Tejal Desai, PhD, Ernest L. Prien Professor & Chair, Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, UCSF

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Dr. Tejal Desai is currently the Ernest L. Prien Professor and Chair of the department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco. She is also a member of the California Institute for Quantitative Biomedical Research, PI of the UCSF/UC Berkeley Graduate Group in Bioengineering Training Grant, and founding director of the UCSF/UC Berkeley Master’s in Translational Medicine.   She received the Sc.B. degree in Biomedical Engineering from Brown University in 1994 and the Ph.D. degree in bioengineering from the joint graduate program at University of California, Berkeley and the University of California, San Francisco, in 1998.  Dr. Desai currently directs the Laboratory of Therapeutic Micro and Nanotechnology where her research focuses on using micro and nanofabrication techniques to develop devices for cell and drug delivery, scaffolds for cell and tissue regeneration, and functional biomaterials. In addition to authoring over 200 technical papers and delivering over 200 invited talks, she has chaired and organized numerous conferences and symposia in the area of bioMEMS, micro and nanofabricated biomaterials, and micro/nanoscale drug delivery/tissue engineering.  Her other interests include K-12 educational outreach, gender and science education, science policy issues, and biotechnology/bioengineering industrial outreach. 

Her research efforts have earned recognition including Technology Review’s "Top 100 Young Innovators,” Popular Science’s Brilliant 10, and NSF’s New Century Scholar. Some of her other honors include the Eurand Grand Prize Award for innovative drug delivery technology, the Young Career Award from the Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (IEEE EMBS), the Dawson Biotechnology award, and the UC Berkeley and Brown University Distinguished Engineering Alumni awards.  In 2015, she was elected to the National Academy of Medicine

Joe DeSimone, PhD, CEO & Co-Founder, Carbon

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Dr. Joseph M. DeSimone (53) is the CEO/Co-founder of Carbon, Inc. located in Silicon Valley. Prior to this, DeSimone was the Chancellor's Eminent Professor of Chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and William R. Kenan, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at North Carolina State University and of Chemistry at UNC. DeSimone has published over 350 scientific articles (> 21,000 citations and H-index = 70) and has nearly 200 issued patents in his name with over 200 patents pending. DeSimone has mentored and trained 73 postdoctoral research associates and has graduated 80 PhD students from his group, 50% of whom are women and people from underrepresented groups in the sciences. = In June, 2016 DeSimone was recognized by President Barack Obama with the National Medal of Technology and Innovation.

DeSimone is one of fewer than twenty individuals who have been elected to all three branches of the U.S. National Academies:  the National Academy of Medicine (2014), the National Academy of Sciences (2012), and the National Academy of Engineering (2005). He is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2005). DeSimone has received over 50 major awards and recognitions including the 2017 $250,000 Heinz Award for Technology, the Economy and Employment; the inaugural $250,000 Kabiller Prize in Nanoscience and Nanomedicine; the 2015 Dickson Prize from Carnegie Mellon University; the 2014 Industrial Research Institute Medal; the 2014 Kathryn C. Hach Award for Entrepreneurial Success; the 2012 Walston Chubb Award for Innovation by Sigma Xi; the 2010 AAAS Mentor Award in recognition of his efforts to advance diversity in the chemistry PhD workforce; the 2009 NIH Director’s Pioneer Award; the 2009 North Carolina Award; the 2008 $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize for Invention and Innovation; the 2002 John Scott Award presented by the City Trusts, Philadelphia, given to "the most deserving" men and women whose inventions have contributed in some outstanding way to the "comfort, welfare and happiness" of mankind; and the 2002 Engineering Excellence Award by DuPont.

DeSimone is the co-founder of several companies including Micell Technologies, Bioabsorbable Vascular Solutions, Liquidia Technologies, and Carbon. DeSimone received his B.S. in Chemistry in 1986 from Ursinus College in Collegeville, PA and his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 1990 from Virginia Tech. He currently resides in Monte Sereno, California with his wife of 30 years, Suzanne.

