Platinum Sponsors

The Right Place


Silver Sponsors

B. Braun


Humphrey Products



Motion Dynamics

NTK Cutting Tools

Performance Validation

Rose Medical

Supporting Organizations

applied Medical Device Institute

Experience Grand Rapids

Grand Valley State University


Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Michigan State University

Gold Sponsors

Autocam Medical



Bronze Sponsors

Keystone Solutions Group

Orchid Orthopedics


Safari Circuits


Xcentric Mold and Engineering

Russell Branaghan

Norman J. Beauchamp Jr., M.D., MHS, Dean, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine; Associate Provost, Vice President of Health Affairs
In October of 2016, Dr. Norman J. Beauchamp Jr. became dean of the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. Prior to this career change, he was a professor and chairperson of the Department of Radiology at the University of Washington—a position he assumed in 2002. He served as vice chairperson and chairperson of the University of Washington Faculty Senate, was president of the clinical practice of 1,600 physicians employed by the university, and was medical director of the Seattle/King County Clinic, which provided dental, vision, and medical care to thousands of low-income and uninsured patients. Dr. Beauchamp also served as professor of neurological surgery and industrial and systems engineering at UW. In addition to his role as dean, he accepted the newly created position of associate provost and vice president of health affairs to lead strategic development and implementation of safety and quality practices and initiatives across all of MSU’s healthcare services. These include student health clinics, physical therapy and trainers for student-athletes, and all clinical activities for the colleges of Human Medicine, Nursing, and Osteopathic Medicine, as well as the MSU HealthTeam.

Russell Branaghan

Dr. Russell J. Branaghan, Founder/Chief Scientist, Research Collective
Dr. Russell J. Branaghan serves as founder/chief scientist at Research Collective, a Human Factors research firm, specializing in medical devices and healthcare technologies. Dr. Branaghan also serves as associate professor of human systems engineering at Arizona State University and is a visiting professor of human factors in the Master of Product Design and Development Program at Northwestern. Before forming Research Collective, he spent 15 years in industry as senior human factors engineer at Hewlett-Packard, an advisory human factors engineer at IBM, and held leadership positions at Fitch, Big Red Rooster, and Lextant.

Kristin Burgard

Kristin Burgard, Project Manager, Small Company Innovation Program
Kristin Burgard is a project manager of the Small Company Innovation Program (SCIP), where she’s worked in product management, marketing, and technical sales. For the past five years, Burgard has helped small businesses in Michigan get technology-based products to market. She has a BS from Carnegie Mellon University, an MBA from Michigan State University, and is a consultant for the Ann Arbor start-up, Self-Aware Technologies. The Small Company Innovation Program is funded by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and is intended to help companies overcome a common challenge faced by small companies and entrepreneurs—getting research and development needs met so they can get to commercialization faster. Through SCIP, companies collaborate with faculty at any of the 15 public universities in the state on co-funded projects. The program is managed by a team at the University of Michigan Economic Growth Institute, a division of UM that works with tech companies as well as companies and communities in distress.

Ryan Erickson

Ryan Erickson, Vice President—Packaging Engineer, Packaging Compliance Labs
Ryan Erickson completed his education at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan, where he earned a degree in packaging engineering. Following the completion of his degree, Erickson began his career with Cardinal Health in Chicago, Illinois. At Cardinal Health, he served as a packaging engineer as he developed his skills in packaging validation and testing. Upon returning to Grand Rapids, Michigan, Erickson’s hometown, he accepted the position of packaging engineering manager for Vention Medical, a large contract manufacturer for many large OEMs in the medical device industry. In late 2014, he co-founded Packaging Compliance Labs (PCL) with partner Matthew Lapham. They formed PCL with the mission to help medical device and pharma clients speed their products to market by breaking down the barriers that relate to packaging. As the vice president—packaging engineer, Erickson serves as the technical expert on the team—guiding trainings and lean events—as well as engages the medical device community as an opinion leader.

John Farris

John Farris, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Engineering, Grand Valley State University
John Farris, Ph.D., is a full professor in the Department of Engineering at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He joined the faculty after a successful tenure as the chief product designer for a medical device manufacturer. His other significant industrial experience includes designing engine components for Caterpillar Inc. and consulting on the design of stationary fuel cell power generation units. In 2002, Dr. Farris and a colleague were awarded an NSF grant to create a biomedical engineering Master’s program. In 2008, Dr. Farris was one of the founding professors of the Product Design and Manufacturing major. Student teams in the major have developed products for medical professionals and hospital systems all over the state of Michigan. His current research interests are design methods and medical technology. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Rhode Island and his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Lehigh University.

