Kick-Off Keynote (November 7th)
Dr. Corinna Lathan
Brain Scientist; Technology Pioneer; Founder & CEO, Anthrotronix
Dr. Lathan is a technology entrepreneur who has developed robots for kids with disabilities, virtual reality technology for the space station, and wearable sensors for training surgeons and soldiers. She is a global thought-leader in the relationship between technology and human performance and believes in a future of benevolent cyborgs.
Founder and CEO of AnthroTronix (est. 1999), Lathan has led projects from agencies such as DARPA, NASA, NIH, and NSF and recently developed one of the first FDA-cleared digital health platforms winning a prestigious Gold Edison Award. For this work, she was named a 2017 Woman to Watch by Disruptive Women in Health Care. Dr. Lathan has been featured in Forbes, Time, and the New Yorker magazines and her work has led to such distinctions as MIT Technology Review Magazine’s “Top 100 World Innovators,” and one of Fast Company’s “Most Creative People in Business.”
Dr. Lathan is a social advocate and actively involved in STEM educational outreach programs that empower women and minorities in science and technology. She founded Keys to Empowering Youth (est. 1992) for junior high school girls, coached for the FIRST and VEX robotics program, and advised the Smithsonian Institute’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. Dr. Lathan is on the Boards of the KID Museum Makerspace and Engineering World Health, which provides opportunities to college students to support the emergence of healthcare technology in the developing world. Cori is also the parent of two LGBT children and is passionate about LGBT issues and has written about her family’s experience for the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Blog.
Luncheon Keynote (November 8th)
Founder of Sickboy Podcast
Jeremie is an award-winning actor, producer and host of popular original Canadian media, including film, television and podcasts. He lives with a genetic lung disease called Cystic Fibrosis.
Jeremie was born and raised on the East Coast of Canada. After discovering his passion for performance through competitive improv, he was accepted into the acting program at Ryerson Theatre School. Soon after, Jeremie began his career as a professional actor. He hosted the Gemini and Canadian Screen Award-winning CBC children’s television series “ARTZOOKA!” and the National Film Board of Canada’s educational documentary series “Space School”.
In the culmination of Jeremie’s affinity for laughter and education, Sickboy Podcast was founded. Listed as one of iTunes Best Of 2015, Sickboy Podcast is produced and hosted by Jeremie and his two best friends Taylor MacGillivary and Brian Stever. Together they explore conversations with a wide range of guests, talking and laughing about the experiences of living with terminal or chronic illness. Sickboy Podcast aims to tear down the walls of stigma and find levity in an otherwise dark situation.
Jeremie is a brilliant speaker, his keynotes having been described as “simply the most thought-provoking, powerful talk I’ve ever witnessed.” CBC released an acclaimed documentary on Sickboy in October 2017, just weeks before Jeremie gave a rousing standing ovation for his talk at TEDxToronto.
Jeremie is currently based out of Halifax Nova Scotia where he lives with his wife Bryde and their oversized muffin of a dog, Bigby.
Special Guest Speaker
Dr. James Robar, PhD, FCCPM
Dr. James Robar is the Chief of Medical Physics at the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA), Professor of Radiation Oncology at Dalhousie University and Founding Director of the Masters, Doctoral and Certificate programs in Medical Physics at Dalhousie University. He divides his time between a leadership role at NSHA, direct support of patient treatment with expertise in stereotactic radiotherapy and radiosurgery, and R&D with a focus on cutting-edge technologies that improve the treatment of cancer patients. Dr. Robar believes that academic-industry partnerships form an essential conduit in allowing new technologies to benefit patients around the world. He has been a co-founder of Canadian spinoff companies including Halifax-based Adaptiiv Medical Technologies. Dr. Robar is dedicated to the promotion and assurance of safety and quality in radiation oncology and radiosurgery, serving as an expert in the Novalis Certified Program. A champion of quality education in science, he is Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Educational Programs (CAMPEP) and serves on the board of the Discovery Centre.
