The Roundup – April 18, 2024

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April 18, 2024
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Welcome Whiting-Turner, Supporting Sponsor and MemberWhiting-Turner provides construction management, general contracting, design-build and integrated project delivery services on projects small and large for a diverse group of customers, including all aspects of the science and technology sector. Since 1909, the firm has been guided by the principles of integrity, excellence and an unwavering dedication to customer delight. They constantly strive to exceed each client’s expectations through innovation, collaboration and best practices.

With a long history of building science and technology facilities in the Northeast and across the country, their expertise spans across many fields in the industry, including laboratories, vivarium, nanotechnology and pharmaceutical. They know how to manage the challenges and intricacies that come with building complex science and technology facilities. Whiting-Turner’s professionals understand the operational needs of the researchers, and their design phase input and construction phase control promotes their satisfaction.

To learn more about Whiting-Turner and their expertise building science and technology facilities, click here. For details on their projects in the Northeast, click here.

An Interview with Jacqueline Heard, Ph.D., MBA
CEO and Founder, Enko Chem, Inc. 

Jacqueline Heard is a distinguished leader in the agricultural industry and the driving force behind Enko Chem, Inc, based in Mystic, Connecticut. As a former venture partner at Anterra Capital and a leader in global R&D at Monsanto, Heard’s expertise spans both scientific research and business strategy. She has dedicated her career to identifying and commercializing innovative solutions in agriculture. Now, as the CEO and Co-Founder of Enko Chem, Inc., Heard continues to pave the way for sustainable crop protection solutions, leveraging her extensive experience and passion for agricultural innovation.

Can you share with us the inspiration behind founding Enko Chem, Inc. and how your background in agriculture and venture capital influenced this decision?

My career in agriculture has centered around identifying and commercializing new technology in a variety of roles. Above all else, I’m passionate about the need for agricultural sustainability and saw enormous potential for Enko in my role at Anterra Capital. The platform truly inspired me!

Spearheading the launch of Enko in 2017 has allowed me to be at the forefront of work to design safe and sustainable solutions to agricultural problems, from pest resistance to new diseases. I see limitless potential for the future of safe chemical solutions when applying proven drug discovery and development approaches from pharma to agriculture.

In light of Earth Day, could you discuss Enko’s commitment to sustainability and its efforts to minimize the environmental impact of crop production and global agriculture?

We are at the beginning of the next era of safer, more sustainable chemicals for the agriculture industry. Enko is discovering and developing crop health products that are not only safe for the surrounding environment, but also help farmers combat weed, insect, and disease problems while using less product, less often.

One of our pipeline product candidates is a prime example as initial testing has shown an enormous leap in terms of effectiveness. Once fully commercialized, farmers will potentially be able to reduce chemical applications nearly 90% in important cropping systems across millions of acres globally.

The time for environmental stewardship is now – the crop protection market must make major shifts in its development approach. Enko’s target-based approach has generated a product pipeline of novel and diverse molecules in half the time and with fewer resources than legacy R&D methods. Enko’s products will reduce the environmental impact of crop protection products and improve agriculture’s sustainability over time.

Your bio mentions the importance of listening to farmers and translating their experiences into practical innovations. Could you elaborate on how Enko…

Read the full interview
This week the focus is on encompassing all “life sciences” – to be the voice of the industry in its broadest terms. We announced Medtronic joining our board, a major player in the state for medtech. Another huge area of growth is in AI, from a policy perspective as well as in membership, welcoming new member Epistemic AI. We are cohosting the May 16th AI in Healthcare event with the Connecticut Health Council. I also get incredibly excited when companies choose CT as their home, and the news of Regeneron Ventures starting in Greenwich made my day.
I’m thrilled to have our second interview series with Jacqueline Heard this week. We were absolutely blown away by Enko’s campus and how they are revolutionizing the use of AI for crop health and sustainability.

