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Gray Matter Podcast | Conversation with Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ: Building a Culture of Innovation



MRIGlobal’s Gray Matter podcast digs in with experts to discuss the science and innovations that are solving the world’s greatest challenges, and why this work matters in your life.

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Transcript — Conversation with Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ: Building a Culture of Innovation

00;00;00;26 – 00;00;19;07 – Dean Gray
I’m Dean Gray, Chief Operating Officer at MRIGlobal. And this is Gray Matter, the podcast, where we dig in with experts to discuss the science and innovations that are solving the world’s greatest challenges and why this work matters in your life.

00;00;19;07 – 00;01;35;00 – Dean Gray
All right, welcome, everyone, to another episode of Gray Matter and I’m Dean Gray. Very happy to be joining you all today. This is a very exciting episode that we have planned where we’ll be speaking to a friend and colleague, Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ who is MRIGlobal’s first Chief Innovation Officer. And we were really very excited to welcome her recently. She’s got a great, interesting background and professional experience with research and development companies, as well as startup research and development organizations. And she’s bringing that expertise to my global and I will say that in a very short amount of time, there’s a there’s a lot of excitement with our technical staff, a lot of excitement internally about what we’re able to look at with with fresh eyes in terms of our innovation practice and also our internal research and development, how we communicate with customers, organize internally. There’s just so much that’s going on that she’s a big part of. And anyway, Amy, it’s great to have you here today, and I’d love for it if you would introduce yourself, please.

00;01;36;05 – 00;01;54;22 Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Thank you, Dean. And thank you so much for this opportunity to speak with you today on this podcast. And I am honored and thrilled to be here on the podcast here at MRIGlobal and here back in Kansas City.

00;01;55;00 – 00;01;57;26 Dean Gray
Back in Kansas City.

00;01;57;26 – 00;04;14;05 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Exactly. So a little bit about myself is I think that was pretty telling for me to say back in Kansas City, I am from Missouri, grew up in southwest Missouri, educated all through Missouri public school system, a through Ph.D. from UMKC– Go ROOS and then moved on to postdocs moving to California with my husband back in oh my gosh 25 years ago, about 1997-1998 and in California did a postdoc in nonprofit. So have some nonprofit experience also focused on neuroscience predominantly but then got involved in industry as well, really working at the academic industry interface. I worked at SRI International for a while for several years, as a matter of fact, and quite a bit of the work that I did there was C.R.O. type work with industries and consulting for startups as well as NIH funding. And then I decided that I really wanted to flush out my understanding of drug development, and that got me really excited to go into the local biotech industry and Silicon Valley, and I had been involved in that for about a decade on all ends, from soup to nuts, from discovery research through IND to evaluation of potential companion diagnostics for clinical trial samples. So a broad based basis of experience from the nonprofit academic industry world. I like to to say that I have thick skin coming from Silicon Valley and coming from industry. But I think we both know it’s more like scar tissue.

00;04;14;05 – 00;04;56;21 – Dean Gray
You know, what kind of reception have you received so far? So you’ve spent a lot of time since you came in. And we and we talked before you, you know, before we created the position and everything. And we just had a lot of excitement around it then. But since you’ve come in, you have made an effort and well, you’ve been successful at outreach to, I think, everyone around the organization in person. Virtually where needed. But but really making sure that you’re getting this innovation in practice message and training rolled up, rolled out for the institute, you know, can you tell me about a little bit of the reception that you’ve received in some things that are making you excited?

00;04;57;03 – 00;06;11;02 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I think we’ve we’ve talked about this quite a bit, even from as you mentioned Dean, when we were even talking before I came, innovation as a process and thinking about innovation as a process. And what I found is that there is a hunger for innovation. There is a hunger to take the work that we do, the solutions that we create on mission for a safer, healthier, more sustainable world and bring these forward to the public. And this was very clear from employee engagement. Employee engagement asked for more innovation, more education around innovation processes. How do we do this? How do we take what we’ve built and bring it forward to help more people? Again, that’s that’s our highest level mission right there. And innovation is on mission. So I’ve received a wonderful reception from the folks in Kansas City and in Gaithersburg as well.

