Dr. Maude Tessier

Describe your education and training at UHN.
I received my B.Sc. Hon. degree in Biochemistry from McGill University and earned my Ph.D. from the Department of Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto. My graduate research was focused on identifying and characterizing a novel kinase involved in cancer and was performed under the mentorship of Dr. James R. Woodgett, while he was still a Scientist at OCI.

What is an Assistant Director, Business Development and Strategic Initiatives?
The mission of the Technology and Innovation Development Office (TIDO) is to translate the research excellence and clinical care at BCH into lifesaving biomedical products, devices and procedures for the public benefit. As Assistant Director, Business Development and Strategic Initiatives, my role is to initiate, develop and realize partnerships between Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH) and industry partners that create value at all stages of research, development, and pre-clinical and clinical investigation. Working closely with BCH investigators and corporate partners, I connect groups with similar R&D objectives and complementary resources and help to structure partnerships for mutual benefit. I also lead TIDO’s Marketing Team and oversee TIDO’s external and internal communications, outreach events, and strategic marketing initiatives as well as the office’s primary and secondary market research performed to evaluate invention disclosures and to package technology opportunities for licensing.

What is a typical day like for you?
In an office like TIDO and in a position like mine, no two days are alike. On any given day, I could be learning about a new research area within BCH, discussing a development partnership with a pharma company, reviewing contracts and project proposals, going to a networking event, attending a business conference or preparing a presentation for an external audience.

What is the best part of your job?
It’s an honor to be working at BCH and representing an institution with world class research and groundbreaking innovations that benefit patients and the public at large. I get the chance to interact with smart, talented and passionate individuals every day here at BCH as well as in pharma and biotech companies in Boston and beyond. The variety in day-to-day duties also means that it is an extremely interesting and fulfilling career path.

Any advice for trainees interested in pursuing a career in this field?
Be the most well-rounded individual that you can be. There is no typical career path for individuals in business development in the life sciences field. A science foundation is key to success in this career path but it also demands a combination of business acumen, project management expertise and soft skills such as oral and written communication skills and the ability to develop positive relationships with individuals of various backgrounds.