Yale Innovation Summit to Feature Leading Investor and Philanthropist Gerald Chan

The Yale Innovation Summit, a major event on May 10 connecting innovators and investors at Yale, will feature Gerald Chan as a keynote speaker. Chan is the cofounder of Morningside Group—a private equity and venture capital firm that has invested in a number of biotech companies—and a noted philanthropist. He donated $350M to Harvard, his alma mater, for the renamed Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health—the largest such gift in the university’s history. That unrestricted gift exemplifies Dr. Chan’s commitment to solving global health problems and providing opportunity for students to pursue careers in public health. Chan is also an enthusiastic public speaker and delivered Harvard’s commencement address in 2012.  

“We are thrilled to have Dr. Chan present at the Yale Innovation Summit,” says Bill Wiesler, Director of New Ventures at the Office of Cooperative Research, which is organizing the event. “He has tremendous insight into how biotech companies can succeed, both as an investor and a board member of several leading companies, and he is passionately driven to improve public health across the globe.”  

Other speakers to be featured at the event include Roy Herbst, Ensign Professor of Medicine (Medical Oncology) and Professor of Pharmacology and Chief of Medical Oncology at Yale Cancer Center and Jim Hornthal, a successful entrepreneur and investor who cofounded LaunchPad Central which produces software used by innovators including by participants in the National Science Foundation’s I-CORPS Program.

The Yale Innovation Summit provides a full spectrum of discovery and technology in development at Yale—and an up-close look at the innovations that are poised to make significant impact. The event includes two tracks—biotech and tech—with expert panelists addressing what investors are looking for and sharing insights for moving technology from the lab to the marketplace. Confirmed biotech panelists include Christine Brennan, Principal at Novartis Venture Funds; James Tobin, Vice President, Cardiovascular and Metabolism Scientific Innovation at Johnson & Johnson; Mary Tanner, Senior Managing Director of Evolution Life Science Partners and Lou Tartalia, Executive in Residence at 5AM Ventures to name just a few. Confirmed experts for the tech track include Hyuk-Jeen Suh, Head of Samsung Ventures East Coast; Kathleen McGroddy-Goetz, VP of Partnerships and Solutions at IBM Watson Health; Paul Hermes, Entrepreneur in Residence at Medtronic and Patricia Kemp, General Partner at OAK HC/FT among many others. Separate Biotech and Tech Pitch Contests will feature the 16 top venture-ready opportunities from Yale faculty and students competing for cash prizes.

Yale researchers will present additional startup ideas and breakthrough discoveries at a large poster session, a networking highlight of last year’s event. Of particular note will be displays showcasing the finalists for the Blavatnik Fund for Innovation at Yale, a $10M fund supported by the Blavatnik Family Foundation that provides up to $300,000 to Yale faculty to commercialize applied research and technology in the life sciences. Blavatnik awardees will be announced at the end of the Yale Innovation Summit by Yale President Peter Salovey.

The Yale Innovation Summit will be held Wed., May 10, 8am-5pm. Highlights include: biotech and tech tracks; panels and keynotes with leading investors; a biotech and tech pitchoff; an outdoor poster session displaying cutting-edge Yale discoveries; breakfast and lunch; networking opportunities; Blavatnik Fund award announcements; closing remarks by Yale President Peter Salovey.  Presented by the Yale Office of Cooperative Research and Yale Entrepreneurial Institute. At Evans Hall, 165 Whitney Ave.

CONTACT: Brita Belli, Communications Officer, Yale Innovation & Entrepreneurship, (203)804-1911, brita.belli@yale.edu.