When I think of growth or the month of May, the Yale Innovation Summit is top of mind. It remains the pinnacle meeting for life sciences within the state and I hope 1) everyone will attend, you can register here and 2) all those attending will reach out to me to connect live

— Jodie Gillon
President and CEO
Collaborative Connecticut 
TODAY, April 18, 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
​Join us for Collaborative CT at BAR Pizza for a cash bar, delicious pizza and salad sponsored by Angel Investor Forum (AIF).

WIB-Connecticut: Three Year Anniversary Party! 
TODAY, April 18, 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Happy Anniversary WIB-Connecticut! We are excited to invite you to come celebrate our third year of the Connecticut Women In Bio chapter. So much has happened this past…

Celebration of The Life Center of Connecticut, Inc. – Hosted by Youth Challenge of CT
Friday, April 19, 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Please join the Youth Challenge of CT as they reflect on our past achievements, highlight the exciting endeavors that lie ahead, and express gratitude to the remarkable…

Make a Wish CT Evening Gala
Saturday, April 20, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Make a Wish CT’s annual dinner, dance and auction is back. Be part of the magic on April 20, 2024! The Evening of Wishes Gala at Mohegan Sun features powerful storytelling…

Councils & Conversation: Cybersecurity Basics – Hosted by GNHCC 
Wednesday, April 24, 8:00 am – 9:30 am
Talk to our panel to learn how you can prioritize cybersecurity initiatives effectively without breaking the bank.

CLA’s 2024 Economic Outlook — Second Quarter Update 
Wednesday, April 24, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
The CLA 2024 Outlook series provides key insights to help both business owners and individuals develop sound financial strategies.

Unlock Your Business Potential: Outsourcing for Growth – Hosted by CLA 
Thursday, April 25, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Are you a business leader who wants to learn how to focus on your core competencies and grow your organization faster? Do you struggle with managing accounting tasks and keeping up…

EWIB-Connecticut: How to Build Your Personal Brand and Network Effectively on LinkedIn 
Thursday, April 25, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Are you aiming to elevate your leadership brand or take the next step in your career? Learn innovative personal branding and networking strategies to land your dream job…

PULSE Professional Development Event – The Blake Hotel 
Tuesday, April 30, 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Join us as Alicia Valentino, Manager/Stylist at Valentino Tailors, will deliver an insightful presentation focusing on the intricacies of dressing for success and how elevating your…

StartUp Westport Innovator of the Year Award – Hosted by The Westport Library
Tuesday, April 30, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Sports media visionary and ESPN Chairman Jimmy Pitaro is being honored by Startup Westport with its inaugural Innovator of the Year Award…

Scientifically Speaking – Beyond the Cortex: Causative Factors of Brain Deterioration — Hosted by The Jackson Laboratory 
Tuesday, May 7, 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Scientifically Speaking is a virtual event series designed to highlight JAX’s distinctive combination of research, education and resources and our role in empowering the…

ABCT Pitch Day 2024 
Thursday, May 9, 1:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Join an audience of entrepreneurs, investors, corporate sponsors, and other members of the life sciences ecosystem to see the ventures from the 7th annual cohort of the…

Women’s Health Initiative Panel: Perspectives on Policy, Investment, Research and Innovation – Hosted by Wiggin and Dana 
Wednesday, May 15, 8:00 am – 11:00 am
Please join Wiggin and Dana’s Life Science Practice Group for an insightful breakfast discussion, “Women’s Health Initiative Panel: Perspectives on Policy, Investment, Research and Innovation.”…

Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare 
Thursday, May 16, 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Join the Connecticut Health Council for this morning event packed with information about AI and its applications to the healthcare industry.

Register Now

Yale Innovation Summit 
Wednesday, May 29 – Thursday, May 30
Connecticut’s biggest entrepreneurship event, convening innovators, investors, and industry for panels, speakers, and networking in the arts, biotech, climate, health, and tech.

2024 BIO International Convention 
Monday, June 3 – Thursday, June 6
The BIO International Convention is the largest and most comprehensive event for biotechnology, representing the full ecosystem of biotech with over 20,000 industry…

Full Events Calendar
Please email Caitlin Truesdale to share any news and events: