August 18, 2015 at 11:15am

Science Entrepreneurship Speaker Series

Millikin Speaker Series

The Millikin University Institute for Science Entrepreneurship, a signature program of Millikin's Center for Entrepreneurship, will kick off its 2015-2016 Speaker Series on Thursday, Sept. 3, 2015, with keynote speaker U.S. Congressman and Millikin alumnus Rodney Davis '92, (R-Ill.) 13th Congressional District.

The presentation will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Lower Richards Treat University Center on Millikin's campus; the event is free and open to the public.

Rodney DavisDuring the presentation, Congressman Davis will discuss how legislation discussed at the federal level, such as issues on agriculture and transportation, can impact citizens in central Illinois.

Rodney Davis was recently sworn into his second term in Congress serving the 13th District of Illinois, a 14-county district covering both urban and rural areas of central and southwestern Illinois. Prior to being elected, Davis served as projects director for Congressman John Shimkus (IL-15) for 16 years helping Illinois citizens and communities cut through government red tape and secure federal funding.

For the 114th Congress, Davis will serve on the House Agriculture Committee, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and the House Administration Committee. He has also been appointed to serve as the chairman of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Biotechnology, Horticulture, and Research.

Millikin's Science Entrepreneurship Speaker Series, sponsored by Busey, focuses on science entrepreneurship and how an increased emphasis on entrepreneurship can spark job creation and societal well-being. Throughout the academic year, executives from science ventures discuss particular aspects of their business. In addition, business leaders discuss broader topics of interest.

Future dates and speakers are as follows:

• Thursday, Oct. 8: Speaker: Jim Hawkins, Caterpillar Inc., Director of Mining Technology Enabled Solutions

• Tuesday, Nov. 10: Speaker: Van Dukeman, First Busey Corporation, President and Chief Executive Officer

• Thursday, Dec. 3: Speaker: To be determined

All speaking engagements begin at 7:30 p.m. in Lower Richards Treat University Center and are free and open to the public.

The Institute for Science Entrepreneurship was originally funded by a Millikin University Performance Learning Enhancement Grant in December 2012. Since that time, the institute has received funding from the Andreas Foundation, Coleman Foundation, 300 Below Inc., a private foundation and anonymous donors to develop the 2015-2016 Speaker Series and other institute programming.

The Institute for Science Entrepreneurship connects Millikin University, its students, and the greater community to opportunities for personal, professional, and organizational advancement through science entrepreneurship. The institute was founded by Dr. David Horn, associate professor of biology, Dr. George Bennett, professor of chemistry, and Dr. Casey Watson, associate professor of physics.

Busey is the title sponsor of Millikin University's Institute for Science Entrepreneurship 2015-2016 Speaker Series. First Busey Corporation (Nasdaq: BUSE) is a $3.9 billion financial holding company headquartered in Champaign, Ill. Busey Bank, First Busey Corporation's wholly-owned bank subsidiary, is also headquartered in Champaign, Ill., and has 28 banking centers serving Illinois, a banking center in Indianapolis, Ind., and seven banking centers serving southwest Florida. For more information, visit

For more information on the speaker series or the Millikin Institute for Science Entrepreneurship, call 217.424.6392 or visit