The Team

Paul Latiolais, Director

Paul Latiolais is the Director of the Center for Innovation, Commercialization and Entrepreneurship at Lamar University, which serves as an incubator for emerging technology under development at the university. The center’s purpose is to bring emerging technologies out of research and prepare them for the marketplace leveraging expertise from Lamar’s colleges of engineering, science, and business. Paul holds the Ben J. Rogers Director position for the Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies (IES) and is a professor in business management in the College of Business.

Paul has extensive industry experience in engineering technology, business development, and product launch to major companies, including Intel, Cisco, Apple, Samsung, General Motors, and Fiat. He has initiated numerous technology products in the semiconductor/hi-tech industries and managed the lifecycle process from product development, incubation, launch, marketing, and next-generation introduction. Paul worked with technology global leaders such as Synopsys, Inc. (NASDQ:SNPS), Mentor Graphics Corp. (NASDAQ:MENT), Schlumberger, and Northrop-Grumman across the US including San Jose, CA and Portland, OR. Latiolais holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University, an M.B.A. from George Fox University (Newberg, OR), and a Technology Management Certificate from Oregon Health Sciences University (Portland, OR).

Jack Gill, Chairman

Jack Gill is the founder and managing partner (retired) of Vanguard Ventures in Palo Alto. During his career, Gill has earned distinction and honors as a scientist, senior executive, entrepreneur, venture capitalist, university professor and philanthropist.

Gill has more than four decades of experience working in Silicon Valley and Boston as a company founder and venture capitalist. Gill has founded and financed start-up companies in the instrumentation, computer, communications and medical industries. Vanguard Venture’s first five funds invested $155 million in 107 start-ups and generated more than $1 billion return to investors.

In 1998, Jack and Linda established The Gill Foundation of Texas. In 2000, he joined the faculties of Harvard Medical School and MIT and served as senior advisor to the Center for the Integration of Medicine and Innovative Technology program.  Since 2007, he has been professor of the practice of entrepreneurship at Rice University.  He has taught scientific, medical and entrepreneurship courses at 12 major universities.  He is now working on converting his experience and the course materials into several books. 

Gill is a member of Lamar’s College of engineering Advisory Council and created the Gill Chair at Lamar. Jack and Linda Gill support students in many ways, including recently sponsoring LU M.B.A. students’ participation in the Ignite! Entrepreneurship Conference at UC-Davis.  The Gills are members of Lamar’s Legacy Society in recognition of their support to the university. In 1999, he received the prestigious Horatio Alger Award for Distinguished Americans.

Brandon Price, Advisor

Results-oriented senior manager with 35+ years of experience in biotechnology (diagnostics, therapeutics, and contract services). Demonstrated strong technical, strategic, financial, business development, manufacturing, regulatory affairs, marketing, and sales skills. Co-founder of three academic institutes and two successful biotechnology companies. CEO of five biotechnology companies. Extensive international business experience. Served on university and company boards and governors’ commissions. Elected (May 2017) a member of the GOOSE Society of Texas. Raised money privately (angel and venture capital) and publicly. Current academic affiliations with Lamar University (Beaumont, TX), Virginia Commonwealth University (Richmond, VA), Texas State University (San Marcos, TX), and Universidad Panamericana (Guadalajara, Mexico). Excellent interpersonal, organizational and presentation skills – including keynote speaker at 50+ international conferences.

Specialties: Technical: flow cytometry, biomanufacturing (upstream and downstream), biosafety testing

Business: General management, marketing and sales, business development, business planning

Academic: life sciences entrepreneurship training 

Tejus Mane, Commerialization Associate

Tejus is a technology & startup enthusiast with over six years of experience in product-market fit, commercialization and accelerator design. He has been heavily involved in the Houston and Southeast Texas innovation ecosystem, which includes being part of the OwlSpark/Red Labs accelerator, and commercialization associate at the Beaumont CICE. He also cofounded AtmoSpark, an atmospheric water extraction company, where he led the customer & prototype development phase as well as raised over $100,000 from grants and investors.

Tejus holds a B.S. in chemical & biomolecular engineering from Rice University and a M.E.S. in chemical engineering from Lamar University. 

Chad Hughes, Student Intern

Chad is a Mirabeau Scholar at Lamar University, and has volunteered/worked with the CICE since 2017. He has a passion for innovation, and a learner's mindset. He majors in Marketing and his interests are varied from science and technology, to hiking and music. Chad's career aspiration is to become a product designer and better the world through sustainable design.