Network of leaders driving ‘Roadmap’ expands in ’05

January 11, 2006

By hammersmith

The roster of leading Arizona scientists, economic developers, policy leaders, and others working to implement Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap—the state’s long-term plan to achieve prominence in the biosciences—expanded broadly in 2005.

Overall, nearly 250 officials statewide serve on 16 committees to advance collaborative plans in scientific disciplines and business-related areas key to the growth of the industry.

In order to incorporate additional key players from around the state, the Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap Steering Committee expanded from about 40 members to more than 60 in 2005.

In addition, a broad strategic framework known as the “virtual coalition” was launched to pull sectors with an interest in the biosciences into more structured relationships. The coalition brings together Roadmap officials; bioscience trade associations (the Arizona BioIndustry Association and the Bioindustry Organization of Southern Arizona); and regional business leadership groups (Greater Phoenix Leadership, Southern Arizona Leadership Council, and Flagstaff 40).

The coalition is expected to greatly augment Arizona’s ability to carry out the Roadmap.

“The success of the Roadmap hinges upon the ability of diverse organizations to come together and work in unison toward a common goal,” said Saundra Johnson, vice president for strategic development and communications at the Flinn Foundation, which commissions and coordinates the Roadmap. “Arizona has performed exceedingly well in this regard, and 2005 marked a year of impressive progress in enlisting the support of new individuals and organizations that will play a crucial role.”

Martin Shultz, vice president of government affairs for Pinnacle West Capital Corporation, was appointed chair of the Steering Committee that oversees the implementation of the Roadmap. Shultz, a veteran in Arizona corporate public affairs, business policy development, government affairs, and public administration, took over for outgoing chair Skip Rimsza, former Phoenix mayor.

The organizational structure overseen by the Steering Committee has also undergone significant changes. Three new committees were added to address non-scientific areas identified as critical in the Roadmap: Communications and Public Affairs, Investment and Capital Formation, and Workforce and Education.

The Communications and Public Affairs Committee was created in response to a statewide consensus that Arizona needs unified messages for the biosciences. The committee meets once a month, and includes two subcommittees: Marketing and Public Relations, and Federal and State Relations.

The Workforce and Education Committee addresses the need for improved math and science education programs and a better-trained bioscience workforce.

The purpose of the Investment and Capital Formation Committee is to understand and influence the development of investment and capital needs, including pre-seed/seed funds, prototype funds, and trends in venture-capital investments in Arizona.

In addition, four committees and workgroups were added to advance the Roadmap’s Translational Research Project, which aims at creating an Arizona model for getting lab discoveries to the marketplace more efficiently and effectively. Final recommendations for this project are expected in mid-2006.

These committees join the four “platform” committees of statewide scientists that are furthering collaborative strategies to advance Arizona core-competencies in the biosciences: bioengineering, cancer research, neurosciences, and bioimaging.

For more information:

Graphic: Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap Organizational Structure
(PDF–Requires free Adobe Reader).

Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap

Roadmap Committees