Sam Hawgood, MBBS, Chancellor, UC San Francisco

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Sam Hawgood, MBBS, is the Chancellor and the Arthur and Toni Rembe Rock Distinguished Professor at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).

Hawgood was dean of the UCSF School of Medicine and vice chancellor for medical affairs from 2009-2014, after assuming the role of interim dean in December of 2007. His distinguished career at UCSF includes serving as chair of the Department of Pediatrics and associate director of the Cardiovascular Research Institute

Hawgood joined UCSF as a research fellow in 1982, and maintained his laboratory through 2015. His focus on the proteins associated with pulmonary surfactant has led to a multi-disciplinary Program Project Grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, which has supported his work continuously since then and gained him an international reputation in neonatology research.

Numerous organizations and publications have recognized Hawgood’s scientific contributions over the past few decades. Hawgood is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Association of Physicians, and in 2010 was elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), part of the National Academy of Sciences.

Hawgood maintained an active presence in clinical medicine, including serving first as division chief of the Division of Neonatology, then as chair of Pediatrics and physician-in-chief of the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital prior to becoming dean. From 2004 through 2014 he was also president of the UCSF Medical Group, the faculty association that represents more than 1,800 physicians.

As dean of the School of Medicine, he oversaw an organization with an operating budget of more than $1.7 billion, nearly 8,000 faculty and staff, and around 3,655 medical and graduate students, residents, fellows and postdoctoral scholars.

Under his leadership, the school became the top medical school in the nation in research funding from the National Institutes of Health ($439.6 million in 2013), with many of its departments also leading the nation in their fields, reflecting the caliber of scientific research on campus. In that time, the school also became the only medical school in the nation to rank in the top five in both research- and primary care education (#4 in each), in the US News & World Report’s annual assessment of graduate schools.

The school’s clinical faculty is renowned for world-class medical care through its practice in the top-ranked UCSF Medical Center, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital, Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute, San Francisco General Hospital & Trauma Center, and the San Francisco Veterans’ Administration Medical Center.

As chancellor, Hawgood oversees the entire $5.45 billion UCSF enterprise, which also includes top-ranking schools of dentistry, nursing and pharmacy, as well as a graduate division and affiliated hospitals.

A native of Australia, Hawgood graduated medical school with First Class Honors from the University of Queensland in Brisbane. He trained in pediatrics as a resident, followed by specialization in neonatology.

Wende Hutton, General Partner, Canaan Partners


Wende identifies, builds and invests in companies that change medicine by bringing novel drugs, technologies and devices to market. She has partnered with founders to deliver more than a dozen of those innovations to patients. She started her venture career as a General Partner at Mayfield. She previously held senior marketing roles at GenPharm and Nellcor. Wende holds an A.B. in human biology from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

Tina Ivovic, Senior Director, Global Field Health Economics and Reimbursement, Abbott

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Tina Ivovic is an expert in Medical Device Reimbursement with a focus on Medicare and Commercial payer policy development, administrative code creation, and payment optimization, and has spent her career not only creating reimbursement structures, but implementing reimbursement best practices at hospitals to help them maintain financial viability. After spending nearly 12 years with Thoratec Corporation, she moved over to St. Jude Medical when Thoratec was acquired, and then to Abbott when St. Jude Medical was acquired, and has been the Global Senior Director of Field Reimbursement and Health Care Economics and the Therapy Leader for Heart Failure for the past 2 and a half years. In addition to her abilities in the reimbursement arena, she also is a thought leader for the changing health care landscape, concentrating on the Affordable Care Act and the move to value-based health care delivery.  She has given dozens of main-stage international and national presentations on these topics, as well as Medicare policy and reimbursement structures. 

