April 14, 2015 at 2:00pm

Science Entrepreneurship Speaker Series continues with Ken Smithmier

The Millikin University Institute for Science Entrepreneurship, a signature program of Millikin's Center for Entrepreneurship, will continue its 2014-2015 Speaker Series on Thursday, April 30, with keynote speaker Ken Smithmier, president and chief executive officer of Illinois Health and Science (IHS).
The presentation will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the East Room of Lower Richards Treat University Center on Millikin's campus; the event is free and open to the public.
As part of his presentation, Smithmier will explain how Decatur Memorial Hospital (DMH) launched a business that will help address healthcare needs around the world.
Smithmier has been with Illinois Health and Science since 1993. IHS is the parent corporation of a number of companies including: Decatur Memorial Hospital, a 2000 employee organization including an owned physician multispecialty group, two imaging centers, and two surgery centers. DMH has frequently been cited by government and private organizations for high levels of performance in a variety of quality measurements including being named a Top 50 Heart Hospital for the fourth year in a row.
IHS also includes Zevacor Molecular, an Indianapolis-based firm started by IHS in 2013 for the production and distribution of radiopharmaceuticals important in nuclear medicine imaging. In fall 2015, Zevacor will install a 70 MeV cyclotron which will be the world's largest privately owned cyclotron devoted to medical isotopes.
Smithmier has spent his entire life in healthcare starting as an 18-year-old Navy corpsman. After the service, he was a 1978 graduate of the St. Louis University Physician Assistant program and worked as a physician assistant for five years. He subsequently graduated from the University of Minnesota with a master's degree in hospital administration.
Prior to joining IHS, Smithmier held a variety of executive positions in hospitals, from small rural facilities to major teaching hospital positions at BJC Healthcare in St. Louis, Mo.
Smithmier has extensive experience throughout the healthcare industry. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Illinois Hospital Association from 1998 to 2004 and served as chairman in 2003. He is a past member of the American Hospital Association's (AHA) Regional Policy Board and has served on many AHA committees and task forces.
The speaker series 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.
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 2014-2015 Speaker Series and other institute programming.
Formed by Dr. David Horn, associate professor of biology, Dr. George Bennett, professor of chemistry, and Dr. Casey Watson, associate professor of physics and astronomy, the Institute for Science Entrepreneurship connects external clients with faculty and students of Millikin to provide high quality services to science companies and private practices.
In addition to the speaker series, the Institute for Science Entrepreneurship has recently garnered several accomplishments including external funding from Caterpillar Decatur to support a new course entitled "Introduction to Science Entrepreneurship," external funding and a collaboration between 300 Below Inc. and Millikin University, and a collaboration with the Community Foundation of Macon County to host a discussion on poverty.
The Institute for Science Entrepreneurship also offers Performance Learning opportunities for students through its new Science Entrepreneurship Research Fellow Program. The program matches student interest with needs of private practices and companies in the health and natural sciences.
For more information on the speaker series or the Millikin Institute for Science Entrepreneurship, call 217.424.6392 or visit millikin.edu/InstituteForScienceEntrepreneurship.