SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. & LOS ANGELES & SAN DIEGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Biocom California, the association representing the California life science industry, today announced the creation of a new vice chair of diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) for its board of directors, and the formation of a board-level public policy advisory committee. Bernard Parker, managing director of Caligen Bio and Biocom California Board Member, will serve as vice chair of DE&I and Charles Dadswell, general counsel of Illumina and Biocom California Board Member, will serve as chairman of the newly formed public policy advisory committee.
The appointment of Mr. Parker supports Biocom California’s continued commitment to address social and economic inequities in the life science industry by working with its member companies to drive accountability and support lasting change. In 2020, Biocom California assembled a DE&I Task Force to enable member companies to implement initiatives encouraging a more diverse, equitable and inclusive community and in June 2021, developed the DE&I Member Pledge.
“Following the formation of the DE&I Task Force and resulting DE&I Member Pledge to develop strategic imperatives that foster a more diverse, equitable and inclusive current and future workforce, adding a board level vice chair of DE&I is a natural step in the progression of elevating this issue further,” said Joe Panetta, president and chief executive officer of Biocom California. “Bringing a thought leader and visionary to help guide the board who is dedicated to building a more representative, equitable, and inclusive life science industry reflects this commitment.”
“Making the commitment to create a more diverse workforce is an important first step, and translating that into actionable strategies that companies can execute is crucial if we are to address persistent inequities and fulfill our industry’s vast promise,” said Mr. Parker. “I’m encouraged by the actions that we have already taken and am excited to continue to work with the board to accelerate this change and address these critical disparities.”
The new public policy advisory committee supports Biocom California’s advocacy initiatives in relation to reviewing and driving relevant policy programs and legislative proposals in the life sciences industry statewide. Mr. Dadswell and the committee will work with Biocom California’s leadership team to identify and ensure key policy positions are communicated to members and will work with elected officials to build on the organization’s commitment to advocate on behalf of the industry.
“Biocom California is a powerful statewide organization with a highly influential and respected voice on state and federal issues,” said Mr. Panetta. “Our board chose to elevate our work through a formal public policy committee to deepen engagement with policy makers and increase awareness of our industry in Sacramento and Washington D.C. The COVID-19 pandemic revealed the strength, resilience, and economic impact of the life science industry and we believe meaningful engagement between life science industry executives and our elected officials on critical policy issues has never been more important.”
“Biocom California has been a strong voice representing the California life sciences industry and has unique expertise and experience in relevant issues that impact the industry,” said Mr. Dadswell. “I look forward to working with the leaders and executives on the board, tapping into their insights to identify how best to drive legislation that continues to fuel innovation and novel research across the state and nationwide.”
About Biocom California
Biocom California is the leader and advocate for California’s life science sector. We work on behalf of more than 1,500 members to drive public policy, build an enviable network of industry leaders, create access to capital, introduce cutting-edge STEM education programs and create robust value-driven purchasing programs.
Founded in 1995 in San Diego, Biocom California provides the strongest public voice to research institutions and companies that fuel the local and state-wide economy. Our goal is simple: to help our members produce novel solutions that improve the human condition. In addition to our San Diego headquarters, Biocom California operates core offices in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area, satellite offices in Washington, D.C. and Tokyo, and has a continuous staff presence in Sacramento. Our broad membership benefits apply to biotechnology, pharmaceutical, medical device, genomics and diagnostics companies of all sizes, as well as to research universities and institutes, clinical research organizations, investors and service providers.