April 2, 2004 by Ellen Davis NMSU News Center
Michael Tentnowski has been named executive director of the Physical Science Institute (PSI) at New Mexico State University. He will begin work April 5.
PSI is a non-profit entity formed in 2001 to facilitate long-term technology incubation, university-business partnerships and jobs for New Mexico based on technologies developed by New Mexico researchers. It is located at NMSU’s Physical Science Laboratory (PSL) and has about 25 employees.
“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to establish an institute that will commercialize advanced technologies developed at PSL and elsewhere in New Mexico,” Tentnowski said.
Tentnowski has served as president of the Dan River Business Development Center in Virginia since 2001. He also has served as coordinator of business development programs at Virginia Tech and as director of training and development at Radford University.
Tentnowski co-authored The Virginia Entrepreneur’s Guide, which was published in 1994, and has taught courses and seminars on entrepreneurship. He received a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Montana.
“Michael is a very dedicated worker who has had experience doing economic development in a setting very similar to what we have in southern New Mexico in terms of infrastructure,” said Don Birx, director of PSL.
Birx said PSI’s role is to work as a partner with the Arrowhead Center, which has the lead role for economic development at NMSU. PSI can incubate technologies to the point of investment and the Arrowhead Center, which is run by NMSU’s College of Business Administration and Economics, can help write business plans and seek venture capital for emerging companies. When new companies need their own facilities, the Office of the Vice Provost for Research at NMSU can offer buildings and land in NMSU’s Research Park.
“Michael has exactly the talent we need to accelerate the commercialization of intellectual property generated at NMSU and other institutions such as New Mexico Tech,” said Garrey Carruthers, dean of the College of Business Administration and Economics at NMSU. “I look forward to working with him in what is becoming a well-coordinated effort among all units of NMSU to excel in economic development.”
PSI is overseen by a board of directors that includes Birx; Carruthers; Rich Hills, interim vice provost for research at NMSU; Stephen Hottman, deputy director of PSL; Bill Conroy, NMSU president emeritus; Randy Burge, president of ProActive Tools in Santa Fe; Tom Stephenson, general partner with Verge in Albuquerque; John Warner, director of project development and business assistance at Technology Ventures Corporation in Albuquerque; George Richmond, president of New Mexico Private Investors; and two members of the NMSU Board of Regents – Steven Anaya and James Manatt. Hills serves as chairman of the board.