Whiteboard to Boardroom


Whiteboard to Boardroom LogoLed by the UMKC Innovation Center, a National Science Foundation Partnership for Innovation grant created the Whiteboard to Boardroom program (W2B) as a partnership between four regional schools – UMKC, University of Kansas, Johnson County Community College and William Jewell College. It has since expanded to include numerous academic and research institutions in the bi-state region. W2B is a team effort that includes research partners that provide the new technologies, a technology transfer office that collects technologies from research partners and helps with initial assessment and IP issues, entrepreneurs with a depth of expertise and experience in different research areas that utilize a variety of business models, W2B staff members that serve as "match-makers", and service providers such as the SBTDC and KCSourceLink partners that help with business connections to facilitate startup development.

The Whiteboard to Boardroom program provides a number of services to the regional entrepreneurial community. These include but are not limited to identification of CEO talent and mentors for new companies, access to innovations developed at regional academic institutions and research organizations, establishment of strategic partnerships and identification of sources of capital. Key components of the program include:


  • Technology commercialization education programs for university faculty and hospital physicians
  • Serving as mentors for student entrepreneurial program 

Technology/Expertise Hub

  • A central catalogue of university technologies available for licensing
  • A database of domain experts for technology evaluation
  • Relationships with CEO-potential candidates ready to run newly formed companies



  • Matching available technologies to entrepreneurs and established companies in the region
  • Facilitating the licensing of university technologies to regional companies
  • Fostering relationships with regional trade networks

Business Development

  • Promoting joint development projects between regional companies
  • Teaming with business development organizations such as UMKC SBTDC and KCSourceLink partners to provide business assistance to entrepreneurs
  • Identifying funding resources for newly formed startups

Program Partners

W2B is all about partners. It works because of a strong relationship with research institutions, CEO-level talent and business development resources. As W2B evolved, innovations from not only the original educational partners, but other large research institutions and corporations have been added to the mix, providing additional technologies for the commercialization pipeline.

Today, W2B has 21 institutional partners including:

  • Blue Valley High School CAPS Program, Overland Park, KS
  • Honeywell
  • Institute for Industrial and Applied Sciences, St. Joseph, MO
  • Jordan Valley Innovation Center, Springfield, MO
  • Mercy Research and Development, Springfield, MO
  • Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, Kansas City, MO
  • Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS
  • KU Medical Center, Kansas City, KS
  • Missouri Science & Technology, Rolla, MO
  • MRIGlobal, Kansas City, MO
  • Northwest Missouri State University, Maryville, MO
  • Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, KS
  • Rockhurst University, Kansas City, MO
  • St. Luke's Mid America Heart Institute, Kansas City, MO
  • The Children’s Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, MO
  • University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS
  • University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
  • University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO
  • Wichita State University, Wichita, KS
  • William Jewell College, Liberty, MO

The W2B has become a clearinghouse for regional commercialization information that is available to innovators and companies alike to advance technologies to the marketplace. Ideas available for licensing can be found at the Whiteboard2Boardroom . Please contact us if you are looking for an innovation to license into your existing company or want to form a new company based on an innovation. Jim Baxendale at baxendalej@umkc.edu (816)-235-6429 or Denise Fields at fieldsdm@umkc.edu (816)-235-6074.

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