Tom O’Neal currently serves as the Associate Vice President of Research and Commercialization at The University of Central Florida (UCF) and Executive Director of the UCF Business Incubation Program (UCFBIP) and also the Florida Economic Gardening Institute (FEGI). O’Neal has been part of UCF’s Office of Research and Commercialization team working to help UCF become a leading metropolitan research university since year 2000.
He has assisted in the formation of numerous spin-off companies for technologies developed at UCF, and in 1999, established in 2000 the UCF Technology Incubator of which he serves as the Founding Director. The UCF Business Incubation Program has expanded to nine locations under O’Neal’s leadership. The Incubator was named the Incubator of the Year by the National Business Incubator Association (NBIA) where he is currently serving as a board member. He is the current president of the Florida Business Incubation Association (FBIA). The newest initiative under his direction the Director of Florida’s Economic Gardening Institute.
O’Neal joined the UCF staff as the Associate Director for the Center for Research and Education Optics and Laser (CREOL) in 1991. Since 1975, he has been an active member of the business community in Florida. He founded his first start-up company at age 18, which he successfully operated until pursuing a full-time college career. O’Neal received his Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering, a Master of Science in Engineering Management and his Master of Business Administration from the University of Central Florida and his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of South Florida.