CEO, Appili Therapeutics
Mr. Sullivan has over 15 years’ experience working with early stage biotechnology companies and has raised over $37M in private equity and non-dilutive government funding in biotechnology. Most recently he was Chief Executive Officer at DeNovaMed Inc., a biotechnology company focused on development of Gram-negative and Gram-positive antibiotics. Previously, he was Chief Operating Officer at Viron Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company developing a novel immunotherapy and recipient of the Prix Galien Award for Biotechnology. At Viron, he and his team completed development of the Company’s lead program through Phase 2 clinical development with Series A and B financing from a syndicate of international venture capital including two pharma-venture participants. He is an active mentor and volunteer advisor for several start-up biotechnology companies. Mr. Sullivan received a BSc in Immunology from Dalhousie University, a Graduate Certificate in Biotechnology from McGill University and an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business (UWO).
Dr. Corinna Lathan (BioInnovation Challenge Host – Day 1)
Brain Scientist; Technology Pioneer; Founder & CEO, Anthrotronix
Our kick-off keynote, Dr. Corinna Lathan, will also host day one of the BioInnovation Challenge.
Brett Dickey, PhD (BioInnovation Challenge Host – Day 2)
Co-Founder & CTO of Covina Biomedical Inc.
2015 BioInnovation Challenge Winner
Brett is a co-founder and CTO of Covina Biomedical Inc., an orthopaedic device start-up developing new biomaterials for use in minimally invasive treatments to enhance surgeon efficiency and maximize patient outcomes. Brett earned a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering (2010) and subsequently his Doctorate in Biomedical Engineering (2016) from Dalhousie University. His PhD research investigated adaptations to the chemistry of glass-based cements with a goal to expand their use beyond their traditional dental market and into the $1B orthopaedic bone cement market. It was this research that became the foundation for Covina’s technology platform to stabilize both bone fractures and orthopaedic implants. Brett has made 18 contributions to the scientific literature, is co-inventor on three granted patents, and was a finalist in the Emerging Professional category at the 2016 Discovery Awards. After winning the 2015 BioInnovation Challenge, Covina has gone on to be selected for the prestigious Canadian Technology Accelerator program in Boston, has won several awards in pitch competitions throughout Massachusetts, and has raised over $1.6m in equity and non-dilutive funding.
Linda Plano (Provided expert pitch training to participants prior to conference)
Expert Pitch Training Coach
Linda Plano is an expert pitch training coach with over 10 years of experience mentoring entrepreneurs with start-ups in life sciences, cleantech, high tech, web-based applications and more. Upon earning a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering from Stanford University and a BS in Physics from MIT, Plano held positions at various science-based companies. The combination of her high-level education and experience in business has allowed her to help entrepreneurs in many complex fields.
Plano has been coaching entrepreneurs on their pitches and value propositions since 2005. She founded Plano & Simple in 2010 to focus exclusively on coaching, training and mentoring entrepreneurs. This has led her to work with nearly 600 entrepreneurs, who have gone on to raise well over $250M. Plano has worked with a diverse number of clients, from first time entrepreneurs, to serial entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs. Although she is based in Boston, she has delivered her services to clients all over the world.
Jennifer Hamilton (BioInnovation Challenge Judge)
Senior Director, New Ventures (Canada), Johnson & Johnson Innovation
Advisor, Impact Investing, J&J Global Community Impact
Jennifer Hamilton has scouted, cross-sector, for new opportunities for Johnson & Johnson in Canada since 2010 – first with the Corporate Office of Science and Technology (COSAT) and now with J&J Innovation. As well, Jennifer serves as the industry representative on the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR, Canadian equivalent of NIH) Standing Committee on Ethics. Since 2017, Jennifer has additionally worked with the J&J Global Community Impact team on a new initiative to test Impact Investing in global health where she is seeking healthcare investments worldwide that have social impact and financial return enabling scaling of technology and services in ultra-low resource settings.
Prior to working with J&J, Jennifer spent 17 years in biotech venture capital as Venture Partner at UK-based Nomura Phase4 Ventures and an Investment Director with Rothschild Asset Management covering North American and Canada respectively. She has also been an advisor to early and late-stage companies, venture funds and pension funds giving financing, business development and M&A advice. Jennifer has an MSc and a PhD in Experimental Pathology/Lipid Metabolism from the University of British Columbia and a BSc from the University of Guelph.
