Energy industry entrepreneur to serve as interim director of UMass Dartmouth Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Phil Adams, of Westport, brings 30-plus years of experience in advising, managing and building innovative enterprises to SouthCoast’s leading business incubator

Headshot of the CIE Director

Phil Adams, the former CEO of a Massachusetts-based energy management software firm that grew from seven to 130 employees under his leadership, has been appointed interim director of the UMass Dartmouth Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE).

The CIE, located in Fall River, is the leading business incubator on the SouthCoast, currently housing 23 start-up companies, UMass Dartmouth laboratories, prototyping shops and conference facilities. The 60,000-square-foot facility is also home to Celldex Therapeutics, a pharmaceutical company.

Adams served as CEO of World Energy Solutions (NASDAQ: XWES), which helps enterprises simplify energy procurement, from 2011 to 2015, President from 2006-2010,  and as chief operating officer from 2001 to 2005. He also serves on the Board of World Energy Efficiency Services and as a business strategy consultant to multiple companies.

During his time at World Energy Solutions, the Worcester-based company grew from $250,000 in annual revenue to $40 million and was added to the NASDAQ. Adams’ success at the company, along with his active engagement with the Worcester business and civic community, earned him the 2013 Central Massachusetts Business Leader of the Year Award from the Worcester Business Journal.

Adams joins the CIE as the university enhances its position as a catalyst in the development of the region’s innovation economy with a focus on marine technology. Several current and former CIE companies are already engaged in the marine technology sector. In addition, the university is working to strengthen the academic connections between the CIE and the main campus, including the College of Engineering and the Charlton College of Business.

“The CIE is a critical economic development asset for the region, and Phil is going to play an important role in helping us imagine and invent the future of the center as an innovation and job creation engine,” UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Robert E. Johnson said. “His experience leading and advising companies will be valuable to our students and faculty, the community, and CIE startup companies as we all envision a prosperous new chapter.”

“I have approached my career as a vehicle to help people and enterprises reach their full potential, so this is an especially exciting opportunity for me,” Adams said. “The CIE is poised to accelerate the growth of the regional economy, I am looking forward to helping the university and community stakeholders identify the right opportunities and create the right strategies for success.”

Prior to joining World Energy Services, Adams served as the senior marketing executive for multiple technology companies and a consultant to Fortune 500 executive teams, as well as a mentor at the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship and Harvard University’s Innovation Labs.

Adams is the founder of the Pufahl Farricker Spirit Foundation and leads the Foundation’s annual 20-city ALS fundraising event. He is also a founding member of the U.S. (1982) and World (1983) Championship Ultimate Frisbee team, and a Massachusetts State Squash Champion (1999 3.0 Division).                                   

He received his master’s degree in management from MIT’s Sloan School and his undergraduate degree in economics from Williams College.

Adams will begin work at the CIE on July 25.

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