00;06;11;13 – 00;07;17;29 – Dean Gray
Yeah, I think they’ve really I think we’ve all really appreciated somebody coming in who that’s their that’s their main responsibility. That’s their job. Its innovation at the organization. And I want to go back to something that I heard previously that that I really like about the idea of innovation in practice. But there was a conversation we were having around business development, and this was a few years ago. And I remember somebody that we had on staff at the time said, you know, people are either they’re born into being a business development person or they’re not. And I remember thinking in the meeting, No, come on. That that’s not that. I don’t believe that for a second. And I think what I love about leadership or just continuous learning or innovation as far as this example goes, is that the idea that it can be learned? It’s not something that you’re well, you’re you’re born with it or you’re not you’re an innovator or you’re not an innovator. That’s not it. There are tools. And and those are those are practices. Again, the idea of innovation in practice, that’s what you’re bringing.

00;07;17;29 – 00;08;43;24 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Absolutely. There there needs to be a culture that reinforces innovation. And this involves leveraging talent, leveraging expertise. And it also means learning from your colleagues who do have that expertise. And this is something that, you know, we’ve talked about quite a bit at MRIGlobal in the last three months. Our innovation teams, how we can learn from each other, how we have B.D. people, business development people on our innovation team to help educate us as to what client need is, what scientific need is. And that also comes from the scientists at MRIGlobal, because these are the folks who are reading the papers who are getting the alerts from different biotech and tech agencies that highlight recent asset monetization, that highlight recent sales to the tech and pharma. And so people working
together like this on these teams, scientists with B.D., with legal support, everyone working together, this is not something that we’re born with. This is really learning from each other.

00;08;43;25 – 00;09;36;17 – Dean Gray
Yeah, I really like that example and with with the, that kind of team approach and something we’ve said again and again I think recently has been an organization is like an organism in how it has to function and grow. And we were just having a meeting not too long ago again about our proposals and thinking about velocity through pipeline and and utilization, all the things we think about in contract research. Right? And you can’t have those conversations without business development, technical, all of mission support, legal contracts, accounting, pricing. It only works when all of those folks are engaged together. And I think that’s one thing that you’ve really highlighted in the messaging is that innovation is also for everyone in the organization. It’s not a select few.

00;09;36;17 – 00;09;38;08 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
No, certainly not.

00;09;38;08 – 00;09;43;13 – Dean Gray
The entire it’s yeah. It’s the organization that can end up having a culture of innovation.

00;09;43;20 – 00;10;22;26 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Absolutely. And I know you had Dr. Curt Carlson on Gray Matter a couple of months ago and he talked about unmet need. Anyone can see an unmet need and bring it forward and form a constellation of people around to bring it forward, to figure out this is the unmet need. Okay,
who do I need to work with me to solve this problem? And let’s get in a room. Let’s get experts together and talk through this and come up with a novel approach, a novel and sustainable approach. I want to get that word in there.

00;10;22;27 – 00;12;15;16 – Dean Gray
Yeah, yeah, that’s good. That what I loved about well, what I still what I love about the approach too and what I think is it’s probably I don’t know if this would be unique to a, a research and development organization where you have a lot of, you know, you’ve got biologists, you’ve got chemists, you’ve got engineers that are working together, but there’s something about the collaborative environment that you also you’ve got to get used to mentally because no one wants to be wrong. We’ve we’ve got projects that we are raw and I’ll put those in quotation marks like in air quotes there, because we have projects that we run that are no fail projects, we absolutely cannot make a mistake on these projects. Or there are national security and defense consequences, you know, with our customers. So down to the the third decimal place, you know, there are there are no mistakes. And I think then when you take folks who have developed a career in a zero tolerance for mistake, kind of an atmosphere like that, where they have to be always thinking critically about what they’re doing and checking and double checking and triple checking then to put them in an environment where they’re also they’re going to be collaborative but then told, you know, that idea…here’s what would make it better if we change it like that. It can some. And what I’ve seen sometimes is it can be really exciting, but also it has the opportunity to shut some people down because they want to go, Oh, wait a minute, I don’t think I want to throw this out yet because I want to go think about it for about two more weeks and then I want to come back when it’s perfect. And that’s what we have to get over, which is that’s not how it works, that that’s not how multi brains together work to be able to come up with really, really unique and critical solutions.