Gerry Lacroix, CPA, CA (BioInnovation Challenge Judge)
Technology Sector Leader – Nova Scotia
Grant Thornton LLP
Gerry Lacroix is an assurance partner with Grant Thornton LLP. With more than 24 years of experience as an accounting and business advisor, he understands what it takes to build a successful business. As the current leader of Grant Thornton’s Nova Scotia Technology Sector Group, Gerry leads a team of more than 20 advisors with a focus on working with technology-forward businesses looking to grow, expand, or start-up. He and his team help entrepreneurs in the life sciences sector, understand the complexities of the financial and business management aspects of running a business; from developing financial models and issuing shares to investors, to setting up the proper business structure and internal controls to allow a business to remain agile, so it can grow quickly and efficiently.
John Holyoake (BioInnovation Challenge Judge)
Managing Director, Investment Banking
Bloom Burton & Co.
John Holyoake, Managing Director, Investment Banking, joined Bloom Burton & Co. in January 2012. At Bloom Burton, John’s responsibilities also include overseeing Monetization Planning, Bloom Burton’s strategic consulting service, and supporting Bloom Burton’s portfolio of incubated companies.
John currently serves on the Board of directors of Appili Therapeutics, Satellos Bioscience, The Canadian Glycomics Network (GlycoNet), and Triumvira Immunologics. Additionally, John advises Canada’s research institutions on their commercialization efforts, including as part of GlycoNet’s commercialization committee and as a member of the Core Evaluation Team for Genome Canada’s Genomic Applications Partnership Program.
John holds a Master’s in Biochemistry and Doctorate from the University of Oxford, and carried out post-doctoral research at The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto.
Jeremie Saunders (BIC Junior Host)
Founder of Sickboy Podcast
Our Luncheon Keynote, Jeremie Saunders, will also host BIC Junior.
Doris Grant (BIC Junior Judge)
Director, Dalhousie Industry Liaison & Innovation
Martin Yuill (BIC Junior Judge)
Director, Emergence Bioscience Incubator
With an MBA degree from the University of South Africa, Martin is an experienced conceptualiser, strategist and implementor with significant management accomplishments and international work experience who leverages strategic, marketing, communications, and business development specializations to both launch new initiatives and drive organizational growth.
Martin has a track record of success building innovation hubs, developing angel investment networks, animating startup communities, and helping companies start and grow. Formerly a resident of Kelowna, BC and Peterborough, ON, in 2008 he launched the ORIC Kelowna Innovation Centre as the first best practice knowledge economy business incubator in the interior of British Columbia, and then, in 2013 launched The Cube as the first technology incubation program in eastern Ontario. Martin most recently served as both President & CEO and Director of Incubation and Acceleration at the Greater Peterborough DNA Cluster, as well as Director of Client Services at the Peterborough Region Angel Network (PRAN).
Martin is an active community member, having served, amongst other things, as a Board Member of the Centre of Excellence for Goat Research & Innovation; the FastStart Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative; and the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission. In addition, he has volunteered as a design consultant to the Trent Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre; as a member of the management team of the Peterborough Community Innovation Forum, and as a member of the Trent University Business Council.
Wayne Crawley, FCPA, FCA (BIC Junior Judge)
Wayne Crawley is a business builder involved with several private companies including Venor, Sports Entertainment Atlantic, Epix Engineering, Moore Executive Suites, and others.
Wayne had a 20 year career with Emera Inc. and successfully completed Business Development of over $1 billion in enterprise value. He has over 25 years of international experience in business development, strategy, operations, corporate effectiveness, audit, and finance.
Wayne has been active throughout his career serving the community and currently serves on the Board of the Halifax Convention Centre, Habitat for Humanity NS, Junior Achievement of Nova Scotia, and is an Honorary Lieutenant Colonel in the Canadian Military. He is also a member of the executive for Young Presidents Organization (YPO Gold Atlantic Chapter).
