Do you have any advice for older, senior SWE that is transitioning into MLE?

I have a 22 year career in software development, systems administration, and open source software development. I just finished a Masters in a Deep Learning topic. I have also done some ML/DL for a couple years of industry experience but as an MLOPS person. I have taught. I have mentored. I have contributed to multiple study groups but I don’t have any published work. It just so happens that none of it panned-out to be publishable. How can I stand out?

Oh I am in the same boat as you @ats
I have finished a couple of master in science, the latest one was in Info-bionics using deep learning. 10+ years of experience in different software development fields. No publications under my name.
It would be nice if you have some piece of advice for me!
Thank you in advance!