SMU hosts discussion on Rochester DMC economic development


How will Rochester, Mayo growth impact SE MN?


On Tuesday, February 21, Saint Mary’s University’s Kabara Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies is hosting a public discussion about how Rochester’s Destination Medical Center initiative will impact entrepreneurship and economic development in Southeast Minnesota. The public is invited to gain an insider’s perspective from key Mayo Clinic and Rochester business and entrepreneurial leaders.

The 7 p.m. event, titled “The DMC Initiative: Fostering entrepreneurship in the region,” will be held in Figliulo Recital Hall (located in Saint Mary’s Performance Center). Guest speakers will include:

• James (Jim) A. Rogers III, the chair of Mayo Clinic’s newly formed department of business development. This department will be focused on proactive partnering with industry to fill capability gaps and enhance Mayo’s practice. Rogers serves on the Mayo Clinic administrative team, as well as the Medical Industry Relations Committee and on the Investment Committee for Mayo Clinic’s $100 million Venture and Growth Fund. He also serves on several boards including Medical Alley Association and Resoundant, Inc. 

• Bruce Kline, a licensing manager within Mayo Clinic Ventures. Kline directs a portfolio of intellectual property in the fields of radiology, semiconductors, orthopedics, and medical devices while serving on the Location Services and 3D Printing subcommittees. Since starting at Mayo Clinic more than 13 years ago, he has completed numerous revenue-generating agreements including patents and know-how licenses, joint development agreements, and internet provider-based startup companies. 

• Xavier Frigola, director of the Mayo Clinic Business Accelerator, Mayo Clinic’s biotechnology incubator in Rochester. In that role, he helps healthcare startups in their initial phases. The accelerator currently has 23 companies. He also runs operations for Rochester’s $5M seed investment fund (early diligence, deal flow, closing investments, exits). The fund has invested $1.3M in 11 companies. Prior to that, he was a tech transfer professional with Mayo Clinic Ventures, and a researcher at Mayo where he worked in better ways to cure kidney and bladder cancer using your own body’s immune system.

• Jamie Sundsbak, the community manager of Collider Coworking, an entrepreneurial and small business hub located in Rochester. Collider provides space, assistance, and events to fuel the Rochester entrepreneurial ecosystem. 

With Mayo Clinic at its heart, the $5.6 billion Destination Medical Center (DMC) initiative is the catalyst to position Rochester as the world’s premier destination for health and wellness — attracting people, investment opportunities, and jobs, and supporting the economic growth of Minnesota, its bioscience sector, and beyond. Destination Medical Center will generate more than $5 billion in private investments and growth in the next 20 years. Hear how this economic boom could impact Southeast Minnesota from an entrepreneurial perspective.


About the Kabara Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies

The Kabara Institute aims to incite a passion for entrepreneurial spirit in students across Saint Mary’s University, regardless of their major field of study, by providing opportunities for students to interact with entrepreneurs and experience entrepreneurship first-hand, and to foster a greater understanding and appreciation of the importance of entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship in our society.


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