Clayton Hall

Clayton Hall, Vice President, Government Affairs, Medical Device Manufacturers Association (MDMA)
Prior to joining MDMA, Clayton spent 12 years working on Capitol Hill and served as Chief of Staff to three Members of the U.S. House of Representatives: former Congressmen Jim McCrery (LA) and Anh “Joseph” Cao (LA), and Congressman Tim Griffin (AR). McCrery and Griffin both served on the powerful Ways and Means Committee, the chief tax-writing committee in the House, which has significant jurisdiction over federal health care policy. Clayton managed a diverse portfolio of political and policy issues while he was on the Hill, playing a major role in drafting numerous pieces of legislation, including legislation to reform the federal regulatory regime, and Medicare payment policies. Mr. Hall received a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from Washington and Lee University in Virginia.

Nada Hanafi

Nada Hanafi, Chief of Strategy Officer, Experien Group LLC
Nada Hanafi joined Experien Group in 2017 after working 12+ years at FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH). Since 2010, she had been a CDRH Senior Science Health Advisor, serving as an expert consultant and senior advisor in the Center Director’s office. Nada combines her deep institutional knowledge with innovative approaches to help companies successfully communicate product information to FDA throughout the total product lifecycle. Leveraging her years of reviewer experience and broad FDA exposure, she develops actionable premarket strategies to guide programs through successful submission. She also orchestrates compliance activity. While at FDA, Hanafi led postmarket investigations for ob-gyn devices, wrinkle fillers, tanning devices, breast implants, negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) devices, and metal-on-metal hip implants and she applies this knowledge to help companies effectively manage postmarket requirements.

Birgit M. Klohs

Birgit M. Klohs, President & CEO, The Right Place Inc.
Birgit Klohs is president and CEO of The Right Place Inc., a position she has held since 1987. The Right Place Inc. is the regional economic development organization in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Under her 30-year leadership, The Right Place has created over 44,000 new and retained jobs and spurred over $4.7 billion in new investment. She is a leading economic development strategist, collaborating with local, state, and national organizations on critical issues related to economic development. A native of Germany and leading authority in international business and economic development, Klohs also leads the Right Place’s international business development strategy. She conducts numerous foreign direct investment missions to Europe, Asia, and the Middle East each year, both independently and in collaboration with the State of Michigan and the Governor’s office. She is a frequent speaker on national and international economic development issues, having addressed audiences in France, England, Germany, Sweden, China, Australia, and Israel. 

Brent M. Nowak

Brent M. Nowak, Ph.D., Executive Director, applied Medical Device Institute
Dr. Brent M. Nowak is the founding executive director of the applied Medical Device Institute (aMDI) at Grand Valley State University. aMDI is a non-academic unit of the College of Engineering and Computing that provides doctoral-level, multi-disciplinary engineering analysis, design, fabrication, and testing of emerging medical devices and science at the pace of industry, while serving a broad range of clients from the healthcare to medical device manufacturing industries. Over the last 30 years, Dr. Nowak has led product and technology development programs spanning ideation through commercialization; field use and application in areas including robotic systems, autonomous underwater vehicles and medical devices; and entrepreneurial ventures in formation, pre-seed, and seed stages that have been successfully transitioned to industry.

Jaideep Rajput

Jaideep Rajput, Director—Commercialization, Beaumont Health
Jaideep Rajput leads identification, protection, commercialization, and management of Beaumont’s Intellectual Property (IP) portfolio. He has over 10 years of broad work experience in new product development, technology commercialization, IP licensing, and venture development at startups, established companies, universities, and academic medical centers. Most recently, Rajput was a senior licensing professional at University Hospitals (UH) in Cleveland, Ohio, where he managed business development and commercialization activities across several specialties and ran UH’s investment fund that focused on advancing early stage healthcare technologies developed within the hospital system. Rajput’s experience includes managing innovations in biotech, pharma, health-IT, medical device, and physical sciences. He holds an undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology (I.I.T.) Delhi, a master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from New York University, and a master’s degree in Finance from University of South Florida.

Frederick Shorey

Frederick (Rick) Shorey, Program Director R&D, Surge Cardiovascular and Medisurge
As the program director for product development at Surge and Medisurge, Frederick Shorey’s focus is currently managing, developing, and launching new programs that grow the Surge Cardiovascular and MediSurge product portfolio. Shorey joined Surge and the Alliant companies in October 2015. Over the last 25 years, he has championed product development programs including devices used for on-pump and off-pump cardiac surgery, minimally invasive vascular access, pulmonary support, extracorporeal circuit components, long- and short-term ECMO, and many other disposable surgical accessories. Rick has had the opportunity to set up compliant design control programs for ISO 13485 and FDA 820, develop risk management systems, identify tools and key metrics for opportunity analysis in new product development, streamline development procedures, and expand capabilities of manufacturing to optimize cost and speed to market. In addition to the new platforms, Shorey has worked closely with the business side of innovation, including senior positions in sales engineering for contract manufacturing and senior management responsibilities for Alliant. He has seven patents issued and many additional pending applications.