CBLS 'Ties Everything Together' for This Industry Executive
Vice President, Corporate Development, AIT Laboratories
“With the reputation of the medical school and the world-class chemistry department, IU attracts great researchers. CBLS ties everything together by acting as a bridge between private industry and academic research."
For Todd Pedersen, being involved with the Center for the Business of Life Sciences makes good business sense. He’s an executive at one of Indiana’s top life sciences firms, Indianapolis-based AIT Laboratories, and he knows the connections he’s making through CBLS only make his firm stronger and more competitive.
Not that it needs much help. As one of the leading forensics labs in the country, AIT is making the Hoosier state proud. In 2009, the firm was named the “Small Business of the Year” by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and for the second straight year was named one of the “Best Places to Work in Indiana,” also by the chamber.
“IU is a major player within the life sciences community worldwide and especially in the state of Indiana,” says Pedersen, Vice President of Corporate Development at AIT, who is also a member of the CBLS Industry Advisory Board. “With the reputation of the medical school and the world-class chemistry department, IU attracts great researchers. CBLS ties everything together by acting as a bridge between private industry and academic research. CBLS is a good forum for business leaders to exchange ideas,” he says.
CBLS and IU are also great places to recruit exceptional employees and to train current ones, notes Pedersen. “Of five executive team members, three of us have undergraduate degrees from IU, two have MBAs from Kelley, and our CEO and founder has his PhD from the IU School of Medicine. We hire interns every year with CBLS experiences as well,” he says. “Through CBLS, we get direct interaction with students for recruitment purposes. We get to know the projects they’re involved in and we can sit down with their professors and get good recommendations.” In addition, AIT has sponsored two employees to participate in CBLS’s executive education program, earning their Executive Certificate in the Business of Life Sciences.
Pedersen truly values his collaboration with CBLS and the birds-eye view of the life sciences industry he’s getting. “My involvement on the board pulls AIT up on a higher level and gives us a better perspective of what is going on. With CBLS, we benefit from IU’s network and all of its world-wide outreach,” he says.