Prior to joining Abbott, Tina spent 3 years working as Manager of Strategic Policy Services at Covance Health Economics and Outcomes Services where she advised multiple pharmaceutical company and device manufacturer clients.  Just prior to Covance, she worked for the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida for 3 years, directing the coding, training, and compliance staff for both the clinic and hospital.  Before that, she worked for the George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates, Division of Primary Care, where she advised the 60-physician group on regulatory changes, coding practice, and compliance.  Additionally, she has worked as a project manager for Cyborgan, Inc., a start-up biomedical device company, and as a practice administrator for a neurological surgery group.  Ms. Ivovic received a B.A. in both Psychology and Philosophy from Mount Holyoke College. She lives outside of Annapolis, Maryland.


Josh Makower, MD, General Partner, New Enterprise Associates

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Josh Makower is a General Partner on NEA's healthcare team leading their medtech/healthtech practice. Josh is also the Founder and Executive Chairman of ExploraMed, a medical device incubator that has created 8 companies over the past 20 years. Notable transactions from the ExploraMed portfolio include NeoTract, acquired by Teleflex in 2017, Nuelle, acquired by Aytu in 2017, Acclarent, acquired by J&J in 2009, EndoMatrix, acquired by C.R. Bard in 1997 and TransVascular, acquired by Medtronic in 2003. On-going ExploraMed/NEA ventures include Moximed, Willow and Exploramed V. In addition to his role at NEA, Josh serves on the faculty of the Stanford University Medical School as a Consulting Professor of Medicine and is Co-Founder of Stanford's Biodesign Innovation Program. Josh currently serves on the board of directors for DOTS Devices, Eargo, ExploraMed, Intrinsic Therapeutics, Moximed, Willow, SetPoint Medical and Coravin. Josh holds over 300 patents and patent applications for various medical devices in the fields of cardiology, ENT, general surgery, drug delivery, obesity, orthopedics, women's health, and urology. He received an MBA from Columbia University, an MD from the NYU School of Medicine, and a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.

Kate Rosenbluth, PhD, Co-Founder & CEO, Cala Health

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Kate Rosenbluth is co-founder and CEO of Cala Health, a medical technology company pioneering a new class of electrical medicine to treat chronic disease non-invasively by stimulating peripheral nerves with  body-worn electronics.  She has developed cutting-edge neurotherapies with Brainlab, Autonomic Technologies, and Genentech. She was a lecturer and fellow in Stanford Technology Ventures Program and Biodesign and a Postdoctoral Fellow in UCSF Neurosurgery. She is a committed educator and has launched forward-looking programs including the Masters of Translational Medicine at UC Berkeley and the Accel Innovation Scholars at Stanford. She serves on the Strategy Group of the Center for Healthcare Innovation and the McKinsey Women’s Executive Roundtable. Kate has authored more than 50 patents and peer-reviewed publications.

Renee Compton Ryan, VP, Venture Investments, J&J Innovation


Renee Compton Ryan is Vice President of Investments at the Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation, and is based at the Johnson & Johnson Innovation Center in California. Renee supports the investments for our Medical Devices and Diagnostics businesses and is a passionate supporter of medical innovation.

Formerly, Renee was a Managing Director at Baird in Palo Alto, CA overseeing the medical device investment banking practice.  Prior to Baird, Renee oversaw the build out of the West Coast healthcare investment banking practice at Jefferies & Co.  In total, Renee has approximately 20 years of healthcare investment banking experience at firms such as Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse.  She has structured over $15 Billion of transactions during this time including M&A, venture financing and public offerings of debt and equity.

Renee earned her B.A. in economics at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and an MBA from Columbia University.

