After operating for 25 years under the name STC.UNM, this organization has grown from a staff of just two in 1995 to a university technology-transfer and economic-development program with national and international stature. They have evolved to provide services far beyond technology-transfer support and now spearhead UNM’s economic development initiatives. As a result, they have also adopted the Rainforest model to develop an innovation ecosystem in New Mexico. This concept is used to develop sustainable innovation economies to generate greater creative and economic output. This was part of the guiding framework that led to the creation of the research and innovation district initiative, Innovate ABQ, and its core site the Lobo Rainforest Building where their office is located.
“Over the past several years, we have seen many changes and growth within our company,” said Lisa Kuuttila, CEO and Chief Economic Development Officer of UNM Rainforest Innovations. “Since 2013, we have been responsible for carrying out the economic development vision of UNM and to drive economic growth in New Mexico. A big part of that vision was in creating an innovation district in downtown Albuquerque and the Lobo Rainforest Building. We moved there in 2017 and today this location serves as a place where human creativity, business acumen, scientific discovery, investment capital, and other divergent elements all work together to develop sustainable enterprises. This is what we call our Rainforest in the Desert. It seemed fitting that our new name, UNM Rainforest Innovations, would tie directly to our overall mission as a company, which is to foster a Rainforest in the Desert.”
This name change is currently underway and will be fully implemented in the coming weeks. If you would like to learn more about UNM Rainforest Innovations and the services they provide, please visit www.innovations.unm.edu.
About UNM Rainforest Innovations
UNM Rainforest Innovations is the technology-transfer and economic-development organization for the University of New Mexico (UNM). They protect and commercialize technologies developed at UNM by filing patents and copyrights and transferring them to the marketplace. They connect the business community (companies, entrepreneurs and investors) to these UNM technologies for licensing opportunities and the creation of start-up companies. UNM Rainforest Innovations’ vision is to play a vital role in New Mexico’s economic development and to be a leader in technology commercialization. Under the leadership of CEO Lisa Kuuttila, they are substantially growing their program using the Rainforest model to develop an innovation economy in New Mexico.