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Durdon named executive director of CNY Biotech Accelerator

Kathi Durdon named to CNYBAC post

Kathi Durdon has been named executive director of the CNY Biotech Accelerator at Upstate Medical University (CNYBAC).

Durdon has served as director of operations of the of the CNYBAC since 2016. She previously served as manager of clinical operations at Welch Allyn (2005-2015) and director of clinical trials at Upstate (1999-2005).

Durdon has led efforts in developing streamlined operations, supportive infrastructure and marketing strategies has led to full occupancy at the CNYBAC. Additional space at the facility is occupied by biotech clients working on commercialization efforts, the Department of Pathology Molecular Genetics Lab and a SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry research team working with growth chambers to develop blight resistance chestnut trees.

Durdon’s work was instrumental in the CNYBAC receiving NYS Certified Business Incubator status through Empire State Development. To enhance the capabilities of CNYBAC, Durdon created a competitive annual grant-funded Medical Device Innovation Challenge that has now graduated 10 early stage startup companies.

As executive director, Durdon will strengthen economic development partnerships to promote opportunities for Upstate researchers, graduates and clients housed at CNYBAC, and the innovation community dedicated to making an impact in the CNY region.

CNYBAC is owned and operated by Upstate Medical University—the region’s only academic medical center. CNYBAC clients gain access to Upstate clinical and basic science experts, graduate student interns (at a 50 percent reduced rate), and state-of-the-art CORE Research Facilities and equipment with technical assistance. CNYBAC also offers virtual occupancy for those companies who do not need to reside physically in the incubator space but would like access to expert partnerships, webcast events and mentorship.

Durdon serves as adjunct assistant professor at Upstate and serves on the boards of MedTech Business Incubator Association of NYS (BIANYS), where she also serves as treasurer. She is also a member of the NEXT Innovation Conference Committee, the Kingston Syracuse Pathway and Syracuse Innovation Connectors, all efforts to build partnerships that share strengths and create opportunities.

Durdon holds a master’s degree in business policy from SUNY Empire State College and a bachelor’s degree in English and anthropology from SUNY Potsdam.