Monday, November 10, 2014

Colorado BioScience Association Showcases Industry’s Best at 2014 Awards Dinner Celebration

Colorado BioScience Association (CBSA) announced winners of its 11th annual industry awards at the Marriott City Center, Denver, on November 6. The announcement is made by April Giles, CBSA President and CEO, who opened the evening with an overview of this year’s industry accomplishments.

Giles was joined by 850 KOA’s Steffan Tubbs and CBSA Board Chair Derek Cole, announcing the following winners:

Company of the Year: AlloSource

AlloSource, based in Centennial, is committed to its success and growth in Colorado’s bioscience community. Expanding its Colorado headquarters by 90,000 square feet in 2012, the company continued the momentum in 2013 by launching a new proprietary allograft used in a broad range of soft tissue surgical procedures. Most recently in 2014, AlloSource announced two new partnerships which will expand their work in stem cell innovation as well as undertake a new project with NASA through the Space Act Agreement. This work will advance microbial research in tissue processing for various Mars missions. Visit: . Finalists for Company of the Year were: Mountainside Medical, Boulder, and Spectranetics, Colorado Springs,

Rising Star of the Year: ViroCyt 

ViroCyt, Boulder, launched the first Virus Counter in 2011, which has proven to be faster, more accurate and cost effective than traditional viral quantification methods with results in minutes instead of days or weeks. This year ViroCyt announced the introduction of the next generation Virus Counter at the World Vaccine Congress held in Washington, DC. The technology has already been adopted by the leading companies in the fields of viral vaccine development and therapeutic protein expression. Virocyt’s innovations are changing the landscape of virus detection technologies. Visit: Finalists for Rising Star were: JustRight Surgical, Boulder, and Silvergate Pharmaceuticals, Greenwood Village,

Lifetime Achievement: Dr. Richard Duke

Dr. Duke is an accomplished scientist with over 25 years of experience in cutting-edge biomedical research, and is a tenured faculty member in the Departments of Medicine and Immunology at the University of Colorado Denver. He has been instrumental in the development of Colorado’s bioscience industry as an executive, inventor, biomedical researcher and serial entrepreneur. Dr. Duke was involved in the formation and management of GlobeImmune, Newellink USA, ApopLogic Pharmaceuticals, Sierra Neuropharmaceuticals, PeptiVir, MenoGeniX and Aurora Oncology. He has also been integral to these Colorado-based companies, by raising more than $200 million in financing and helped bring multiple products to human clinical trials.

One of the Colorado bioscience industry’s proudest achievements was the creation of the BioScience Discovery Evaluation Grant Program (also referred to as BDEG). Dr. Duke was the visionary and driving force behind the development of BDEG, making the program what it is today. This initial concept in 2006 has now become a national model for state’s trying to cultivate a bioscience industry of their own.

Institute Leadership: Jim Rosa

During last year’s Awards Dinner, CBSA introduced a new award, the Institute Leadership award. This award was created to recognize outstanding efforts that further the Colorado Bioscience Institute’s mission of providing education, workforce and career development for life science professionals, companies, students and teachers. This year, CBSA honors one outstanding Institute champion, Jim Rosa, for his leadership on the workforce training programs. The workforce training programs involve partners with deep content expertise and a strong commitment to advancing knowledge and closing workforce gaps in Colorado’s bioscience eco-system.

Business Partner of the Year: Phyllis Arthur, BIO

CBSA’s 2014 Business Partner of the Year is Phyllis Arthur, Senior Director of Vaccines, Immunotherapeutics and Diagnostics Policy at the Biotechnology Industry Organization. Ms. Arthur was a remarkable partner for CBSA on Senate Bill 222, becoming the bioscience industry’s taskforce representative and also forging lasting relationships with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, the Colorado Children's Immunization Coalition and many other stakeholders. In the end, the taskforce collectively - and unanimously – agreed to all of the recommendations for Colorado. Phyllis continues to remain involved during the implementation phase and will act as a resource providing national best practice models and allowing the State to leverage her relationships and knowledge base.

Educator of the Year: Deborah Carnevale

Deborah Carnevale is the Director of the Overland High School Biotechnology Program. Under her leadership, the school’s biotechnology program has received multiple grants and certifications. Students who have completed the program have an advantage when entering college. Their advanced research skills in biotechnology has enabled many of them to receive laboratory jobs as university freshmen, a rare opportunity. Her dedication and commitment to her students is commendable.

Volunteer of the Year: Amy Wedeking Shannon

Ms. Shannon is Principal Consultant for Caliber One Solutions and an active participant on CBSA’s Membership Committee. Her knowledge base and relationships in the community have proven to be very valuable to the membership efforts of CBSA. Her drive is tireless and capable when bringing new members into the organization. Amy also provides great leadership and insight through her recommendations to better the committee process. In the words of Committee Chair (and 2013 Volunteer of the Year) Dustin Whistler, the committee is very lucky to have her.

Chairman’s Award: Monisha Merchant

Monisha Merchant serves as Senior Policy Advisor to Senator Michael Bennet and has been a tremendous leader for the bioscience industry and the State as a whole. During the development of the 2011 America Invents Act, Senator Bennet co-authored a provision to establish three United States Satellite Patent and Trademark Offices. Ms. Merchant’s commitment to the goal of securing a satellite office in Colorado was truly commendable. She helped to spearhead the process and forged an incredible coalition of public and private partners which ultimately led to the selection of the Denver site. This achievement will not only better the entrepreneurs in the state and also across the region. Ms. Merchant also played an integral role in leveraging her influence and relationships to create the Blackstone Entrepreneurial Network (BEN) in Colorado. BEN links Master Entrepreneurs across industries and regions to support high growth entrepreneurial activities. Most recently, she facilitated the “Bioscience in Colorado” day where she and Senator Bennet invited key community leaders to explore the industry’s eco-system.

About the Awards Dinner 

The Awards Dinner began with a cocktail reception followed by dinner and the awards program. In addition, the Boettcher Foundation presented its 2014 Class of Boettcher Investigators in the Webb-Waring Biomedical Research Program. The event closed with a keynote address by Olympic cycling medalist and Parkinson’s survivor Davis Phinney.

Phinney, diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2000 at the age of 40, founded the Boulder-based Davis Phinney Foundation in 2004. Today, Phinney is both a role model in the cycling community and an inspiration to the estimated 1.5 million Americans and estimated 10 million worldwide who are currently living with the disease. Tens of thousands of people living with this disease have been directly touched by one of the Davis Phinney Foundation programs or through Davis Phinney’s inspirational message: “it is possible to live well with Parkinson’s today.” For more information, visit: and

Sponsors of the Awards Dinner included: Boettcher Foundation; Cooley, LLP; Fisher Scientific, Fitzsimons Redevelopment Authority, Medtronic and Terumo BCT.

Link to the Business Wire Newswire

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