Uncovering Hidden Gems in the Life Sciences & Healthcare Nonprofit Ecosystem

Sep 13, 2018

By Chris Lindgren, Director of Programming at MassBio

I recently conducted ad-hoc research for an upcoming nonprofit forum event and identified over 200 Massachusetts nonprofits in the life sciences and healthcare space (Table 1. and 2.). I organized them into 12 different categories. Although this list is not assumed to be comprehensive, it provides a good idea of the makeup of the nonprofits within the Mass Biotech community.

Table 1. MassBio characterized the nonprofits into 12 key categories

Because of our forum events and through deeper relationships with our Co-Chairs and members, I have become aware of the diversity of value generated by these nonprofits including how they:

  • Provide low or no-cost scientific resources, tools and facilities both locally and globally
  • Support patients, the disabled and elderly through innovative healthcare programs
  • Build a skilled science and technology workforce and culture now and for the future
  • Advance new medicines and cures through world class hospitals, clinicians and research institutions
  • Raise money for research, advocate for and create support networks for patients and their families
  • Help build more successful, patient-driven academic, nonprofit and industry collaborations
  • Grow the industry through economic incentives and support for industry and patient-centric legislation

At MassBio our mission is to advance Massachusetts’ leadership in the life sciences to grow the industry, add value to the healthcare system and improve patient lives. To that end our Nonprofit Forum Working Group Co-Chairs devised a way to help uncover some of the hidden gems in our life sciences and healthcare nonprofit ecosystem. The 2018 Petri Dish Nonprofit Pitch Challenge has a few goals in mind:

1). Build greater visibility of the role and value of non-profit organizations in fueling our ecosystem
2). Recognize six non-profits (finalists) that are demonstrating success at fulfilling their mission and innovating in the life sciences and healthcare space
3). Coach other small and emerging non-profits to improve their value propositions and pitches
4). Facilitate important growth connections with philanthropists, partners, volunteers, target audiences

The Petri Dish Nonprofit Pitch Challenge will be held on November 8th from 4:00pm to 6:00pm at MassBio in Cambridge. The event will include a pre-event with “elevator pitch” coaching for all eligible nonprofit applicants. The pitch contest will feature 6 pitch finalists who will present their nonprofit’s raison d’être and unique value proposition to a panel of judges. The finalist’s pitches will be followed by a networking reception for all while the judges are making their decisions. Winners will be announced and prizes awarded to the 1st place winner and two runners-up. For full details including the eligibility / application form visit our forum description.

We would greatly appreciate it if you would spread the word about our contest to your favorite life sciences or healthcare nonprofits and please join us for the event. Also, if you would like to contribute additional names to our MA nonprofit list, please send information (nonprofit name, website, contact e-mail) to Chris Lindgren. We’ll keep the most up-to-date MA nonprofit list updated on this blog. A hearty thanks to our Co-Chairs for putting together a great event and helping to review and compile our MA nonprofit list. And, thanks to all of you out there who support nonprofit organizations.

Table 2. The MassBio Life Sciences and Healthcare Nonprofit List and Its Contributing Sources. Click on thumbnail image to download our resource.

MassBio NonProfit Working Group Co-Chairs:

Co-Chairs drive the content for our forum events and recruit speakers and moderators.

Sonal Das, PhD, Senior Manager, Corporate Development and Strategy, Biogen

Qi-Ying Hu, PhD, Director of Drug Delivery, Decibel Therapeutics

Joanne Kamens, PhD, Executive Director, Addgene

Milka Kostic, PhD, Program Director, Chemical Biology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Ann Sluder, PhD, Associate Director, Sr. Research Project Manager, Vaccine & Immunotherapy Center, Massachusetts, General Hospital

Lori Ryan, RN, MS, Chair Board of Directors, Neurofibromatosis Northeast

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