04 Nov List of Key Midwest Biotech Women Grows
CHICAGO – Like the sucessful blues women Bonnie Raitt and Susan Tedeschi, one key differentiating factor in Midwest biotech is the growing presence of a cadre of talented women executives. I identified an initial group in my April 7 column. Since then, I have noticed even more women who make up the fabric of our biotech community.
1)Kathryn Hyer, director of life sciences, Illinois Ventures
Illinois Ventures is the early stage venture group that’s financing start-ups from the University of Illinois network. Hyer also serves as the executive director of the Chicago-ITEC, a technology-related economic development entity established by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity of the State of Illinois.
Hyer spent 14 years in investment banking most recently as the head of the health-care group at EVEREN Securities. Following her career in investment banking, she served as the CFO at Quark Biotech, a venture-funded company. She also served as the director of finance for the City of Cleveland from 1994 to 1996.
Hyer graduated magna cum laude from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Mich. And the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law in Cleveland.
2)Rajni Aneja, vice president of corporate development and founder, ZuChem
ZuChem is a Peoria, Ill.-based biotech company that’s developing novel glycochemical-based products. Aneja was recently vice president of corporate development at MediChem Life Sciences and had an instrumental role in the recent merger between MediChem and ThermoGen.
Aneja also negotiated MediChem’s alliance with global fine chemicals manufacturer Degussa. She has 15 years of experience in commercializing early stage life sciences products and has previously held positions with Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Ligand Pharmaceuticals, Abbott Laboratories and ARCH Development Corporation, the technology transfer affiliate of the University of Chicago.
She holds an M.B.A. in business economics and finance from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business.
3)Lynn Allen-Hoffman, president/chief scientific officer and founder, Stratatech
Stratatech is the Madison, Wis.-based biotech company that’s focusing on the development of artificial skin. She is also a professor at the University of Wisconsin medical school within its department of pathology.
4)Laura L. Kiessling, founder/board member and SAB member, Quintessence Biosciences
Quintessence is a Madison, Wis.-based biotech company. She is an expert on multivalency and the chemistry and biology of carbohydrates and nucleic acids. Kiessling received a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Yale University and did post-doctoral work in chemistry at the California Institute of Technology. In 1991, she joined the faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she is now professor of chemistry and biochemistry.
5)Linda Leikness, COO, Delatanoid Pharmaceuticals
Delatanoid is a Madison, Wis.-based biotech company that’s focusing on osteoporosis.
6)Teresa Pascarelli, president, Integrity Pharmaceuticals
Integrity is a specialty pharmaceuticals company that’s based in Indianapolis, Ind. She is an established pharmaceutical industry leader with more than 20 years of experience. At Roche Pharmaceuticals, she served as head of field operations and marketing services and vice president of its North Central sales operation. Pascarelli previously was Roche’s mid-Atlantic business unit director where she led two regional business expansions and implemented numerous product launches in specialty and primary care markets.
Pascarelli also held numerous leadership positions at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals where she began her career as an R&D scientist. She received her B.S. in pharmacy from the Rutgers University College of Pharmacy in New Jersey and earned her M.B.A. in computer information systems from Pace University in New York.
7)Alice Martin, partner in the Chicago office, Barnes & Thornburg
She is a member of the IP department where she concentrates on patent and trademark litigation, prosecution and due diligence investigations. Her practice covers genetics, gene products and control, molecular genetic methods, treatments and assays for various diseases, surgical techniques, tissue culture methods and waste management and monitoring.
Martin is a member of the National Institutes of Health study sections, has written some 100 articles for scientific publications and has delivered more than 50 presentations nationally and internationally on scientific and legal issues. She received her M.S. in genetics from the University of Michigan in 1963 and her Ph.D. in biology (genetics) in 1969 from Case Western Reserve University.
She received her J.D. the from Loyola University School of Law in Chicago in 1989. Prior to practicing law, Martin was a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Northwestern University Medical School and Northwestern Memorial Hospital as well as a certified medical geneticist and director of the laboratory of cytogenetics.
8)Caren Heller, president and founder, Athena Healthcare Consulting
Based in Chicago, Athena provides services to a range of companies from start-ups to big pharma. Heller’s professional experience spans more than 20 years in medical centers and the pharmaceutical industry. A graduate of Harvard University with a concentration in biochemistry, she received her M.D. from Columbia University and her M.B.A. with a specialization in health administration from the University of Chicago.
Prior to founding Athena, Heller provided consulting services to the pharmaceutical industry and researched multiple facets of drug development including design and interpretation of clinical studies, adverse events, medication-compliance issues and competitive product analysis.
She also worked as an associate medical director for Pfizer Pharmaceuticals where she developed and managed a clinical development program for Procardia XL. Heller has co-authored numerous publications on topics ranging from disease management trends in diabetes, cardiovascular risk factors and asthma to emerging medical biotechnology.
9)Mary L. Campbell, general partner and founder, EDF Ventures
EDF is based in Ann Arbor, Mich. She currently is a member of the health-care practice team. Campbell is a director of Aastrom Biosciences, a cell therapy company, and Health Care Solutions, which delivers respiratory and infusion therapy for patients at home.
She has led the firm’s investments in multiple health care and information technology companies. Campbell was appointed by Gov. Engler to the steering committee for Michigan’s Life Sciences Corridor, a statewide initiative to create collaborative clusters of research institutions and private companies engaged in life sciences research and commercialization.
Campbell received her M.B.A. from the University of Michigan, her master’s of special education from Fairfield University and her B.A. in English from the University of Michigan.
The above list is by no means meant to be an all-inclusive list of female biotech talent in the Midwest and should be used in conjunction with my initial list in April. It also isn’t in any order or priority. It does comprise an exciting and savvy group of women helping to build our biotech community. I welcome from you names of any key person I have missed. See you next week!
Michael S. Rosen is the vice chairman of human health at the Illinois Biotechnology Industry Organization (IBIO). He can be reached at email@example.com. This article has been syndicated on the Wisconsin Technology Network courtesy of ePrairie, a user-driven business and technology news community distributed via the Web, the wireless Web and free daily e-mail newsletters. They can be found at www.eprairie.com.
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