Jeffrey Shuren, MD, JD, Director, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, FDA


Jeffrey Shuren, MD, JD is the Director of the Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH) at FDA. He previously served as Acting Center Director. Dr. Shuren has held various policy and planning positions within FDA from 1998 to 2009, including Acting Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning, and Budget; Associate Commissioner for Policy and Planning; and Special Counsel to the Principal Deputy Commissioner. Dr. Shuren is board certified in Neurology and served as an Assistant Professor of Neurology at the University of Cincinnati. In 1998, Dr. Shuren joined FDA as a Medical Officer in the Office of Policy. In 2000, he served as a detailee on the Senate HELP Committee. In 2001, he became the Director of the Division of Items and Devices in the Coverage and Analysis Group at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. From 1998 to 2003, he served as a Staff Volunteer in the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Cognitive Neuroscience Section supervising and designing clinical studies on human reasoning. Dr. Shuren returned to FDA as the Assistant Commissioner for Policy in 2003, and assumed his current position in September 2009.

Benson Smith, Chairman, Teleflex


Benson F. Smith is currently the Chairman of Teleflex Incorporated. Mr. Smith officially retired from his Chief Executive Officer role at Teleflex on December 31, 2017. Teleflex is a global provider of medical technologies designed to improve the health and quality of people’s lives. Teleflex applies purpose-driven innovation with a relentless pursuit of identifying unmet clinical needs to benefit patients and healthcare providers. Teleflex’s portfolio is diverse, with solutions in the fields of vascular and interventional access, surgical, anesthesia, cardiac care, urology, emergency medicine and respiratory care. Headquartered in Wayne, PA, Teleflex employs approximately 12,600 people worldwide and serves healthcare providers across the globe.

Mr. Smith was named Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Teleflex Incorporated in January 2011 after serving on the Teleflex Board since 2005. Prior to 2011, he was the Founding Partner of Sales Research Group, a research and consulting organization. From January 2000 to December 2005, Mr. Smith was a Speaker and an Author at The Gallup Organization. He also served as the Leader of Gallup’s Global Sales Force Effectiveness Practice. Prior to that, Mr. Smith worked for C.R. Bard, Inc., a company specializing in medical devices, for approximately 25 years. At C.R. Bard, he held various executive and senior level positions culminating as President and Chief Operating Officer until 1998. He also served as a member of its Board of Directors.

He was previously on the Board of Rochester Medical Corporation and Chairman of the Board of Zoll Medical Corporation until its sale to Asahi Kasei Group in April 2012. He also serves on a variety of academic and health-related organizations.

Mr. Smith holds a B.A. degree from Grinnell College and was a Post Graduate Watson Fellow.

Andrew Thompson, CEO, Proteus Digital Health

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Andrew Thompson is Co-Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Proteus Digital Health. His vision for digital medicines is focused on expanding global access to care, dramatically increasing the value delivered by drugs and creating a more sustainable model for innovation that leverages the cell phone in everyone's pocket.

He is also a Co-Founder and Board Member of Summit Schools, a leading Charter School organization with an acclaimed track record and unique digital platform, featured in the Davis Guggenheim movie "Waiting for Superman".

Thompson is active in digital humanities innovation as a Member of the Stanford University Libraries and Academic Information Resources Council and with Cambridge University. He is a Co-Founder of Parker Library Online - a leading destination for digital medieval studies.

He holds master's degrees in Engineering (Cambridge), Education (Stanford) and Business (Stanford GSB) and has a successful 25 year track record starting and building technology based healthcare companies in Silicon Valley.

Christine Winoto, Founder and Director, Rosenman Institute; Deputy Director, QB3


Christine Winoto, Director of the Rosenman Institute, Deputy Director of QB3, Co-Founder and Venture Partner at MedTech Venture Partners I LLP, manages the QB3 Life Science Pitch Summit program, the QB3-JPMorgan Chase program for women and diversity in life sciences, and QB3 operations. Before joining QB3, she developed business plan and marketing strategy and capital planning for Kaiser Permanente and managed business development at Genencor. In addition to consulting for startups and venture capital, she has held R&D and operations positions in medical device companies including Physiometrix (IPO, then acquired by Hospira), Cardiovasc and Heartport. Christine also worked in mergers and acquisitions for a European investment bank. Christine holds an MBA from Erasmus University in the Netherlands and a BS in food chemistry from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.