Bringing innovation to life once more, East Bay EDA hosted the fourth Meet the Innovators event on August 17th. The inviting setting of Bonneville Labs welcomed a diverse and enthusiastic group of attendees. The event series has been dedicated to showcasing pioneering organizations in the East Bay and celebrating the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit of the region. This event directed its focus towards leaders who shared their captivating stories in the realm of biotech and biomedical innovation, with a special spotlight on Hayward and its surrounding areas.

Setting the tone, the Honorable Mark Salinas, Mayor, City of Hayward, took the stage with his opening remarks. His words resonated with praise for Hayward’s flourishing landscape, underlining the unique presence of a comprehensive educational ecosystem encompassing their school district, community college, state university, and a vibrant job market. Additional commentary flowed from Kinkead Reiling, the Founder of Bonneville Labs, who radiated excitement for the blossoming community of talented individuals and enterprises that have found their home within Bonneville Labs’ new location in Hayward.

Attendees then heard from panelists including Faraz Ali, MBA – CEO, Tenaya Therapeutics Inc., Becca Levin, PhD – Head of Corporate Strategy, Eikon Therapeutics, Inc., Samuel Mazin, PhD – Founder and Chief Technology Officer, RefleXion and Dr. Renee Saville – Director of Technology Development and Innovation, ATUM. Kelly Johnson, Talent Outreach Program Manager, Berkeley Lab and Board Chair, Alameda County Workforce Development Board, served as the evening’s moderator.

Through engaging dialogue, Samuel Mazin offered an intimate peek into RefleXion’s journey, underscoring their mission to expand options for stage four cancer patients through advanced technology. Notably, he revealed treating their very first patient on the very day of the Meet the Innovators event – a monumental achievement!

Faraz Ali delved into the impactful initiatives of Tenaya Therapeutics Inc. in supporting patients battling heart disease. Their unwavering commitment to addressing an unmet medical need struck a chord with the audience, and their vigorous pursuit of innovative strategies including gene therapy, editing, and regeneration was prominently highlighted.

Becca Levin, in her turn, shed light on Eikon Therapeutics, Inc.’s focus on hardware engineering, emphasized by their incorporation of microscopy technology. Their experienced leadership not only propels their own journey but also advances technological progress across other enterprises within Hayward.

The Meet the Innovators event series is part of East Bay EDA’s efforts to tell positive stories about the East Bay and showcase the region’s innovation and creativity. The series included a total of four events leading up to East Bay EDA’s  signature event, EAST BAY NOW, taking place on Thursday, September 14th. This exclusive evening is dedicated to celebrating past, present, and future innovation across the East Bay region. Register here!