Wayne was recognized as Top 40 Under 40 in Canada in 2001.
Jessie Jollymore (BIC Junior Judge)
Executive Director, Hope Blooms
There is an old saying that it takes a village to raise a child, but Jessie Jollymore has experienced that sometimes it takes the children to raise the village.
Working as a Dietitian in inner city health for 15 years, she witnessed the challenges that people face every day with food security, isolation, and poverty. The idea bloomed of creating a sustainable micro-economy in the inner city, where children would be the change makers in growing local food systems, creating models for experiential education, and building a social enterprise that contributes back while paying it forward. This led to over 50 children leading the way in growing 4000 pounds of organic produce yearly for their community, building innovative outdoor classrooms, and running a successful Fresh Herb Dressing social enterprise, where 100% of proceeds go into growing food and scholarships. In 2016, the children won the top honour for Ernst and Young’s Social Entrepreneur of Year for Atlantic Canada. This past year the youth were named one of the top pitches on the CBC hit show, Dragons Den.
Jessie was named Canadian Living’s top 40 Women Change Makers in Canada for 2015; Received the Governor General Meritorious Service Medal in 2016; Social Innovator of the Year 2017.
When you change the way you look at things; the things you look at change.
Emerging Natural Products (Panel Sessions)
Wellness, preventative health and environmental sustainability are all a part of a trending billion dollar natural products market. Join us for two panel sessions to discuss the ecosystem of expertise, resources, and investment that bolsters commercialization in Atlantic Canada’s natural products industry.
Stephen Ball, MSc, MBA (Moderator)
Regional Director, NPC-Atlantic
Stephen is a forward-thinking, strategic problem solver with over 12 years in the international innovation space. With a background in biochemistry, Stephen has built this career on his scientific knowledge, fueled by his desire to use science to create real-world solutions.
Most recently, Stephen was Director of Sales and Marketing at BioVectra, a contract manufacturing company serving a global client base. There, he gained extensive understanding of various manufacturing processes such as fermentation, and their role in new product development. He was also exposed to the regulatory requirements of Good Manufacturing Practices, Environment Canada, Health Canada, and the FDA. Most importantly, he garnered a reputation for developing mutually-beneficial business relationships with clients and partners, helping the company significantly expand its market share.
Stephen was responsible for over $100 million in sales, providing extensive insight and leadership to project teams to ensure their viability. He also led corporate and academic research teams through the commercialization process, helping them manage issues in research, navigate regulatory compliance requirements, and negotiate intellectual property agreements.
Stephen has a BSc from Mount Allison, and received his MSc at Memorial University. He completed his MBA with a concentration in marketing at Saint Mary’s University.
Value of Medical Cannabis in the Health Market
The development of therapeutics from the active ingredients contained in cannabis are leading to important medical treatments. Join us as we discuss the health impacts and economic opportunities of the medical cannabis market within our region.
Dr. Bob Chapman (Panelist)
Chief Operating Officer, DoseCann Inc.
Dr. Chapman has been applying his broad practical experience in organic and analytical chemistry for the past nineteen years to solve problems of industrial relevance. Most recently, Dr. Chapman was a Principal Research Officer with the National Research Council Canada (͞”NRC”) ACRD Research Centre where he was responsible for leading a national program and strategic projects focused on the development of Natural Health Products and functional ingredients with private sector companies which led to research on cannabinoid-based mixtures. For NRC, he also served on national advisory committees supporting the standardization needs for the emerging cannabis industry to ensure quality and safety of cannabis supply. Prior to the NRC, Dr. Chapman spent 6 years working as a Senior Scientist for bioscience start-up companies in San Francisco, California. Dr. Chapman is also the Vice-President of the NHP Research Society and the recording secretary for the processing and handling subcommittee for ASTM D37.04 standards group on cannabis. Dr. Chapman is an active member of the Canada’s bioscience community serving on several boards and advisory boards. He holds a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of British Columbia, has published widely, holds several patents, and has presented at numerous scientific symposia.
