Location: Trenton, NJ
Industry: Trade association
President and CEO
BioNJ wants to preserve a robust life sciences ecosystem in New Jersey. “Our mission is to ensure that legislators at both the federal and the state level are doing things that help and not hurt the industry,” says Debbie Hart, president and CEO of BioNJ. The organization has created more than 30 different educational and networking forums during the year to help industry professionals get together, find funding and meet new clients or employees. It also provides member discounts and talent services.
Fun Fact: “Because I love my work so much, I work approximately 80 hours a week.”
“We’re blessed because our mission is to help our companies help patients,” says Hart. “I think that is the definition of giving back, of community service, of making the world a better place. … We make sure that there are programs in place, in terms of federal and state policy, that enable patients to have access to the drugs they need, and that companies are supported in the development of those therapies and cures.”
One signature event for BioNJ is the CEO Summit. “We bring top-level thought leaders together to think and talk about important industry challenges and trends, and learn from each other,” says Hart. “This enables our organization to make a difference in the professional lives of those CEOs and C-level folks who attend, as well as the service providers, and then ultimately the ecosystem.” Since BioNJ’s founding, the number of biotech companies in New Jersey has grown from about 30 to more than 400 today.