A Father’s Passion and A Nonprofit Leader’s Vision: Funding Life-Saving Research through Impact-Investment and Venture Philanthropy Partnerships
A critical juncture in medical research and drug discovery is known as the “valley of…
Rose Wang is a serial entrepreneur who helps other individuals and teams—including female cancer researchers—start their own businesses and make them thrive.
Wang is the founder of Binary Group, a consulting and business solutions firm. She also currently serves as Executive Advisor to the AIM-HI Accelerator Fund, a cancer impact investment organization launched in 2019 by the National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR) that focuses on early stage cancer start-ups.
Not a lot of women are starting companies in the biotech space, and Wang wants to change that.
“The problem is not pipeline,” she states. “Forty to 45 percent of doctoral student candidates are women at our top universities.”
Rather, Wang hopes to curate women—especially those in cancer research—who want to be entrepreneurs in their fields of study and practice.
With an initial philanthropic investment from NFCR, she says AIM-HI’s mission is to accelerate the cancer drug discovery process, to make it sustainable for further development within the pharmaceutical industry and, finally, to re-invest into the bench research process.
In addition to innovative science and out-of-the-box thinking, curing cancer will require substantial funding, Wang says. And one of the greatest challenges facing even brilliant scientists is the significant resource gap between basic oncology research and initial clinical trials, known by researchers as the “Valley of Death.”
While early stage research is the critical first step towards developing new drugs, many new and worthwhile ideas perish if left unfunded.
Wang knows how not only to cross the chasm but how to rise exceedingly high above it.
In her career, she has started five companies and lucratively exited from at least two of them. Wang also plays important roles with a number of organizations, particularly those supporting women entrepreneurs. For example, she serves as an Entrepreneur in Residence at George Washington University, was appointed twice to the National Women’s Business Council and was recently on the Board of Directors of Women Impacting Public Policy.
“One of my great passions is to focus on entrepreneurship,” Wang says. “So this new role (at AIM-HI) fits me perfectly.”