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Jeff Aronin Receives Northern Illinois University’s 2019 Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award

Jeff Aronin receives Northern Illinois University’s 2019 Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award, presented by Dr. Lisa Freeman, President of NIU, and Dr. Balaji Rajagopalan, Dean of the College of Business. (Photo: Business Wire) Multimedia Gallery URL

CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

Paragon Biosciences, LLC Chairman and CEO Jeff Aronin was recently recognized by the Northern Illinois University (NIU) College of Business as the 2019 recipient of their Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award.

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Jeff Aronin, a graduate of NIU’s College of Business, was honored at their Annual Alumni Luncheon for his venture innovation at Paragon Biosciences. Mr. Aronin is increasing the pace of drug development for severe (and often rare) diseases through Paragon’s contribution of Innovation CapitalTM to its portfolio of bioscience companies.

Balaji Rajagopalan, Ph.D., Dean of the NIU College of Business, presented the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award to Jeff Aronin, commenting that Mr. Aronin has “an exemplary track record of building and transforming organizations through innovation.”

Mr. Aronin has built Paragon to innovate, invest in, build, and advise bioscience companies. This venture model makes it commercially viable for Paragon Biosciences’ portfolio companies to develop potential medicines for diseases which do not yet have FDA-approved treatments. Over the last 18 months, Paragon Biosciences and its partners have invested and committed almost $500 million to help Paragon’s portfolio companies develop new medicines. Paragon Biosciences anticipates innovating, investing in, and launching additional portfolio companies this year and next.

In his remarks at the College of Business Alumni Luncheon, Jeff Aronin said, “I’m thrilled to see the work that Northern and the business school are doing to innovate new entrepreneurial ideas.” Mr. Aronin added: “The education I received at the NIU College of Business gave me the skills to build businesses in a field that, while exceptionally challenging, creates significant good.”

Philanthropically, Mr. Aronin is also the founder of MATTER Chicago, a health care incubator whose network includes more than 220 health care startups and 70 partnerships with health systems, universities, life science companies, and insurance providers.

In December 2018, the NIU College of Business announced its own partnership with MATTER. This spring, NIU is providing students in the college’s Experiential Learning Center and Executive MBA class the opportunity to work with and consult with MATTER startups. Students and faculty now have direct access to the incubator’s extensive network, meeting space, events, and innovators.

Mr. Aronin is also active in the Chicagoland area through his philanthropic support of innovations in health care, education, and community-development. The Aronin Family Foundation is a catalyst for cutting edge approaches to learning, healthcare entrepreneurship, and neighborhood revitalization.

Mr. Aronin graduated from the NIU College of Business in 1989. Previously, he was recognized by NIU’s College of Business for receiving a 2016 Medallion for Entrepreneurship from the Beta Gamma Sigma International Business Honor Society.

About Paragon Biosciences:

Paragon is a life science innovator that invests in, builds, and advises bioscience companies. Our mission is to serve patients living with severe medical conditions which do not yet have adequate treatments. Paragon’s portfolio of independently-run bioscience companies focus on: biopharmaceuticals, AI-enabled life science products, and advanced treatments such as cell and gene therapies. We help people live longer, healthier lives. For more information, please visit: ParagonBioSci.com.

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