00;12;15;16 – 00;12;40;26 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I agree with what you’re saying there. I think that element of risk can be daunting, challenging yet exciting. But this is where having good teammates come into play now. I don’t think there is anything wrong with thinking through what is the best experiment to do and.

00;12;41;13 – 00;12;44;00 – Dean Gray
All right, for the record, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that either.

00;12;44;25 – 00;13;40;18 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I know we it’s coming up with what’s the minimum viable experiment to show whether or not this will fail. So I think it’s tweaking that mindset a little bit that, well, we don’t want to fail, but what can we do to force a fail? In innovation that’s really critical, because if we if we fail, that’s okay. We but we want to fail early. So if we take that mindset and we tweak that mindset to, okay, what is the experiment that we do to disprove our hypothesis? And we do that by talking with other really smart people, and we move that forward and we get our answer yes. No, we either have proof of concept data and we can move forward or okay, this idea doesn’t work. Back to the drawing board.

00;13;41;02 – 00;13;43;20 – Dean Gray
That’s the idea of fail faster.

00;13;43;20 – 00;14;07;18 – Dean Gray
Fail faster, innovation in practice. Innovation as a process. And innovation takes iteration, and it may be okay. First experiment fails, but we learn something from that. And taking that back to the team and discussing that and moving it forward is what’s key. Or it may be this direction we have to scrap.

00;14;07;24 – 00;14;16;12 – Dean Gray
Do you think that fear of failure, you know, is that F word is a it’s a powerful one.

00;14;16;14 – 00;14;55;06 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
It’s definitely a tough one, especially when dealing with folks who are extremely accountable and not saying that in where I come from, for the past 25 years, Silicon Valley, people aren’t accountable. They are. Yet there is this understanding that it’s 10% of original ideas are going to move forward. When we were working at my previous company on the pipeline to build out the pipeline, we started off with, I’m wondering if I can even say the number of molecules that we started.

00;14;55;06 – 00;14;55;18 – Dean Gray
A lot.

00;14;55;24 – 00;15;19;28 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
A lot we started off with a lot and went down to five and it was because of best failure experiments. And I think having that mindset that not everything is going to work in and really supports innovation, but just get there quickly.

00;15;22;09 – 00;15;49;05 – Dean Gray
Do you mind speaking a little bit more about the lots of molecules to five molecules? I’m curious about, you know, as we’re thinking about groups. And so your background also in drug development and biotech without getting into an inappropriate amount of detail. Right. Right. And using your best judgment, I’d love to hear a little bit more about kind of the interaction between groups to winnow down.

00;15;49;05 – 00;15;51;17 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
That is an excellent point.

00;15;51;18 – 00;15;51;27 – Dean Gray

00;15;52;10 – 00;15;58;22 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
That is an excellent point. And you know, the corollary of fail faster is when.

00;15;58;22 – 00;15;59;28 – Dean Gray
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

00;16;00;06 – 00;16;02;01 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I want to point that out.

00;16;02;11 – 00;16;08;24 – Dean Gray
All right, hold on. I’m a steal that I’m going to write that down with attribution because it’s recorded. All right.

