New Zealand Committee

Melissa Wong

Senior Consultant, BioPacific Partners

In her free time, Melissa is involved in various not-for-profit organisations at both national and regional governance level. She is a Trustee of the Chinese Poll Tax Heritage Trust (a position she was appointed to by the New Zealand Ethnic Communities Minister), Area Director of Toastmasters NZ, and co-founder of Future Dragonz, a nationwide young professionals network. She is also a member of the Asia NZ Leadership Network.



   Wilson Huang

Business Development Manger, Plant and Food Research, Auckland

Wilson’s mandate is to assess, prioritise, and commercialise Plant & Food Research's intellectual property portfolio. He regularly engages with stakeholders within the New Zealand and international innovation ecosystem and develops and maintains connectivity with relevant industries.

Previously, he held various positions at two technology transfer offices - one being the largest in Australasia and another being part of the fastest growing New Zealand university. These positions varied from analyst to technology transfer manager. Accomplishments include creating and implementing a commercialisation process based on the stage-gate approach, assessed over 140 technology projects across multiple research areas from medical science to software engineering, and progressed high-value technology projects to IP license or spin-offs.

Outside work, he provides consultation to early-stage startups on product-market fit, IP protection and valuation, MVP development, and capital raising. Business aside, you can sometimes find Wilson volunteering at SPCA Auckland, walking Miso his Japanese Spitz on the streets of Auckland, or in the gym weightlifting.





   Michelle Polglase

Commercialisation Programme Manager at KiwiNet, Christchurch

We are delighted to welcome Michelle Polglase as a recent addition to the LESANZ (Licensing Executives Society Australia and New Zealand) NZ committee. Michelle brings a wealth of experience in business and management, with a proven track record of working in high-growth publicly-listed global technology companies.

Michelle's background in the tech sector has led her to various roles within New Zealand's innovation ecosystem. She has served as the former Programme Director for CreativeHQ's FinTech Accelerator and the University of Canterbury's Centre for Entrepreneurship, showcasing her deep understanding of the startup landscape and her passion for supporting founders with their capital strategy.

Currently serving as the Commercialisation Programme Manager at KiwiNet, Michelle is based in Christchurch and plays a pivotal role in driving commercialisation efforts for cutting-edge technologies. Her keen interest in aerospace is also evident as she holds a recreational pilot's license, reflecting her enthusiasm for emerging industries and technologies.
With Michelle's valuable expertise and passion for innovation, we are confident that she will make significant contributions to the LESANZ NZ committee. Please join us in extending a warm welcome to Michelle Polglase as she embarks on this new role.

  Dr Christine Egan

Special Counsel, AJ Park Law, Wellington

A patent expert at AJ Park since 1997, Christine is a member of the firm’s chembio patents team, working with clients in the chemical, biotechnology, pharmaceutical, dairy and food industries. Her specialist areas include nutrition, animal vaccines and nutraceuticals.

Christine’s role sees her involved in drafting, filing and prosecuting patent applications for her clients. She also advises on validity and infringement issues as well patent filing strategy. Among her New Zealand clients are Crown Research Institutes, universities, biotech firms and food companies, while her overseas clients include major pharmaceutical and biotech companies.

A registered patent attorney, as well as a barrister and solicitor, Christine has a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Dundee, Scotland, and gained her law degree from Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand. She has held post-doctoral research positions at both the Institute of Cellular Pathology at the University of Catholique de Louvain in Brussels, and at the Biochemistry department of the University of Liverpool.

In her downtime, Christine loves getting out into nature, tramping and going camping with her husband and two boxer dogs in their retro caravan.



  Dr Roslyn Murray

IP Advisor for The Institute of Plant and Food Research Ltd (PFR), New Zealand

Roslyn has a Ph.D in Materials Science from the University of Waikato and is a registered Patent Attorney in both New Zealand and Australia. Roslyn is part of a team that oversees PFR’s Intellectual Property (IP) portfolio and liaises with internal and external stakeholders to both prosecute and maintain the portfolio. She also works closely with the Business and  Commercialisation Managers to help commercialise the innovations that come out of PFR. Roslyn has been involved in the area of IP strategy and protection for 20 years, and prior to that worked for a high-tech start-up company before training to become a patent attorney at one of New Zealand’s leading IP firms. 

Outside of work, Roslyn is a mother to three active teenagers who are all immersed in the world of high performance rowing.