Friday, February 08, 2008

Virginia Bioscience Legislative Caucus Kick-off a Success

The Virginia Bioscience Legislative Caucus (VBLC) was launched this week at the 2008 Session of the Virginia General Assembly. On Monday, February 4th, 18 members of the state legislature attended one of three bioscience dinners held simultaneously across the city. At each dinner, an equal number of bioscience company leaders joined them to discuss what is going on with this industry in the Commonwealth.

The next morning, Tuesday, February 5th, more than 70 people met for breakfast at 7 am at the Richmond Marriott to formally kick-off the new Bioscience Caucus. 16 members of the state legislature were able to participate there too. Breakfast attendees heard from speakers such as Delegate John O'Bannon and Senator Janet Howell, the House and Senate co-chairs of the new caucus. They also heard from Mark Herzog of VaBIO, Patrick Kelly of BIO, Brett Vassey of the VMA, Bob Skunda of the Virginia Biotech Park and Aneesh Chopra, Virginia's Secretary of Technology. Also speaking were Ted Melnik, the president of Novozymes Biologicals and Eric Edwards, the Chief Science Officer of Intelliject. Here is the list of legislative participants:

Attended Dinner and Breakfast:
Sen. Ralph Northam (D)
Sen. Janet Howell (D)
Del. Donald Merricks (R)
Del. David Nutter (R)
Del. John O’Bannon (R)
Del. Margaret Vanderhye (D)

Breakfast Only:
Sen. Harry Blevins (R)
Sen. Mark Herring (D)
Sen. L. Louise Lucas (D)
Sen. Henry Marsh, III (D)
Del. Anne Crockett-Stark (R)
Del. Albert Eisenberg (D)
Del. Jimmie Massie (R)
Del. Joe Morrissey (D)
Del. Kenneth Plum (D)
Del. David Poisson (D)

Dinner Only:
Sen. John Edwards (D)
Sen. Fred Quayle (R)
Sen. Patsy Ticer (D)
Sen. Toddy Puller (D)
Del. Phil Hamilton (R)
Del. Bob Brink (D)
Del. Steve Shannon (D)
Del. Mark Sickles (D)
Del. Chris Peace (R)
Del. Joe May (R)
Del. Kathy Byron (R)
Del. Jennifer McClellan (D)

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