Dr. Bill Cheliak (Panelist)
CEO, Panag Pharmaceuticals
Bill has over 20 years of business experience in a wide variety of biotechnology fields, including vaccines, human genetics, drug development, manufacturing and extensive interactions with the pharmaceutical industry. Over the past 15 years, Bill has been involved in business development in the biotechnology sector with both private and publicly traded companies. He has executed numerous technology deals with Pharma, academic institutions and hospitals as well as securing financing ($150M+) for various companies with many venture firms. Bill currently serves on the Board of Directors of a publicly traded company on the TSX. He has a PhD in Genetics.
Dr. Christian Lehmann (Panelist)
Clinical Researcher, Dalhousie (Anesthesia, Pain Management & Perioperative Medicine)
Dr. Christian Lehmann is Professor of Anesthesia, Pharmacology, Microbiology & Immunology and Physiology & Biophysics at Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS. He is Staff Anesthesiologist and Associate Medical Director of Research in the Department of Anesthesia, Pain Management and Perioperative Medicine, Nova Scotia Health Authority, Halifax. Dr. Lehmann has 25 years of experience in experimental and clinical inflammation research including studies on the mechanisms of pain. He is the author of morethan 150 original publications, 5 books, 13 book chapters, and almost 200 published abstracts. In 2009 he founded the RESIST (Research in the Endocannabinoid System in Inflammation, Sepsis and Trauma) group with Dr. Melanie Kelly (Pharmacology) and others at Dalhousie. He and his collaborators received funding for their research on the therapeutic modulation of the endogenous cannabinoid system and for related research projects from CIHR, NSERC, CFI, MITACS, NSHRF, and Innovacorp. Dr. Lehmann is co-founder of Panag Pharma Inc. – a Halifax-based company working on novel cannabinoid formulations for the treatment of pain and inflammation.
Focusing our Natural Products Market Potential
Atlantic Canada’s diverse and abundant resources offer tremendous economic opportunity in the natural products industry. Join us as we identify emerging market opportunities and partnerships with industry experts.
Dr. Beth Mason (Panelist)
CEO, Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy & the Environment
Cape Breton University
Dr. Mason came to the Verschuren Centre, Cape Breton, four years ago, to build the bio-products research program, after working with Saputo Dairy Products Canada for 11 years prior, as well as running her own by-products logistics business. Her background brings a mix of industry, research, government, and business approaches to problem solving in the Agri-food and marine industries, specifically by-product value extraction and production of functional ingredients for feed, plant, and food. The program activities range from bench through pilot bio-transformations of products as diverse as fish, shellfish, and poultry by-products, and aims to assist companies with product development, process optimization and commercialization in the marine, aquaculture, and agriculture sectors. As CEO of the VC for the last year, Dr. Mason and team have expanded the VC engagement in renewable energy, specifically thermal energy conversion, recovery, and storage. The VC is unique in its capacity to bring together large industry and community partners toward development and demonstrations of innovative clean tech solutions for renewable energy storage, carbon sequestration, bio-transformations, and aquaculture.
Tracey Allen (Panelist)
Vice President Finance, Nature’s Way of Canada
Tracey has 20 years of experience as a financial professional and business advisor leading organizations to successfully pursue their growth agendas. She is currently Vice President Finance at Nature’s Way Canada and has spent time in the heavy equipment and telecommunications industries.
Tracey holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Memorial University of Newfoundland where she was born and raised and is a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Nova Scotia. Outside of work she is passionate about youth sports and in particular keeping girls in sports. She is an active volunteer as a coach and manager and serves on the Board of the Harbour City Lakers ringette association.
Solutions for Health Innovation (Panel Session)
The value of health innovation is about more than just cutting costs, it’s about outcomes for patients, physicians and our health system. Join us to learn how a group of healthcare innovators are working to empower the region’s healthcare system to adopt new health innovations made in our own backyard and transform them into an economic driver.
Paul Bradley (Moderator)
President, MedTech Consulting Inc.
