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University of Michigan Innovation Partnerships
University of Michigan Innovation Partnerships

Denise Graves

Commercialization Program Director, MTRAC Transportation


Denise is the Commercialization Program Director for the Advanced Transportation MTRAC program
with UM’s Innovation Partnerships. In this role, she serves as the statewide program director supporting
technology commercialization activities on a wide range of transportation and mobility projects that
have a high commercial potential at institutions of higher education, hospital systems and nonprofit
research institutions. Assistance to faculty inventors includes applying for matching funds, mentor
support, collaboration with industry partners and engagement of venture investors. Prior to joining the
Innovation Partnership Team, Denise was a member of the Entrepreneurship & Innovation team at the
Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) engaging with Michigan’s public universities, key
entrepreneurial stakeholders, and investors, managing programs that supported statewide collaboration
and the commercialization of early-stage technology.

Prior to her work in technology commercialization and economic development activities, Denise held
sales and business development positions in a number of small and second stage high-tech companies in
Ann Arbor. Her experience includes new business development, channel partner relations, client
relations, sales, mentoring, strategic planning, public speaking, contract negotiation and program

Denise holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Ferris State University.