00;16;09;05 – 00;18;01;00 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Thank you. So with that, I had a great experience coming out of my second postdoc. Young, cocky, thirty-something went into industry, small startup working with about ten other folks who had state of the art, then state of the art expertize in their domains. And we all work together toward a goal and we helped to build the platform 20 years later, less than 20 years later, 15 years later, about six of us came together again in my former company. Again with that domain expertize. And it was really relying on each other to be experts and to provide feedback to each other and sit around the table, discern what are the experiments that we need to do, what are the pitfalls, what do we learn from this? And that’s really how we winnowed down. It was really that multidisciplinary effort, all of us working together, egos be damned. I think in me that maybe instilled from my Midwest upbringing that, you know, put your ego on the shelf. There are a lot of smart people out there kiddo, and there are. And I can learn from these people and this is this was the environment that I was in. This is the environment that I see at MRIGlobal. And what really attracted me to MRIGlobal and I think we really have that multidisciplinary expertize to drive these novel solutions, novel sustainable solutions forward faster.

00;18;01;08 – 00;18;35;13 – Dean Gray
Yeah, yeah. All right, let’s think about when you move back. Not too long ago, growing up in the Midwest, moved out to the coast, been out the coast for the last several years, and then coming back to the Midwest. What were some of your, I guess, expectations versus reality so far in what you’ve you’ve seen with coming back in and trying to tap into not just innovation in practice and development at MRIGlobal, but around the region in your experience so far.

00;18;35;16 – 00;19;12;12 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
What I have to say is, I have seen a dramatic advancement of the ecosystem in the Kansas City area, and I’m getting to know about the Gaithersburg area more within the Kansas City ecosystem. There are so many people who are excited to build the region, build technology,
biotech in the region, attract talent from outside, keep our talent here. And I’ve talked with Bio Kansas, bio Nexus KC, KC Rising, these.

00;19;12;19 – 00;19;13;10 – Dean Gray
Great folks.

00;19;13;10 – 00;20;23;06 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Great folks, Bio Kansas has an opportunity coming up for a C.R.O. symposium in April. Which MRIGlobal will be presenting. And what I really like about that is it provides an opportunity for all of us in the area, not just in Kansas City, but also in the surrounding area, to see how we can collaborate and work together. We talk a lot about MRIGlobal, about the genius IQ. When you have people come together from different domains sitting around the table, you know, one person individually may be a genius or close to a genius, but certainly when you have a lot of smart people around the table, you have that genius IQ effect. And I think we can say the same thing for Kansas City and for Gaithersburg, that when when we’re together and within the Kansas City ecosystem, I’ve seen this when we’re sitting around a table, the ideas just pop like popcorn and I really appreciate that. And again, it’s ego be damned culture and I’m really glad to see that hasn’t changed.

00;20;23;08 – 00;20;53;07 – Dean Gray
That’s great. That’s great. I think that’s one too that you have to keep building because you can see how it could be thrown off if it wasn’t if it wasn’t that I guess that mentality, you know, where where more minds together are greater than the single mind keeping an idea hidden until you know they can develop it, rather develop it with an entire team to be able to get something great faster for the organization.

00;20;53;27 – 00;21;25;18 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Absolutely. I think, you know, we have that goal at MRIGlobal to be an innovation hub for the area. KC has that goal to be an innovation hub for the area. And our missions are completely aligned on that. And what I’m finding is people reaching out, saying, hey, how can we collaborate? And I’m reaching out in the same fashion. And, you know, I’ve been here three months, but working toward it.

00;21;26;04 – 00;21;58;14 – Dean Gray
Well, what have you seen in your history, too? And with collaboration and innovation, what are things that really throw it off? What are what are some red flags to watch out for as we’re, you know, continuing not just developing this internally, but but also just being a better partner in the region. You know, and we are we’re talking back and forth between the Kansas City region and also in Gaithersburg, Maryland, where we have a another part of the organization, which is just a great laboratory. There and great, great group of staff.

00;21;58;25 – 00;22;31;26 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Phenomenal innovation. Yeah. Yeah. At Gaithersburg as well to. I think some some red flags toward innovation is, are rather, analysis paralysis. Right? And it’s I think it refers to what you were saying earlier. It’s the fear of risk. So spending so much time trying to figure out the perfect thing to do and that can be problematic.

