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Former Georgia Research Alliance CEO joining Emory University


The Georgia Research Alliance’s Michael Cassidy is joining Emory University, according to Emory President Claire E. Sterk.

Cassidy will take a new position that is designed to provide vision and leadership to promote biomedical innovation and enhance the university’s economic engagement in the Atlanta region and beyond.  

As director of the new Emory Biomedical Catalyst, Cassidy will lead efforts to enhance innovation, entrepreneurship and development of intellectual property, as well as identifying and developing areas of frontier research. He began working with Emory this week.

“Emory University’s research initiatives have benefitted society in many ways,” Sterk said in a release. “Mike Cassidy brings great experience in translating research into impact, and his work here will energize an already vibrant and collaborative faculty and student culture.”

Cassidy served as president and CEO of the Georgia Research Alliance for 18 years, helping the public-private entity become of the nation’s premier organizations for technology-based economic development.

During his tenure, Cassidy generated broad-based support for the GRA’s mission, including economic development and building and sustaining the non-profit’s powerful set of relationships with companies, professional organizations, universities, and leaders at the local, state and national level.

He expanded the GRA’s mission of recruiting world-class scientists to Georgia universities, investing in state-of-the-art research technology for university labs, launching new companies around university inventions, and forging and strengthening alliances among universities and industry.

“I have tremendous respect for Mike Cassidy and his accomplishments at the Georgia Research Alliance in raising Georgia’s stature as a leading state for biomedical innovation and partnership,” said Jonathan S. Lewin, MD, Emory executive vice president for health affairs and executive director of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center. “His skills and experience make him the ideal director for Emory Biomedical Catalyst, which will serve as a results-oriented catalyst for biomedical innovation throughout Emory University, inspiring colleagues to achieve new levels of expertise, confidence and productivity.” 

Cassidy will report to Lewin and to Vikas Sukhatme, MD, dean of Emory University School of Medicine. He also will work closely with research leaders and with initiatives in innovation and entrepreneurship throughout the university, including the Office of Research, Office of Technology Transfer, the Emory Healthcare Innovation Hub, the Coulter Translational Research Program, the Georgia Clinical and Translational Science Alliance, the office of the provost and the office of the senior vice president for research.

“I am very excited and honored to be joining one of the nation’s top academic research institutions” Cassidy said. “I look forward to contributing to Emory’s continued leadership in driving innovation and economic impact.”

Cassidy serves on the boards of the State Science and Technology Institute, the Health Care Ethics Consortium, Primary Care Innovation Fund, the Global Center for Medical Innovation, Georgia’s Bio/Med Investor Network, Atlanta Emerging Markets Inc. and the Georgia Chamber of Commerce.

He has a master’s degree in Technology and Science Policy from Georgia Tech and a BBA in Marketing from Georgia State University