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IowaBio is Proud to Announce 2024 Biotech Leaders


IowaBio is Proud to Announce 2024 Biotech Leaders

“We are thrilled to recognize two outstanding leaders for the 2024 Iowa Biotech Leader Award," said IowaBio Executive Director, Jessica Hyland.

DES MOINES, IA (March 4, 2024) – The Iowa Biotechnology Association (IowaBio) is proud to announce the recipients of the 2024 Biotech Leader Award, Dr. Frances Johnson, Chief Innovation Officer, Perspective Therapeutics and Dr. Anthony Kinney, Research Director, Corteva Agriscience.

Dr. Johnson and Dr. Kinney were selected to receive the prestigious award from a pool of nominees reviewed by a panel of industry experts. The award will be presented to Dr. Johnson and Mr. Kinney during the Iowa Biotech Showcase & Conference on February 28 in Ankeny, Iowa.

The Biotech Leader Award is given to individuals who have demonstrated leadership within their organization and across the industry, an ability to bring innovative biotechnology products and services to the marketplace, and a commitment to advocate on behalf of Iowa’s life science sectors. The 2024 selection committee was proud to recognize this year’s awardees for their tremendous impacts on the growth of Iowa’s biotech industry.

Dr. Frances Johnson MD, is a physician scientist and entrepreneur with experience leading multi-disciplinary teams in academic, government, and private enterprise settings. She founded a biotech company in Iowa to bring innovative cancer therapeutics to market. Throughout her career, Dr. Johnson has received $22 million in NIH grants, $20 million seed and Series A funding, and a merger bringing $50 million to the company and going public. Perspective Therapeutics had a recent partnership with a larger Pharma company that includes $56 million in cash coupled with to be determined equity investments and strategic partnerships. Recently, Perspective Therapeutics purchased a 20,000 sq ft building in Coralville to expand production and R&D.

Dr. Anthony Kinney recently retired after a 35-year career at DuPont, DuPont-Pioneer and Corteva, where he led the discovery, development, and product launch of a novel market segment for soybeans. A plant biochemist by training, Dr. Kinney received his Doctorate from Oxford University in the United Kingdom. As a research leader in DuPont-Pioneer (now Corteva Agriscience), he focused on applying emerging transgenic and gene editing technologies to improve the value of agricultural crops. His team delivered Corteva’s first gene-edited variants in soybean and made essential technical contributions to the advancement of next-generation soybean products. 

“We are thrilled to recognize two outstanding leaders for the 2024 Iowa Biotech Leader Award," said IowaBio Executive Director, Jessica Hyland. "Dr. Johnson and Dr. Kinney are amazing examples of Iowa’s biotech industry both on a national and global stage. Their contributions to the state’s diverse biotechnology sector have made Iowa a worldwide leader for innovative technology that transcends many fields of research. We are proud to name Dr. Johnson and Dr. Kinney the 2024 Biotech Leaders of the Year.”

Joe Leo (left) moderates a fireside chat at the Iowa Biotech Showcase and Conference with 2024 Iowa Biotech Leader award recipients, Dr. Frances Johnson (center) and Dr. Anthony Kinney (right). 

About IowaBio

Since 1994, the Iowa Biotechnology Association (IowaBio) has provided benefits and services to promote the interests and growth of the life sciences industries in Iowa. IowaBio is a non-profit, membership-based organization with a diversified membership including industry companies from all segments of biotechnology, universities & colleges, state & federal associations, as well as numerous service and support companies. The Association seeks to promote the success and growth of biotech-based businesses in Iowa. For more information, please visit 

About the Iowa Biotech Showcase & Conference

The Iowa Biotech Showcase & Conference is a conference held every spring featuring a startup pitch competition, industry-specific and collaboration-focused breakout sessions, legislative update, keynote presentation, and networking features. IBSC brings together innovators, investors, biotech leaders, and support vendors, and provides top-notch information and content to Iowa’s diverse biotech industry.

This year’s award was sponsored and presented by America’s Cultivation Corridor. America's Cultivation Corridor builds industry momentum by elevating innovation and connecting businesses to leading research, capital, and talent assets as well as by promoting business and organizations, talent, and investment in Iowa.

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