Kathy Ordonez '72 H'00

Hartwick to Host Biotechnology Symposium November 5

October 25, 2011

Hartwick College will host "Biotechnology in Practice: Promises & Perils" from 1-5 p.m. on Saturday, November 5 in the Anderson Center for the Arts on the Hartwick College campus. The event will feature a number of Hartwick College alumni and parents of current students, all of whom are on the cutting edge of the biotechnology field.

Registration is required. For more information, or to register, contact Alyssa Militello at 607-431-4039 or

"Biotechnology is definitely the wave of the future - it's where the jobs are," said Hartwick College Professor of Biology Stanley K. Sessions. "When I first came to Hartwick in 1989, what really struck me was that the faculty were all really dedicated to the idea that the best way to teach students biology was for them to get involved and do their own research. This has been a long tradition here at Hartwick College.

"I've seen over and over again that students who take advantage of this opportunity to get involved in their own research do quite well when they graduate," he continued. "Doing this kind of experiential learning makes them very, very marketable."

The symposium's keynote speaker will be Kathy Ordoñez, a member of the Hartwick College class of 1972, and an honorary degree recipient in 2000. She will speak on "Practical Applications of Biotechnology Innovations."

Ordoñez is Senior Vice President, Discovery and Development, for Quest Diagnostics and President of Celera. She manages Quest Diagnostics' innovation pipeline and reducing cycle time to introduce new tests and technologies. As President of Celera, she drives its focus on personalizing disease management through diagnostic products and services, including Berkeley HeartLab.

Ordoñez joined Quest Diagnostics with its acquisition of Celera in May 2011. She served as Chief Executive Officer of Celera and was a founder of Celera Diagnostics. She held a number of senior positions over a 15-year period with Hoffmann La-Roche, where she oversaw the formation of Roche Molecular Systems, serving as President and Chief Executive Officer, and led the application of polymerase chain reaction technology to the diagnostic, research and forensic fields.

Before joining Roche, Ordoñez held several marketing and scientific positions in Baker Instruments, a Division of Richardson-Vicks, and Union Carbide Corporation. This included a three-year assignment in the Far East. Ordoñez holds a bachelor's degree in chemistry and an honorary Doctorate of Sciences from Hartwick College and has taken graduate courses in Biochemistry, Finance, Marketing and Business Administration from Pace University, New York Medical College, and University of Pennsylvania.

Also planned for the symposium are two panel discussions. The first, "Exploring the Promises: The Future of Biotechnology," will feature Lousie Hecker '00, instructor of medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and CEO of Regenerative Solutions, LLC; Robert Siegler '78, senior director of Pharmaceutical Development at Lantheus Medical Imaging; and Gary Vellekamp '73, fellow, Process Development at Merck Laboratories.

The second panel is titled "Exploring the Perils: Risks and Ethical Issues of a Rapidly Changing Landscape." Participants will include James A. Hayward P'13, Chair, CEO and President of Applied DNA Sciences; Salvatore Salamone P'12, CEO of Saladax, Inc; Burton W. Wilcke Jr. '69, Chair, Department of Medical Laboratory and Radiation Services at the University of Vermont and; Burton Zweigenhaft P'13, CEO of OncoMed and BioPharma Partners.

The symposium is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation's Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Program and by Zweigenhaft.

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Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,500 students, located in Oneonta, NY, in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick's expansive curriculum emphasizes a uniquely experiential approach to the liberal arts. Through personalized teaching, collaborative research, a unique January Term, a wide range of internships, and vast study-abroad opportunities, Hartwick ensures that students are prepared for the world ahead. A Three-Year Bachelor's Degree Program and strong financial aid and scholarship offerings keep a Hartwick education affordable

Contact: Christopher Lott
Phone: 607-431-4030