Michael Durham Director
- M.S. Management of Technology, University of Alabama
- B.S. Mechanical Engineering, University of Florida
In 2011, Erik was named the founding Director of the University of Florida (UF) Engineering Innovation Institute and in 2015 Erik was named Founding Executive Director of the Florida Engineering Experiment Station (FLEXStation). The UF Engineering Innovation Institute is the nexus of leading-edge curricular and experiential programs focused on creating student leaders in innovation positioned to change the world, driving faculty programs focused on leading-edge research and innovation, connecting innovators, entrepreneurs, and investors with UF, and transitioning the research and technologies of the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering to the private sector.
Mr. Sander began his career as a Project Manager and Senior Engineer working at NASA, Lockheed Martin, General Electric, and Pratt & Whitney. He was also a Technology Transfer Officer for Lockheed Martin and the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. Starting in 1995, Erik joined the faculty of the University of Florida Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering in roles directed at fostering industrial collaboration, entrepreneurship, and technology commercialization across a $70M research base. He managed the UF-High Tech Corridor research fund, providing investments in high tech company R&D collaborations. Erik was a Principal for Cenetec Ventures, a private technology incubator and early stage venture fund and, along the way, he grew several start-up companies in areas ranging from real estate development to technology deployment. Erik co-founded and served as President of V2R Group, a premier university technology commercialization company that provides funding and executive level services to growing companies in markets from information technologies to medical devices.
Erik received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida and Master of Science in Management of Technology (Cum Laude) from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He has served on the boards of several public and private organizations and has given invited presentations at over 100 conferences internationally.