Former VP of Strategic Affairs, Johnson & Johnson
Paul Bradley is a healthcare industry executive with over 30 years experience in the Canadian medical device and pharmaceutical markets. He has held leadership roles in a wide range of functional areas at Johnson & Johnson including sales, marketing, strategic account management, human resources, and operations. As Vice President of Strategic Affairs Paul had leadership responsibility for health economics and market access, professional education, clinical and regulatory affairs, quality, health care compliance, and was a member of the Management Board. Paul is also a leader within the Canadian medical device industry, serving on the MEDEC Board from 2009 to 2016 holding various leadership roles over that time including Treasurer, Executive Team Member, and Board Chair for the final two years. Paul is currently a Board member and Treasurer at ventureLAB, York Region’s Regional Innovation Centre, and is a member of the Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee (OHTAC). Paul is President of MedTech Consulting where he works with small and medium sized companies in the area of business development.
Dr. Bob Abraham (Panelist)
President, Chief Executive Officer, Founder & Director, ABK Biomedical
Professor, Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Dalhousie University
Dr. Abraham has been a practicing clinician and Interventional Radiologist (IR) for over 20 years. Dr. Abraham graduated from Dalhousie University’s Medical School in 1987. After completing his Rotating Internship at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, he returned for specialty training in Diagnostic Imaging at Dalhousie University from 1988 to 1992. He subsequently completed subspecialty training in Interventional Radiology at the Royal Melbourne Hospital in Australia in 1993. He returned to Dalhousie University as Attending Staff and is Full Professor at the Medical School. Dr. Abraham has a track record of licensed catheter innovations, granted patents and is actively engaged in funded research projects with funding to date, totaling in excess of $4 million. Dr. Abraham’s primary clinical expertise and research interests are in bland embolization, Y-90 Radioembolization, Chemoembolization, Arterial and Venous Angioplasty / Intravascular Stenting and endovascular treatment of complex thoracic and abdominal aortic aneurysms (Fenestrated and Branched Stent Graft Deployment). Dr. Abraham is a recognized leader in Canada and recently completed his tenure as Chair of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada Examination in Diagnostic Radiology and as President of the Canadian Association of Interventional Radiologists (CIRA). Dr. Abraham was honored as a Fellow of the Society of Interventional Radiology (FSIR) in 2016 for his outstanding contributions and achievements in Interventional Radiology and he was recently profiled in Interventional News (https://interventionalnews.com/bob-abraham/).
Jocelyn Hiltz (Panelist)
Account Manager, Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) – Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) Program and Business Development Program (BDP)
Dr. Krista Jangaard (Panelist)
President & CEO, IWK Health Centre
Dr. Krista Jangaard is the IWK Health Centre’s President & CEO. Krista first joined the IWK in 1996 in the division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine. In 2008, she assumed the role of Medical Director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and in 2010 became the Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Division Head. In addition, Krista is an associate professor at Dalhousie University in the department of pediatrics and the department of obstetrics and gynecology.
Krista completed her medical training at Dalhousie University where she also later earned a Masters of Health Administration and was awarded the Glenn Moore Memorial Award and the Nova Scotia Association of Health Organizations Award for Academic Excellence. Krista is a mother of two, lives in Halifax with her husband and dog, and is an avid gardener.
The Tech Revolution Reshaping Health (Fireside Chat)
We are at the cusp of change in the way health services in Canada are delivered. Disruptive health technologies bring transformational improvements in the affordability, accessibility, quality and simplicity of health care solutions. Join us to hear from industry leaders how tools such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), robotics, Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) are revolutionizing and reshaping health.
Miriam Zitner (Moderator)
Vice President Halifax Innovation District
Miriam Zitner is leading the three-year master plan to develop and advance Halifax’s Innovation District, working in collaboration with the private sector, our universities and the community college, Nova Scotia’s MIT REAP team and Halifax’s start-up and innovation centres.
Miriam has 20 years experience working with Fortune 100 technology companies and start-ups, primarily out of Toronto and Vancouver, focused on photonics, biometrics and energy. Companies such as IBM (B2B), Intel (B2C and B2B, channel sales), Microsoft (B2C, some B2B), and MSN.CA. She has also worked with academic institutions and associations and understands the operating framework of collaborating with many constituents that share a desired outcome.
