Past Events

A Look at the Great Things We’ve Done for the Life Science Industry

with Ross Devol

June 29, 2012 | St. Louis, Missouri

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On Friday, June 29th the American Life Sciences Innovation Council (ALSIC) joined with the Missouri Biotechnology Association (MOBIO) and the Center for Emerging Technologies tohost a breakfast discussion on America’s leadership role in the biomedical industry. Nearly 50 people were in the audience representing groups such as Washington University in St. Louis, the leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Bio STL, TheraMind, BioGenerator, Orion Genomic, the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association, Bioventures, St. Louis Community College and Galera Therapeutics. A number of elected officials and representatives of their offices were also in attendance.

From left to right: Barbara Enneking, Kelly Gillespie, and Ross DeVol.

From left to right: Barbara Enneking, Kelly Gillespie, and Ross DeVol.

Barbara Enneking, Vice President of Enterprise Development for the Center for Emerging Technologies began the program by greeting attendees and welcoming them to the Center. MOBIO Executive Director Kelly Gillespie spoke next, acknowledging the many elected officials in attendance and introducing Ross DeVol.

DeVol presented his recent study titled “The Global Biomedical Industry: Preserving U.S. Leadership.” In the presentation, he highlighted the growing competition from other countries in the biomedical industry. He covered several areas that cause concern for the United States: declining enrollment of foreign students at American colleges and universities; clinical trial costs that are non-competitive; and the highest corporate taxation rate of OECD countries.

DeVol closed his comments by suggesting policies that elected officials should support, including making R&D tax incentives permanent, cutting corporate tax rates to match the OECD average, and improving STEM education.

During the question and answer period, DeVol was asked what can be done to improve STEM education in the United States; he stressed the need to get kids excited about math and science between first and third grade. Studies show that it is virtually impossible to get students excited about their areas of study if they haven’t gained an interest by third grade.

Following the formal presentation DeVol stayed to speak with attendees and was impressed with the quality of questions and discussion.



with Ross Devol & Rep. Erik Paulsen

June 15, 2012 | Minnetonka, Minnesota

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On Friday, June 15th Ross DeVol, Chief Research Officer at the Milken Institute, presented his recent study, “The Global Biomedical Industry: Preserving U.S. Leadership” at the Saving Lives, Creating Jobs forum put on by the Freedom Foundation of Minnesota and LifeScience Alley. The audience had over 100 attendees which including current state legislators, candidates, and other business and opinion leaders from throughout the Twin Cities.

Milken Institute Chief Research Officer Ross DeVol (left) and Rep. Erik Paulsen (right).
Milken Institute Chief Research Officer Ross DeVol (left) and Rep. Erik Paulsen (right).

During the question and answer period, there was much interest in how Minnesota can preserve and grow its biomedical industry.

Other speakers at the conference included Congressman Erik Paulsen from the Third Congressional District of Minnesota. Congressman Paulsen discussed his work as the Chairman of the US House of Representatives Medical Technology Caucus and his leadership role in working to repeal the Medical Device Tax under the Affordable Care Act. The Congressman went on to describe how the medical device tax and other regulations can harm the industry and stifle innovation and jobs.

Others also spoke at the forum. Shaye Mandle, Vice President of Government Relations of LifeScience Alley,gave an overview of Minnesota’s biomedical industries, Jeff Trewhitt of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) highlighted his findings from the Minnesota Clinical Trials report and Frestedt, Inc. President Dr. Joy Frestedt discussed the Minnesota Clinical Research Alliance promoting the positive impact clinical trials have for patients and the local economy.

Before Mr. DeVol’s presentations he sat down with Arundhati Parmar, the Minnesota Bureau Chief of the “MedCity News,” to discuss the findings of his study.


with Ross Devol

May 9, 2012 | Madison, Wisconsin

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The Milken Institute's Chief Research Officer Ross DeVol and BioForward Executive Director Bryan Renk

Ross DeVol, Chief Research Officer at the Milken Institute presented his recent study, The Global Biomedical Industry: Preserving U.S. Leadership at the Wisconsin bio affiliate, BioForward’s May 9th meeting.  Over 50 bioscience company leaders based throughout Wisconsin were in attendance including representatives from Norvo Nordisk, Baker Tilly, Pfizer, Inc., and the University of Wisconsin- Madison.

The BioForward partners were very interested in the findings of Mr. DeVol’s report. The biotech industry is very strong in Wisconsin and BioForward has been to Washington D.C. twice in as many months to voice their support for reauthorization of user fees that fund the FDA, understanding that the FDA can only function properly if it is fully funded.

Mr. DeVol’s presentation was covered by Brian Clark for Following the event Mr. DeVol had a 45 minute interview with Judy Newman, business and biotech reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal.  Ms. Newman has been following Mr. DeVol’s work for several years and was very excited to have a chance to interview him.  In their interview they discussed the findings of the report and what needs to be done to keep the United States leadership role in this key industry.  Ms. Newman and Mr. DeVol also discussed the potential for a leadership role for Madison and Wisconsin in general in the Biomedical and biotechnology industry.

Media Coverage:
Tech and Biotech: Federal changes needed to boost biotech, speaker says
WisBusiness: Expert sees need for reforms to keep U.S. leadership in biotech”


with Sen. Bennet

April 5, 2012 | Denver Colorado

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Key issues from the Milken Institute report and industry specific issues were discussed during the roundtable discussion — following Ross DeVol’s presentation. Holli Riebel requested that Senator Bennet be thoughtful of cuts to the Medicare Program, specifically stating that cuts to Part D and Part B could cut access to new therapies and eventually hinder investments to start-up companies.

Ross DeVol, Chief Research Officer, the Milken Institute

Holli also stated that the industry has made a lot of concessions with health reform — like closing the donut hole and accepting additional tax burdens. She explained the issues the industry sees with IPAB and requested the Senator be thoughtful as that process unfolds.

Ed Fitzgerald reiterated the length of time and costs for drug development, and emphasized that shortening the timeline of data exclusivity will hinder the ability of companies to invest in innovation.

David Kenney, Senator Michael Bennet, Rohini Kosoglu, Dr. Kiki Traylor, Richard C. Duke
Holli Riebel, Rohini Kosoglu, Senator Michael Bennet

Dr. Kristina Lybecker and Dr. Kiki Traylor thanked Senator Bennet for his work on the Trans-Pacific Partnership and requested that he maintain his leadership in this area — requesting for the 12 year data exclusivity to remain intact.