The New Jersey Commission on Science, Innovation and Technology named Judith Sheft on Thursday as its executive director.
Sheft has an extensive background in fostering opportunities for early-stage New Jersey companies and for the next generation of New Jersey entrepreneurs. She will begin at the CSIT on Jan. 13, 2020.
“New Jersey already has the resources necessary to restore its innovation ecosystem to preeminence, including globally-recognized academic institutions and a highly talented workforce,” Sheft said in a prepared statement. “I am honored to accept the executive director position and am excited to work with the Commission members and our partners throughout the Garden State to ensure that entrepreneurs worldwide know all that the state has to offer.”
In August 2018, Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation re-establishing the former New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology as the CSIT. The commission is tasked with leading the way in promoting New Jersey as a home for academic and technological research, development and commercialization.
Sheft brings nearly 20 years of expertise in New Jersey’s innovation ecosystem to her new position. She spent the past 18 years as an associate vice president at NJIT.
She oversaw the Enterprise Development Center, NJIT’s high-tech accelerator/incubator, which falls under the auspices of the New Jersey Innovation Institute. She was also responsible for managing the university’s Office of Technology Development and creating programs and policies focused on patent creation, intellectual property valuation, and the strategic use and protection of IP assets: elements that are crucial to emerging technology companies.