Dedric Carter, vice chancellor for operations and technology transfer, has been appointed as Washington University in St. Louis’ first vice chancellor for innovation and chief commercialization officer (CCO). The appointment is effective Aug. 1, according to Chancellor Andrew D. Martin, PhD, and David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice chancellor for medical affairs and dean of the School of Medicine.
In his new role, Carter will provide vision and strategy to advance the culture of innovation across the university, strengthen intellectual property assets for licensing, and identify new ventures and opportunities in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. He will engage with internal and external partners to build and grow the innovation activities in all departments and schools.
“Our goal is to elevate the entrepreneurial impact of the university on the economy of the region and beyond,” Martin said. “As CCO, Dedric will have oversight of the Office of Technology Management in addition to many of our existing entrepreneurial programs. We are fortunate to have a leader of his caliber to step into this critical role for the university.”
“There has been wonderful growth in entrepreneurial activities at the university over the last seven years, and in this new role Dedric will be leading our effort to create even greater impact through the commercialization of the intellectual accomplishments of the university,” Perlmutter said. “Dedric will be reporting to me in my capacity as executive vice chancellor, with the goal of developing portfolios in all of the schools. We have already been able to provide significant additional funding for the work of the Office of Technology Management for education and training in entrepreneurship, increasing networking and new partnerships with key stakeholders and industry collaborators, as well as increased capacity for licensing and patenting.”
In addition to his current role as vice chancellor, Carter also is a professor of practice in the McKelvey School of Engineering and at Olin Business School. He has undergraduate and graduate degrees in electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management; and a PhD in information systems from Nova Southeastern University.
Carter has considerable experience and a national reputation in the academic innovation space. Prior to joining Washington University, he served as assistant dean of engineering at MIT with responsibilities for the school’s development portfolio, STEM-outreach programs and strategic entrepreneurial initiatives, including the establishment of the MIT-Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory partnership in Braga, Portugal.
From 2011-2013, he served as senior adviser for strategic initiatives in the Office of the Director of the National Science Foundation (NSF) and as executive secretary to the U.S. National Science Board. In this capacity, he helped to launch the NSF Innovation Corps to facilitate the translation of basic research to the establishment of new ventures. Prior to his time in academia, Carter helped to launch a venture-backed company with offices in the U.S. and U.K.
Carter is an active member of the St. Louis community, serving as a board member of the Academy of Science of St. Louis; Saint Louis Art Museum; Delmar Divine project, for which he serves on the executive committee; Junior Achievement of St. Louis; University City Children’s Center; and the St. Louis Repertory Theater, for which he serves as vice president.
He is a board observer for the Cortex Innovation Community; a member of the community advisory board of Missouri Baptist Hospital; and an immediate past chairman of Venture Café STL. Carter was appointed chair of the Missouri Technology Corp. by Missouri Gov. Mike Parson in 2021 after serving for four years as the elected vice-chair of the board. He is a member of the Carnegie Mellon Presidential Advisory Committee on the CMU Experience and an appointed member of the board of directors of the MIT Alumni Association.