00;22;31;26 – 00;22;33;00 – Dean Gray
Or being afraid of being wrong.

00;22;33;08 – 00;23;07;26 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Or being afraid of being wrong. I mean, my favorite thing about this job, I have to say, is that I get to say, I don’t know, at least twice a day because I’m learning about all of these different domains and I can’t be the expert. And I think learning from experts. So being open is a definite attribute to have to drive innovation. And the converse of that is, you know, being closed and being in a silo. So siloing is detrimental to innovation.

00;23;08;05 – 00;24;03;12 – Dean Gray
What about innovation versus intellectual property protection and development, too? So we’re talking about innovation in terms of it being open, collaborative, collegial, sharing ideas, right? And then your mind goes to, okay, but innovation can and should lead to development of intellectual property as well. That could lead to spinoff companies. It could be lead to licensing, it could lead to all sorts of other, you know, different types of solutions and that. How do you then kind of differentiate where, you know, it’s all part of the same. It’s all part of the same thing. They’re coexisting together, but they’re also it takes a slightly different mindset. You know, if you’re moving then into something that also, yeah, it’s innovative, it’s collaborative, but this is the point in which it needs to be protected and not discussed any further until.

00;24;03;20 – 00;24;05;06 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Before it hits the public domain.

00;24;05;07 – 00;24;06;19 – Dean Gray
Before it hits the public domain.

00;24;06;24 – 00;25;32;19 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Absolutely. Yeah. And making sure that those patent protections are in place are critical, especially in a science culture. You know, at the science culture, lots of ideas, papers to be published, presentations to be given and making sure that there are protections around those potential assets, meaning processes that are developed and products that are developed really important. And there are instances in which there are where there’s shared IP. Right? And I think having fulsome conversations upfront is is really critical on that when working together with collaborators and having those sorts of discussions about intellectual property rights and how that will move forward. Certainly, you know, I’m really excited about this. We were awarded patents recently and I received notification of this just yesterday, really excited about a patent for a formulation for a breast cancer compound. And that is with John White in our pharm side team leading our pharm side team. Yet that’s in collaboration with other individuals of—

00;25;33;00 – 00;25;44;17 – Dean Gray
John will be speaking he’ll be one of our speakers too at the Bio Kansas event, the CRO Symposium that you mentioned, John and Phil Belsky.

00;25;44;17 – 00;26;10;24 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Absolutely. I’m looking forward to to that event. We we also have in-house an in-house patent that was awarded recently. And that has to do with our mobile unit, our mobile laboratory unit. And I think there’s so much potential around that asset. I don’t think it’s been discussed on Gray Matter.

00;26;10;27 – 00;26;36;01 – Dean Gray
No. You know, we talked about mobile laboratories a couple of episodes ago and we wanted to have a special one that was for Mercury Lab. And so Joe Russell and Mercury Lab, what you’re talking about with that patent, we need to we’re going to have him on in the future to discuss that one. That’ll be a fun one. Being able to take the lab to the point of need and there’s a lot of good stories that will go along with that one.

00;26;36;11 – 00;27;03;23 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Oh, absolutely. And from okay. I’m going to say the C word from a commercialization standpoint, which I need to be thinking about as an Innovation Officer. That’s that’s certainly something that’s exciting for us. Lab space is a premium and especially on the coasts, you know, something like this, a portable lab with a small footprint.

00;27;04;04 – 00;27;17;06 – Dean Gray
Yeah. It’s the equivalent of of taking a laptop at home and working on a proposal. Well, let’s just take a laboratory, you know, to the site where you need it. You can work from home, you know, or work, you know, ideally work from the field. You know?

00;27;18;00 – 00;27;42;28 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Yeah. Yeah. Well, back in the old days, I think a lot of us may have had labs in our garage. Not speaking personally. Yeah, not not personal experience there, because that would not fare well within the regulatory world, but certainly having a smaller laboratory footprint is something that would behoove many, many organizations.