Allan Miranda (Presenting Speaker)
Head of JLABS @ Canada
As Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation, JLABS in Canada, Allan is responsible for external engagement, innovation sourcing, company onboarding, portfolio management, operational excellence, educational programming and P&L. He catalyzes and supports the translation of science and technology into valuable solutions for patients and consumers across the pharmaceutical, medical device, consumer and healthtech sectors.
Allan joined the JLABS team from Janssen Canada, where he has spent the last 12 years in positions of increasing responsibility in business development, marketing and market access. His most recent role was Therapeutic Lead Immunology and Primary Care where he was responsible for market access strategy for a complex product portfolio exceeding $1 billion. Allan started his career at PARTEQ Innovations, the technology transfer arm of Queen’s University at Kingston where he was responsible for technology assessment and new company start-up. He then moved to Paladin Labs, where he successfully completed numerous in-licensing transactions for specialty pharmaceutical products for the Canadian market. Allan subsequently worked in business development for two early stage biotechnology companies in Canada leading their business development and partnering initiatives prior to joining Janssen.
Allan received his Ph.D. in Neuropharmacology from Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario and his MBA from McGill University in Finance and Strategy.
Ryan Cameron (Panelist)
CEO, Electric Puppets
Ryan Cameron has been a serial innovator since 1997. In 2000, Ryan led a team to create the first interactive versions of the beloved Little Golden Books for Disney Interactive, and then became CTO of an international US based firm that delivered online education to fortune 100 corporate employees. Ryan was CTO of online educational companies for the next 10 years before starting his own innovativeonline educational company, and advised on international boards and organizations as well. Ryan created online educational products that won numerous awards and helped hundreds of thousands of fortune 500 employees learn important new skills in multi-year award winning online programs. Ryan joined Copernicus Studios in 2013 and led the interactive division to create one of the first speech recognition engines tuned to children’s voices to empower early literacy applications, and then founded Electric Puppets in 2016. Ryan is an avid rare book and antique collector and lives on an acreage in Chester, Nova Scotia.
Dr. Steven Beyea (Panelist)
Scientific Program Lead, Biomedical Translational Imaging Centre (BIOTIC)
Steven Beyea is the Scientific Program Lead for the Biomedical Translational Imaging Centre (BIOTIC), which is a research centre of both the IWK and QEII Health Centres. He is also a Professor of Diagnostic Radiology, Physics, Biomedical Engineering, and Health Sciences at Dalhousie University. His research focuses on the development of novel medical imaging technologies and their clinical/commercial translation. This work has attracted >$6M in research grants/awards as principal investigator since 2014. In particular he leads a number of large scale projects, in collaboration with industry partners such as GE Healthcare, which utilize Artificial Intelligence in the development of potentially disruptive technologies for improved health outcomes.
Chris Crowell (Panelist)
VP of Corporate Innovation, Volta
Chris is Volta’s Vice President of Corporate Innovation. He is responsible for helping corporate and public sector partners leverage the startup ecosystem to drive innovation in their own organizations through Volta’s Outpost Program. Prior to joining Volta, Chris served as the CMO for Mariner Partners. He also spent time working with OpenText in Waterloo leading the worldwide technology partners team and with Bell Canada in Toronto, focusing on innovation strategy and managing the consumer market operations P&L. Chris holds a degree in Mass Communications from Carleton University and a L.L.B and MBA from Dalhousie University where he was a past recipient of the Outstanding Young Alumnus for his work as founder of East Coast Connected and organizer of the Atlantic Business Summits.
Brian Thompson (Panelist)
CEO, Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation
Brian Thompson joined the Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation (DMRF) in September 2016 as its first CEO. The Foundation has grown in size and scope under Brian’s leadership building on its nearly forty-year history supporting medical research at Dalhousie’s Faculty of Medicine. Now with a team of thirteen, DMRF raises much needed funds for all areas of health research. Collaboration is key to the Foundation’s success as they partner very closely with Dalhousie University and other key health partners in the region. Brian is a native Montrealer, graduate of McGill University, and is fluently bilingual.