• Minnesota

    Maura Donovan named Chief Technology Officer for Minnesota Partnership’s Decade of Discovery

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — Maura Donovan, Ph.D., has been named Chief Technology Officer for the Decade of Discovery (the Decade), the collaboration created and led by the Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics, dedicated to preventing, optimally treating and ultimately curing Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

In her role, Dr. Donovan will help advance the Decade through her extensive background in science and the medical technology industry. She will implement the initiative's strategic plan, as well as establish a scientific advisory board and develop corporate partnerships for tracked research. Dr. Donavan will work closely with program directors and project teams to create milestones for their work and provide guidance on scientific and corporate alliances.

"It's an honor to be the newest member of the Decade team and to play a role in this unique research partnership between the University of Minnesota and Mayo Clinic," says Dr. Donovan. "I am eager to leverage my experience and, working with the team, to make a difference in the fight against diabetes."

Most recently Dr. Donovan served as vice president, Therapy R&D, for Medtronic Corporate Ventures and New Therapies. She spent more than 20 years with Medtronic and has 15 years of leadership experience in research and development in the biotechnology, drug delivery and medical device sectors. She has authored numerous medical publications, issued more than a dozen patents and received accolades, including the Bakken Award, Medtronic's highest technical award for significant contributions to the corporation, the biomedical industry, customers and patients.

Dr. Donovan was a postdoctoral fellow in biochemistry at the University of Minnesota, holds a Ph.D. in pharmacology from the University of Washington and a B.A. in chemistry and Russian from Macalester College. She has served as interim executive director of the Medical Device Innovation Consortium, is currently on the board of directors of LifeScience Alley and is a trustee of Macalester College.

"Maura personifies our commitment to combine and direct the best of industry and academia toward a transformative goal in diabetes," says David Etzwiler, Decade executive director. "Minnesota is well-positioned to rightfully claim its place as the diabetes laboratory for the world, and Maura is the person we needed to help make that happen."

Dr. Donovan joins Etzwiler and program leaders Betsy Seaquist, M.D., president-elect of the American Diabetes Association and endocrinologist at the University of Minnesota; and Steve Smith, M.D., endocrinologist at Mayo Clinic.

Vance Opperman, president and CEO of Key Investment, Inc., and CEO and general counsel of MSP Communications, serves as co-chair of the Decade Oversight Committee, along with former Minnesota State Supreme Court Chief Justice Kathleen Blatz. Opperman said, "Maura is the right person for the job because she can successfully bridge the scientific and business worlds, both of which play a critical role in this initiative. We're thrilled to be working with her as we join together in the fight against this devastating disease."

For more information, visit Decade of Discovery.

About the Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics

The Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics, formed in 2003, is a unique collaborative venture among the Mayo Clinic, University of Minnesota and State of Minnesota, with the goal of positioning Minnesota as a world leader in biotechnology and biomedical research that improves health and saves lives while offering economic advantages to the state.