Northwestern Events Calendar


FoundHer Series | Tales from the Entrepreneurial Trenches: Insights & Advice from Women Faculty Founders

When: Friday, March 10, 2023
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CT

Where: Online

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Sonia Kim   (847) 467-0446

Group: Innovation and New Ventures Office

Category: Lectures & Meetings


Northwestern University's Querrey InQbation Lab is hosting the FoundHer Series to amplify women academic innovators & entrepreneurs.

During this moderated panel discussion, Shana Kelley, PhD (Professor, Northwestern) and Yvonne Chen, PhD (Associate Professor, UCLA) will share their experiences spinning out companies from their university research. The panelists will share lessons learned during their entrepreneurial journeys and advice to first-time founders. The panel will be moderated by Marta New, PhD, MBA (CEO, Radyus Research).

While the FoundHer Series is focused on supporting women innovators, all are welcome to register.

Please register in advance.


Shana Kelley is the Neena B. Schwartz Professor at Northwestern in the Departments of Chemistry, Biomedical Engineering, and Biochemistry & Molecular Genetics. The Kelley research group works in a variety of areas spanning bio analytical technology development and has pioneered new methods for tracking molecular and cellular analytes with unprecedented sensitivity. Dr. Kelley’s work has been recognized with the ACS Inorganic Nanoscience Award, the ACS Arthur Doolittle Award, the Pittsburgh Conference Achievement Award, the Steacie Prize, an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar award, a NSF CAREER Award, a Dreyfus New Faculty Award, and she was also named a “Top 100 Innovator” by MIT’s Technology Review. Kelley is also a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, and the American Institute of Biological and Medical Engineering. Kelley is an inventor on over 50 patents issued worldwide and a successful entrepreneur. She is a founder of four molecular diagnostics companies, GeneOhm Sciences (acquired by Becton Dickinson in 2005), Xagenic Inc. (acquired by General Atomics in 2017), CTRL Therapeutics (founded in 2019) and Arma Biosciences (founded in 2021). Kelley serves as a Board Director for the Fight Against Cancer Innovation Trust (FACIT) and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. She is an Associate Editor for ACS Sensors, and an Editorial Advisory Board Member for the Journal of the American Chemical Society, Nano Letters, and ACS Nano. Kelley has leadership experience as a co-Director of Medicine by Design, a $114M multidisciplinary, multi-institutional initiative focused on engineering approaches to regenerative medicine, and was a member of the leadership team for the Nanomedicine Innovation Network, a government-funded effort to unite nanotechnology-focused researchers across Canada. She was also the founder and Director of PRiME, which was launched at the University of Toronto to unite the life sciences, engineering and clinical communities.

Yvonne Chen is an Associate Professor of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is also a faculty, by courtesy, in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Yvonne is the co-director of the Tumor Immunology program in the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCLA, and a member researcher of the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy. The Chen Laboratory applies synthetic biology and biomolecular engineering techniques to the development of novel mammalian-cell systems for clinical use, and Dr. Chen led the first investigator-initiated clinical trial on CAR-T cell therapy at UCLA. The Chen Lab’s work on engineering next-generation T-cell therapies for cancer has been recognized by the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award, the NSF CAREER Award, the Hellman Fellowship, the ACGT Young Investigator Award in Cell and Gene Therapy for Cancer, the Mark Foundation Emerging Leader Award, and the Cancer Research Institute Lloyd J. Old STAR Award. Prior to joining UCLA in 2013, Yvonne was a Junior Fellow in the Harvard Society of Fellows. She received postdoctoral training at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute, and in the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School. Yvonne received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University and her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology.

Marta New is the founding CEO of Radyus Research, a CRO based in Atlanta, GA. Radyus is focused on all aspects of preclinical therapeutics development, from strategic planning to experimental execution and regulatory filings. Before starting Radyus, Marta was the co-founding Partner at Agent Capital, a life sciences-focused venture capital firm based in Cambridge, MA. While at Agent, Marta led multiple venture capital investments in oncology, immunology and rare disease areas including Orchard Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ORTX), Precision Biosciences (NASDAQ:DITL), Pliant Therapeutics and Verge Genomics, among others. Prior to Agent Capital, Marta was a Principal investor at Baxalta Ventures, the corporate venture capital arm of Baxalta in Cambridge MA, where she led multiple venture capital investments and served as a board observer for Gadeta BV (acquired by Kite/Gilead, 2018), Syntimmune (acq. by Alexion, 2018), and Vitesse Biologics (early stage accelerator funded by Baxalta, Mayo Clinic and Velocity Pharmaceutical Development). Marta started her investment career at Baxter Ventures, the corporate venture capital arm of Baxter in Chicago, IL, transitioning from the Global Renal Marketing franchise, where she was the commercial lead for multiple new products for the Chinese and European markets. She joined Baxter from Northwestern University’s Innovation and New Ventures Office where she was responsible for licensing negotiations, commercial assessment of patents, and industry alliance management. Marta received her PhD from the University of Illinois at Chicago in microbiology and immunology and completed her post-doctoral training at Northwestern University. She also received an MBA from Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management in Chicago, IL.

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