Save the Date for Beer & Biotech

Beer & Biotech is an ecosystem-building series that will bring together investors, physicians, academics, inventors, startups, and state and regional leaders who are influential in the biotechnology industry. Each event in the year-long series will feature a local, regional, or national speaker and include plenty of time for networking and beverages at the host brewery. 

The Future of Biotech in the Region

John Newby, Chief Executive Officer of Virginia Bio, will share his vision for the future of biotechnology and biotech commercialization in the region. With new wet and dry labs on the horizon and life sciences research at an all-time high, there’s a lot of forward motion coming from this part of the Commonwealth. 

Newby has been in his role at Virginia Bio since 2019 and is tasked with fostering partnerships with and between the Commonwealth’s greater biotechnology and healthcare industries to find innovative solutions to improve lives. He helps the association’s 270+ members by facilitating access to capital, connecting industry to academia, and providing educational and professional development event programming and collaborates with federal, state and local partners to grow Virginia’s $8 billion life science industry.

The goal of Beer & Biotech is to help regional efforts to develop biotech hubs and coincides with the Virginia BIO annual THRiVE conference at the Hotel Roanoke on April 28 (save the date). 

Here’s the best part: Each event is free to attend. Entrepreneurs and students in the biotech space can find and connect with mentors. Established biotech and life sciences firms can share current projects and information. 

“Beer & Biotech brings together all the work regional partners are doing behind the scenes into an accessible format that showcases what’s happening with biotech commercialization as well as provides a great opportunity to meet peers and potential mentors,” said Erin Burcham, President of Verge and Executive Director of RBTC. 

The series is a partnership between Virginia BioVerge and RBTC, Carilion ClinicFralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTCCity of RoanokeVirginia Western Community College, and the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center

Beer & Biotech Schedule

4:30-6:30 p.m.

  • March 16
  • April 20
  • May 19
  • June 15
  • July 20
  • August 17
  • Sept. 21
  • Oct. 19
  • Nov. 16
About the Speaker

John Newby is the CEO at Virginia Bio, the statewide non-profit trade association for the life science industry. Approximately 300 entities spanning biopharmaceuticals, medical device, med tech, diagnostics, digital health, bioinformatics, agriculture and industrial bio and related fields are based in Virginia, mainly clustered around research universities and medical institutions. Virginia Bio is the sole state affiliate and works closely with key national industry organizations Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), AdvaMed, Medical Device Manufacturers Association (MDMA), Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PhRMA) and We Work for Health.

Newby was formerly the Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Veterans Services (VDVS), where he led an 850-member Agency located across 50 Virginia locations, delivering employment, education, benefits, behavioral health and long term health care services to Virginia’s Reservists, Guardsmen, transitioning service members and 725,000 veterans. Prior to leading VDVS Newby practiced corporate, intellectual property and Hatch-Waxman biopharmaceutical law at international law firms in Richmond and Washington DC, and at a multinational company. Newby previously commanded an Air Force special operations unit supporting the U.S. Army’s 3rd and 7th Special Forces Groups (Airborne), and served in Iraq as an aviator aboard the Boeing B-1B Lancer strategic bomber. Newby received a B.S. from the United States Air Force Academy, with Military Distinction, and his J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law.

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