• Congressman Erik Paulsen
• Shaye Mandle, Vice President of Government Relations at LifeScience Alley
• Ross DeVol, Chief Research Officer at the Milken Institute
• Jeff Trewhitt, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)
• Dr. Joy Frestedt, President of Frestedt, Inc. and MCRA partner
The educational forum was hosted by the Freedom Foundation of Minnesota,
LifeScience Alley, the Minnesota Clinical Research Alliance (MCRA) and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA).
This event was unique in its utilization of several experts within specific divisions to discuss a topic’s many aspects, with Rep. Paulsen speaking to the federal-policy view,
Dr. Frestedt and Shaye Mandle covering the state aspect, Trewhitt speaking from a communications standpoint, and Ross DeVol providing his public-policy expertise. This combination created a successful and powerful event.
The audience of over 100 state elected officials and candidates for office, business leaders and healthcare advocates received an overview of Minnesota’s biomedical industries from Shaye Mandle with LifeScience Alley.
Congressman Paulsen discussed his role in working to repeal the Medical Device Tax, describing how the tax and other regulations can harm the industry by stifling innovation and jobs.
Ross DeVol of the Milken Institute presented his recent study titled “The Global Biomedical Industry: Preserving U.S. Leadership.”
The final speakers for the night formed a panel focused on current clinical research being conducted in Minnesota and its positive impact on local economies as well as patient health.
Jeff Trewhitt, author of “Research in Your Backyard: Developing Cures, Creating Jobs,” highlighted current research in the state.
Dr. Joy Frestedt, who is a MCRA partner, explained that MCRA is a unique partnership between a dozen researchers and consultants with the goal of attracting more clinical trials to Minnesota.
Audience members were engaged throughout the event asking questions of each of the speakers and often questions had to be limited in order to keep the program moving on time. Many attendees stayed to network and praised the quality of the speakers and the range of topics covered.
Prior to the event, Trewhitt met with several media outlets including the St. Cloud Times, Duluth News Tribune, Twin Cities Business Journal, MedFAX and Star Tribune. He also held a call with the editorial board of the Pioneer Press.