The Spirit of Medical Alley is exemplified by individuals or organizations that provide an extraordinary commitment of time, talents or treasure that furthers the excellence and honors the history of Minnesota’s health technology community.
The Medical Alley Association recognizes these selfless acts and great investments that sustain and advance our unique and celebrated ecosystem. These are the individuals and organizations who always say “Yes, I will,” “Of course we can,” or “Whatever the community needs . . .” We honor these committed servants who always answer the call to give just a little bit more to move us all forward.
Last night at the 2016 Medical Alley Association Annual Meeting, we honored four Spirit of the Alley award winners:
MN House Representative Sarah Anderson. Sarah has been a strong champion for our industries at the State Capitol. As an advocate for research, entrepreneurship, private business growth and the critical nature of keeping Minnesota at the forefront of innovation, Sarah has led multiple efforts to improve MN’s environment for new therapies. Sarah continues to work with us to strengthen the R&D tax credit package, expand the Angel Investment Tax Credit and pursue policy changes to keep Medical Alley growing.
Mac McKeen’s picture might be next to the Wikipedia definition of “Spirit of the Alley.” He is a long-time volunteer, connector and go-to resource for anyone in industry. Mac is the kind of member every association wants and Minnesota’s Medical Alley community is better off for having him. His devotion to this organization is second-to-none. If you haven’t yet met Mac, keep your eyes peeled at any number of our events – it’s a rare occurrence in the Alley when Mac is not there.
Jim Smith. Jim is an entrepreneur, engineer and true believer in the value of giving back. Jim shows his enduring spirit for Minnesota’s Medical Alley every day. He has spent the last few years providing leadership to the R&D Educational Group. Absent Jim, this tight-knit, highly-educated technical group would not exist today.
PROJECT STEALTH. When Dr. Saltzman’s novel salmonella cancer research had reached its funding limits, a mutual friend introduced him to the leadership team at StoneArch. In a fully pro bono effort, an out-of-the box crowdfunding campaign called PROJECT STEALTH was born. The project raised nearly $460,000 which provided Dr. Saltzman’s lab the means to complete the next round of research needed to apply for federal funding. At least 90% of the PROJECT STEALTH monies were raised right here in the Medical Alley region. Special things are happening in this very special place.
Champion of the Alley
The Medical Alley Association honored Doug Kohrs as the Champion of the Alley award winner. Doug has spent his entire career starting and leading companies in Medical Alley, including Spine Tech, American Medical Systems, Tornier, and now Responsive Orthopedics. Doug has served on the board of directors of more than 20 organizations – public, private and non-profits. Doug also became a non-profit executive, having created the Foundation for Essential Needs, which continues to grow under his leadership.