Passport to Global Health Celebration
|Dean Allen, SBRI Board of Trustees|
A couple of nights ago, Ken and I were guests of Dick & Betty Hedreen at the Seattle BioMed Seventh Annual Passport to Global Health Celebration. Their daughter, Jane Hedreen, who is on the Seattle BioMed Board of Trustees was the chairman of the event. Also seated with us were Mimi & Bill Gates Sr., Lisa & Charles Simonyi, Susan Hutchison plus one of the talented Seattle BioMed PhD scientists.
Founded in 1976 by President and Founder, Ken Stuart, Ph.D., Seattle Biomedical Research Institute is devoted solely to global infectious disease research and works to tackle the world's deadliest diseases by developing new diagnostics, drugs and vaccines. Board member, Dean Allen, shared some of the highlights of 35 years of discovery and introduced a video including snippets throughout the years.
Tachi Yamada receives Advancing Global Health Award The "Advancing Global Health Award" was presented to Tachi Yamada, M.D., president of the Global Health Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He talked about how important the Gates Foundation and he have found encouragement of innovation to be in helping address pressing global health problems. He is credited with encouraging more high-risk, high-reward projects with long-term benefits and has more than tripled the Gates Foundation's global health grant portfolio.
I was especially taken with one thing he said. He talked about the importance of valuing not only "evolutionary innovation" but placing the big bets on "revolutionary innovation"; meaning those ideas that are a little "crazy" and have not gone through a peer review, that would likely automatically diminish them and find reasons why they won't work. The Gates Foundation has been giving out $100k grants for those "revolutionary innovation" ideas in global health that can be followed by another $1 million grant to help execute the innovation. With the collaboration of SBRI, the Gates Foundation, and other funding partners, what exciting breakthroughs in global health and reduction of infectious diseases can we hope to see in the next few years!?