00;27;43;06 – 00;27;44;22 – Dean Gray
And schools as well.

00;27;44;22 – 00;27;45;10 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Oh, fantastic.

00;27;45;10 – 00;28;09;20 – Dean Gray
You think about early STEM education and just, you know, being able to almost think of a oh, like a library, a library truck, you know, and you think about a laboratory truck, you know, things that we’ve put together before, too, that are very similar to that, where you just have everything on wheels and be able to take it to the point of need. This can also be a great training tool.

00;28;09;23 – 00;28;57;09 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
What a great idea. And you see, this is innovation and process, folks. This is this is what it is, DEAN And I are having this conversation about this, and I hadn’t even thought about that at all yet. This is an avenue that we should sincerely explore because it’s completely on mission. And I think this is why many of us have chosen to work at MRIGlobal because we want to help society. Yeah, and if there was something that I was reading the other day about we we work hard to make our our parents proud, but maybe we should be focused on making our children proud. And I think this is really in line with that, Dean. I like the thought of utilizing this to help educate the next generation.

00;28;57;10 – 00;30;52;11 – Dean Gray
Yeah, I love that. So this struck me when you were talking about, again, back to the collaboration and kind of making that transition into collaboration, shared IP and commercialization. I would imagine that when you and I know this from, you know, our experience with working with customers who come to us and they have intellectual property, that that’s part of their project is to help develop this technology from an early TRL or technology readiness level to a later stage, you know, a more mature technology readiness level in prep for commercialization. And and part of the value statement that we’ve had depending on the contract has been your IP is your IP. You know, and I and I know that that’s been really attractive for certain customers. But there’s also that that that area that we’re always wanting to explore, which is your IP is your IP, and then our IP together is our IP that we develop as partners. And I think I would imagine, you know, from the legal perspective and other things that you’re looking into, that would be a a source of opportunity for sure. But then also a point of contention, I think depending on who you might be working with or wanting to collaborate with. Right. So you’ve seen that. I’m sure you’ve seen that earlier in your career where it’s been a barrier to to innovation.

00;30;52;11 – 00;32;25;03 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I have seen that in my career where particularly in Silicon Valley, when I was working at SRI International a nonprofit where it was a barrier. Yet what I found is that having a fulsome discussion upfront and explaining who’s bringing what value to the table is really critical. And folks typically are pretty fair. And in the instance in which someone is bringing their scientific skillset, scientific knowledge onto a project, it really enhances and it builds the the product that comes out of that project. Also a new process that’s better, that’s more efficient, that comes from the scientific knowledge that may not be within that scope of work that is given from the original contractor. You know, that sort of enhancement just really makes a better product and it’s better for everyone. And I think that people generally are fair. And if that value is pointed out, look, this is what we’re bringing to the table. We’re bringing our intellect and we’re letting you know what the pitfalls are and how can we help you de-risk. I think people are generally open to sharing intellectual property when they understand that this is going to make our product better.

00;32;25;09 – 00;32;51;00 – Dean Gray
Yeah, maybe. So describing it in terms that it’s not, it’s not a zero sum game. It can end up being okay. This is a better product that’s going to come from this collaboration and that could open up additional opportunities that hadn’t been considered before. That’s not a for one group to get something. The other group has to get less. It can be no, it could be more for everyone and a better solution for everyone.

00;32;51;00 – 00;33;19;02 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Absolutely. And again, it’s this thought of an innovation team and that genius IQ, having people from different groups approach the problem again, having, you know, the business people involved and thinking about what what other markets might be available. Again, case in point, that example that you just mentioned to me, you know, this is what comes this sort of value that comes from a fulsome discussion.

00;33;19;04 – 00;33;50;01 – Dean Gray
Yeah, yeah. You know, part of part of what you started doing when you came in was, was a listening tour and it was a listening tour. There are two parts of it listening tour with staff and then also it becomes a listening tour with clients. And if you don’t mind go into the reasoning, the reasoning behind that in the context of innovation in practice in the organization, like why why start there?

