Uniseed’s inaugural CEO, Dr David Evans AM, passed away on 19 September 2014.
David’s vision and passion were integral in the formation of Australia ’s first university based venture capital fund – Uniseed – a $20 million venture jointly funded by the Universities of Queensland and Melbourne, with the assistance of UniQuest and Melbourne Enterprise International (now UoM Commercial).
David served as CEO of the Uniseed fund from its inception in late 2000 until June 2002, after leaving his position as Managing Director of UniQuest, where he acted from 1994 – 2000. It was under David’s leadership that the commercial agreement was executed between UQ and CSL regarding the Gardasil® cervical cancer vaccine.
David was named a Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia in the 2013 Australia Day Honours list, receiving the award “for significant service to science and innovation through commercialising and developing new technologies”.
Apart from establishing a firm foundation upon which UniQuest and Uniseed were able to grow into one of Australia’s most successful university research commercialisation partnerships, David helped to launch many other innovations throughout his career, including the technology based on UQ research which can be found in two-thirds of the world’s magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines – being Executive Chairman of Magnetica from 2004 – 2009.
David also mentored many of the commercialisation professionals now leading Australia’s efforts to promote our innovation resources globally, including tech transfer specialists, venture capitalists, intellectual property advisors and researchers.
Prior to David’s involvement with research commercialisation at UQ, he was Chief Executive Officer of University Partnerships at the University of New England from 1989 – 1994. He was also known for participating in and contributing to “the mother of all demonstrations” when Doug Engelbart showcased the computer mouse and the “dawn of interactive computing” in 1968.
David held a BE from the University of New South Wales and MS (Engineering Economic Planning), AM (Economics) and PhD (Engineering) degrees from Stanford University.