Growing New Jersey’s Biotech Industry

BioNJ’s 2012 Annual Dinner Meeting, Awards Program, and Networking Event is right around the corner, new State policy initiatives have recently been enacted or introduced that support our industry, and BioNJ will be unveiling new programs in 2012 to better serve our Members. We look forward to an exciting year.

2012 Annual Meeting

Governor Chris Christie

Governor Chris Christie

With less than a week to go and more than 600 registrants, we’re set to break all attendance records, but there’s still time to make your plans to attend our 2012 Annual Meeting – BioNJ’s 19th – which begins at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 2, at the East Brunswick Hilton in East Brunswick, NJ. If you have not yet done so, please click here to register.

With Governor Christie’s recent enactment of the GrowNJ program, it is timelier than ever to hear from him as part of the Annual Meeting. We are honored that the Governor is taking time from his demanding schedule to share his thoughts on the biotech industry.

Paul G. Thomas

Paul G. Thomas

We are also delighted to honor Paul Thomas, Founder and CEO of Roka Bioscience, with the Dr. Sol J. Barer Award for Vision, Innovation, and Leadership. Paul’s leadership, insight, and commitment to advancing biotech and creating jobs in New Jersey truly sets him apart.

James C. Greenwood

James C. Greenwood

In addition, Jim Greenwood, President and CEO of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), returns for the fourth consecutive year to provide his perspective on events in Washington, DC, and the upcoming 2012 elections and their potential impact on our industry. If you want to hear an insider’s perspective on what’s going on in Washington and how it relates to biotech – Jim’s advice is not to be missed.

However, the most important element of the Annual Meeting, and the resounding reason why you need to be there – is that this event provides us with an opportunity to bring our community together – to network, to share our thoughts, and to celebrate the upcoming year for our industry. It is a time to foster connections that will grow our industry in the years ahead. I truly hope you can join us.

A Thank You for Service

Speaking of connections, there is no stronger support system for BioNJ than our Board of Trustees. This group of individuals serves as our guidepost – providing their vast and diverse expertise to guide your Association to help us best represent our Members and our community.

That is why I am honored to thank two members of our Board of Trustees who are wrapping up their terms – Marvin Miller and James Sapirstein, RPh, MBA – for their dedicated service to BioNJ over the years. During his time on the Board, Marv has tapped into his own network to ensure that we have strong representation on our Board, and I especially thank him for his role in our Nominating Committee. James has been devoted in offering his time and talent to ensure that we are getting the biotech message out in the political arena. I thank him for always being our “go-to” person for conveying a compelling message to legislators at the State and federal levels.

I would also like to thank Todd Brady, Principal at Domain Associates, for his role as a Founder of the Life Sciences Seed Syndicate (LSSS) program and Venture Capital Advisor to the Board. Todd has given tirelessly of his time and energy to get this program off the ground and ensure its success.

I wholeheartedly thank each of these individuals for their service to BioNJ and I would also like to recognize each and every one of our volunteers over the past year for the generosity with your time and talent. Your service is what truly makes this a biotech community, not just an industry.

What’s Ahead in 2012

There is a lot happening in New Jersey and here at BioNJ in 2012, including new economic development programs and other policy initiatives as well as other programs that we are developing for our Members.

As I mentioned earlier, Governor Christie has enacted GrowNJ, providing at least $200 million in incentives to create and retain jobs. Although this program does not have a specific focus on biotech, it lays the foundation for further support and growth for our industry. You can read more about the program in the Industry News and Notes section.

In addition, newly sworn-in Assemblyman Troy Singleton of Palymra has introduced legislation to provide a corporate business tax credit and gross income tax credit for specific biotech investments. We thank Assemblyman Singleton for his early outreach to BioNJ and support of the industry, and we will keep our Members informed as this legislation moves along.

Here at BioNJ, we will be introducing two new programs in 2012, including a Human Resources Summit and a Personalized Medicine Summit. We have also formed a Purchasing Committee to review all of our Member service programs, honing in on our current offerings and recommending additional offerings to better serve our Members. The year ahead will be a year of growth and a year of connections for our biotech community, and I thank you for being part of this effort and allowing us to serve you. It is an honor and a pleasure.

Looking forward to seeing you at the Annual Meeting on February 2.

Yours in BioNJ,


Debbie Hart


In Tribute to Assembly Republican Leader Alex DeCroce

Alex DeCroceWe were deeply saddened to learn of the passing on January 9 of Assembly Republican Leader Alex DeCroce.

A member of the Assembly since 1989, Assemblyman DeCroce (R-26) was a highly respected, visionary leader who was able to work with both Republicans and Democrats on issues that helped to advance the well-being of all of New Jersey’s citizens.

Assemblyman DeCroce was a strong supporter of the biotechnology industry in New Jersey since the early days of BioNJ, and it was our pleasure and honor to work with such a great man.

On behalf of New Jersey’s biotechnology community, we offer our deepest sympathies to Assemblyman DeCroce’s family and his many friends in Trenton and throughout the State. He truly will be missed.