The editors at Xconomy have been working hard the last few weeks putting together the program for the Xconomy Awards Gala. We are really excited to announce the two winners of the Xconomy Lifetime Achievement Award.
Lita Nelsen, MIT (retired)
Lita Nelsen (pictured left) played a pivotal role in transforming Kendall Square and Boston into the hotbed of tech and biotech it is today. For more than 20 years until her recent retirement, she headed up MIT’s tech transfer office, helping to broker countless licensing deals between MIT and companies, and spinning out many startups to commercialize MIT research in life sciences and other areas. She and her team became national leaders in university technology transfer and commercialization, showing how universities are crucial sources of entrepreneurship and innovation.
George Whitesides, Harvard University
Name any hot area of research in chemistry and materials science, and chances are you’ll find George Whitesides (pictured right) and his lab at Harvard at the forefront: microfluidics, nanotechnology, soft robotics, to name a few. One of the country’s most cited chemists, Whitesides co-founded Genzyme, along with about a dozen other companies. He’s mentored hundreds of students and postdocs, served on numerous government committees advising on technology and innovation policy, and has been vocal about the need for chemists and scientists to work on problems of practical importance. He’s been a Harvard professor since 1982.
The MCs for the evening will be:
Susan Windham-Bannister, Biomedical Growth Strategies
Rob Perez, Life Science Cares
We will also take a moment to pay tribute to Henri Termeer, who passed away earlier this year. The longtime CEO of Genzyme was a biotech giant in Boston and beyond who mentored and influenced many people and companies. We have invited one of those people, Alison Lawton, a former Genzyme executive and now COO of Aura Biosciences, to say a few words about Henri’s impact on the community and to lead us all in a toast.
You can see more about the Awards here and the list of finalists here. We’re looking forward to seeing you on September 26, when Nelsen, Whitesides and the rest of the winners will be presented with their awards.