Empowering Healthcare Innovation and Economic Growth in Arkansas

Your Gateway to Research, Intellectual Property, and Industry Collaboration

Our Mission

Our mission is to foster commercial investment in the development of inventions, discoveries and other work products flowing from the research at UAMS, the Arkansas Children’s Hospital and the local VA Hospital in order to enhance human healthcare and stimulate economic development in the state of Arkansas. BioVentures’ role is to serve as the nexus for innovation, entrepreneurial educational models, and management of intellectual property and an entry point for industries seeking collaboration.


Our Story

BioVentures was established as a formal outgrowth of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) interest in promoting a biomedical technology industry for Arkansas and translating its research into products that benefit human health. UAMS established BioVentures to maximize global, industrial interaction with the University of Arkansas faculty, as well as to facilitate technology transfer, the development of startup companies that are based on technology developed at UAMS, and contributions to Arkansas’ economic development. 

Meet the Team


Eric C. Peterson, Ph.D.

Interim President

Suzette Smith, PMP

Project Coordinator

Julia Massana


Alex Escobar, MS, MBA

VP Operations

Sarah J. Heinz, BBA, MBA

Assistant Director, Business Operations

Brenda K. Tennison


Tracie D. Seidl

Admin Services

Licensing Team

John Sherrill, Ph.D., MPH

Licensing Manager

Michael Geranen

Technology Manager

Grants Team

Rachel Ott

Director Grants

Rebecca Todd, MS

Grant Writer

Cara Sanders

Grant Writer 

Nicole Smith

Grant Writer


Morten Jensen, Ph.D., DrMed, FAHA

VP Engineering

Adria Abella

Engineering Team

Sam Stephens

Research Engineer

Anthony Gunderman

Engineering Entrepreneur

Entrepreneurship & Economic Development

John Imig, Ph.D.

VP Technology Acceleration

Jay Gandy, Ph.D.

Entrepreneur in Residence

Robert Griffin, Ph.D.

VP of Small Business Concerns

Stefanie Kennon-McGill, Ph.D.

Sr. Program Manager

Dmitri Scott

Program Manager

Joe Schaffner, MPA

Outreach Coordinator

Thomas Forcum

Intership Coordinator

Amy Widner

Communications Manager

BioVentures Board

The BioVentures Board comprises a select group of individuals from the realms of business, education, philanthropy and the investment community. The Board advises BioVentures on policies and practices to facilitate basic, medical, clinical and translational research; develop information, products and processes resulting from such research; invest and manage assets to meet priority needs of UAMS and BioVentures.