professor of medicine, engineering, and business, and executive director of the Center of Excellence for Aging and Brain Repair at the University of South Florida. He trained at York University, University of British Columbia, Australian National University, and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine with faculty appointments at Ohio University, University of Cincinnati, and Brown University, among others. He is an inventor on 111 patents. His work has been instrumental in translating new pharmaceutical and cellular therapeutics to clinical trials and commercialization for Tourette syndrome, stroke, ALS, Alzheimer's, Huntington's, and Parkinson's disease and he has significant biotech and pharmaceutical industry experience in these areas. He is the author of over 600 scientific publications and considered a highly cited scientist, with more than 23,000 citations to his published work. He has served on editorial boards for over 30 scientific journals, is editor-in-chief of NAI’s journal Technology and Innovation, and has received numerous scientific awards. He is a fellow of AAAS and AIMBE, AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassador, Florida Academy of Sciences Medalist, Florida Inventors Hall of Fame inductee and serves on the National Medal of Technology and Innovation nomination evaluation committee, Smithsonian Innovation Festival selection committee, and APLU Commission on Innovation, Competitiveness, and Economic Prosperity advisory board. He is a Charter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Howard J. Federoff

Howard J. Federoff, M.D., Ph.D., FNAI, Vice President

Professor of Neurology

Howard J. Federoff, M.D., Ph.D., received his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. Following clinical training in Internal Medicine and Endocrinology/Metabolism and a post-doctoral fellowship in molecular neurobiology at Harvard Medical School's Massachusetts General Hospital he joined the faculty of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. In 1995 he joined the University of Rochester faculty. During his tenure at Rochester, he founded the Division of Molecular Medicine and Gene Therapy, the Center for Aging and Development and also served as Senior Associate Dean for Basic Research. In 2007 he joined the Georgetown University Medical Centers as Executive Vice President of Health Sciences and Executive Dean for the School of Medicine. His research is on novel treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. He serves on four editorial boards, two foundation boards, has chaired NIH Study Sections, was a member of the Board of Scientific Counselors of National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, was a member of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) Scientific Advisory Committee, Co-Chaired the NINDS strategic planning process, and was Chair of the NIH Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee. He has published numerous papers, chapters and editorials and received a number of awards including the Arthur Kornberg Research Award, Society for Neuroscience Grass Lectureship, Abreu Memorial Lectureship, induction into Alpha Omega Alpha, Bernard Sandberg Award, and election to the AAAS. He has co-founded two biotechnology start-up companies and has been awarded numerous patents. He and his wife Wendy Solovay, an immigration attorney, reside in Irvine, California. Their two daughters, Allison and Monica, are pursuing careers in law and medicine, respectively. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Sudeep Sarkar

Sudeep Sarkar, Ph.D., FNAI, Treasurer

University of South Florida

Sudeep Sarkar, Ph.D., is professor and chair of computer science and engineering, and associate vice president of I-Corps programs at the University of South Florida (USF). Sarkar is a world leader and innovator in the fields of computer vision and image processing, particularly related to gait biometrics, burn scars, and skin cancer. He has been instrumental in advancing the local and national innovation ecosystem as a national board member of NAI as well as current president of the executive committee and member of the USF chapter since its inception. His leadership in the NSF I-Corps™ Site program has transformed USF into a national leader for the program. He holds four U.S. patents and two published patent applications. He has published more than 200 articles, books, and book chapters, and serves as co-editor-in-chief, associate editor or editorial board member for 10 journals. Sarkar is a Fellow of NAI, AIMBE, AAAS, IEEE and IAPR.

Karen J.L. Burg, Ph.D

Karen J.L. Burg, Ph.D., FNAI


Karen J.L. Burg, Ph.D., is Professor and Harbor Lights Endowed Chair in the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Georgia (UGA). Prior to joining UGA, she served as vice president for research and professor of chemical engineering at Kansas State University. Honors to Karen include the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the inaugural Swiss AO Research Prize, recognition as a Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s TR100 Young Innovator, a National Academy of Inventors Fellow, an American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering Fellow, an American Council on Education Fellow, an International Union of Societies for Biomaterials Science and Engineering Fellow, a Biomedical Engineering Society Fellow, a US Department of Defense Era of Hope Scholar, and an American Association for the Advancement of Science-Lemelson Invention Ambassador. Karen has given over 200 invited presentations and authored over 140 peer reviewed publications on the subject of engineered tissues. She has seven patents issued, fifteen disclosures and/or provisional patent applications recorded, with one patent serving as the basis for a diagnostics company. A Burg invention was one of ten technologies featured in the inaugural Avon Foundation for Women - National Institutes of Health - Center for Advancing Innovation Breast Cancer Start-Up Challenge. Karen served as the principal investigator for the 2015 National Science Foundation Innovation-Corps L (NSF I-Corps L) Team Flipped Research Mentoring and as a member of the 2016 NSF I-Corps L teaching team.

Arthur Daemmrich

Arthur Daemmrich, Ph.D.


Arthur Daemmrich, Ph.D., is director of the Smithsonian's Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. Daemmrich's research explores relationships between regulation and innovation through historical and comparative studies of the pharmaceutical industry, chemicals sector, and healthcare systems. He is the author of Pharmacopolitics: Drug Regulation in the United States and Germany and has published over 25 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters in science and technology studies, the history of science, technology and medicine, and health and business policy, as well as numerous teaching cases and notes. Previously, he was associate professor at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, assistant professor at Harvard Business School, visiting professor at the China Europe International Business School, and director of the Center for Contemporary History and Policy at the Chemical Heritage Foundation. Daemmrich holds a Ph.D. from Cornell University in science and technology studies and a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania in the history and sociology of science.

Robert V. Duncan, Ph.D

Robert V. Duncan, Ph.D., FNAI


Robert V. Duncan, Ph.D., is the President’s Distinguished Chair in Physics and a professor of physics at Texas Tech University (TTU). He formerly served as vice president for strategic research initiatives at TTU and vice chancellor for research at the University of Missouri (MU). He was the Gordon and Betty Moore Distinguished Scholar in the Division of Physics, Mathematics, and Astronomy at Caltech in 2004–2005. He has published extensively in low-temperature physics, and he chaired a panel of the National Academy of Sciences on the Future of Fundamental Physics in Space in 2011. He holds 10 U.S. patents with multiple international filings. In 2004, Duncan co-invented a less-invasive type of percutaneous and intravascular cryosurgery that is currently in human clinical trials and which is based upon a genuinely new cryogenic technology. As an administrator, Duncan has supported innovation broadly within academia, and has started new student entrepreneurial programs at both TTU and MU. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Eric R. Fossum

Eric R. Fossum, Ph.D., FNAI


Eric R. Fossum, Ph.D., is professor at the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth, director of the Ph.D. Innovation Program, and associate provost for entrepreneurship and technology transfer. While at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory at Caltech, he invented the CMOS image sensor used in billions of camera phones, webcams, DSLRs, swallowable pill cameras, dental x-ray sensors, and many other applications. He co-founded and co-led Photobit to further develop and commercialize the technology which was acquired by Micron. An early Photobit sensor and camera is on display in the National Museum of American History. He later served as CEO of MEMS startup Siimpel Corp. He holds over 160 U.S. patents and has published over 290 technical papers. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and OSA, and co-founder and past president of the International Image Sensor Society. He is a Charter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, a member of the National Academy of Engineering, was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame, and serves as AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassador. He is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Prize (2017), the highest global honor in engineering, for the creation of digital imaging sensors.

Sethuraman Panchanathan

Sethuraman Panchanathan, Ph.D., FNAI


Sethuraman Panchanathan, Ph.D., leads knowledge enterprise development at Arizona State University, which advances research, innovation, strategic partnerships, entrepreneurship, and international and economic development at ASU. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI), the Canadian Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). In 2014, Panchanathan was appointed by President Barack Obama to the U.S. National Science Board (NSB) and has been appointed to the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE). He is currently serving as the chair-elect in the Council on Research (CoR) within the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU). At ASU his achievements include founding the Center for Cognitive Ubiquitous Computing (CUbiC) and serving as the founding director of the School of Computing and Informatics. His research interests include human-centered multimedia computing, haptic user interfaces, technologies for individuals with disabilities and machine learning for multimedia applications.

Stephen D. Russell

Stephen D. Russell, Ph.D., FNAI


Stephen D. Russell, Ph.D., is the Director of Science and Technology and Chief Technology Officer for the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) and is Director of the Science and Technology Department at the SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific (SSC Pacific) in San Diego, California. He also serves as the SPAWAR National Competency Lead for both Science and Technology and Research and Applied Sciences across the SPAWAR Enterprise. He leads a highly technical team of over 800 civilian, military and contractor support personnel including scientists, engineers, technical specialists and administrative staff members, and five Flag-level Senior Scientist/Technologist direct reports, in executing an annual budget of over $350M, and influencing over $1.2B supporting research, development, acquisition, test and evaluation in the command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance domains. He has authored or co-authored over 70 articles in peer-reviewed journals, conference proceedings, and technical reports and serves on the Editorial Board for Naval Science & Technology FUTURE FORCE Magazine. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Elizabeth Dougherty

Elizabeth Dougherty, J.D., Ex Officio

Director of Inventor Education, Outreach, and Recognition
Office of Innovation Development
United States Patent and Trademark Office

Elizabeth Dougherty is the Director of Inventor Education, Outreach, and Recognition in the Office of Innovation Development at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). In this capacity, she develops, implements and supervises programs that support the independent inventor community, small businesses, entrepreneurs and the intellectual property interests of colleges and universities; she supervises the development of outreach programs to women, minority and other underserved communities; she also builds and maintains relationships with state and local governments to promote local programs that support invention and innovation in the United States. Currently, Ms. Dougherty is on special assignment to the USPTO’s Office of Government Affairs where she is coordinating outreach to the Congressional Caucuses of the 115th Congress to inform and educate stakeholders about the importance of intellectual property.

Past NAI Board of Directors Members