00;33;50;01 – 00;34;22;16 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
It’s all about the need, Dean. It’s all about the unmet need and really understanding what the client sees as the need, but then adding our expertize to that. Because people who work in the field, people who work in the arena are on top of the literature. They’re on top of the cutting edge, and that’s what we bring. And those are the kinds of problems that we want to solve. Those are the solutions we want to come up with, the cutting edge solutions. And that’s really what’s needed.

00;34;22;24 – 00;34;42;02 – Dean Gray
Yeah, you know, it reminds me of a conversation we had not too long ago with a new board member that we have, Bill Jeffrey, who said we always should be looking to. And I told him I was going to steal this quote too, but with attribution. So here it is with attribution. You got it. But also with always trying to look beyond the headlights of our customers.

00;34;42;03 – 00;34;43;00 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ

00;34;43;00 – 00;34;49;15 – Dean Gray
Beyond the headlights. What? What’s around the corner? What’s coming up? And that’s part of our responsibility.

00;34;49;17 – 00;34;55;13 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
That’s part of our responsibility, I would say, as global citizens and as scientists.

00;34;55;14 – 00;34;55;24 – Dean Gray

00;34;56;06 – 00;35;07;29 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
And not just scientists. People in the organization, business development, understanding where the market trends are can also point to need.

00;35;07;29 – 00;35;08;07 – Dean Gray

00;35;09;12 – 00;35;38;29 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
So and that’s just one example of that. But I completely agree with Bill Jeffrey’s comment there and also finding that sweet spot and having that expertize in in that sweet spot, where is their help really needed? And that’s part our where is our help really needed by the client. And that’s part of that listening tour to have with the client and helping them come up with the best possible solution.

00;35;39;08 – 00;35;42;24 – Dean Gray
Mm hmm. Yeah. So three months in…

00;35;43;08 – 00;35;43;29 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Three months in.

00;35;44;01 – 00;35;48;15 – Dean Gray
Three months in. What? Here we go, are you ready for this?

00;35;48;15 – 00;35;49;06 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I’m gearing up.

00;35;49;10 – 00;35;54;22 – Dean Gray
All right, gear up. Because I really want to know. I know you’re excited about a lot of things, but I want you to narrow down a little bit.

00;35;54;25 – 00;35;55;11 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Oh. That’s tough.

00;35;55;21 – 00;36;06;17 – Dean Gray
Yeah, I know. What are you most excited about? Yeah, I know. It’s not supposed to be easy. You (…) I should have asked you this in advance.

00;36;06;17 – 00;37;47;03 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
No, so two things. Okay. First, I’m a scientist. Yeah, right. I mean, when I introduce myself to folks, I say I’m a scientist. I don’t I don’t go with title. I don’t go with honorific. Scientist, period. So what am I excited about? Wow. Working with these folks across different domains and
learning from them. Scientist I’m a lifelong learner. That’s this is just indoctrinated in my brain. So there’s that along that line though it’s a corollary of that is taking assets that we already have and I really do see them as assets, these processes, these products and bringing them forward to the public. I can really get behind that. One of the most exciting days of my life was at the previous company when the compound that I had worked on from soup to nuts, meaning from discovery, through IND, to clinical trial, when we heard that we had patients respond and tumors shrink, it was a cancer immunology company. And I have to say I had worked thirty years for that. Thirty years to get to that point. Can you imagine being at a place where there are these solutions that are coming out from different arenas and getting to be part of the bellybutton to push that forward?

00;37;47;03 – 00;37;47;18 – Dean Gray

00;37;47;26 – 00;38;02;03 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
I mean, this kind of a dream job, I have to say, to move these assets forward and get these assets out to the public to help people. I would say, okay, I think you can hear from my voice. That’s probably my favorite part of the job.

00;38;02;15 – 00;38;16;15 – Dean Gray
That’s awesome. Yeah. I love that you know what? Let’s end it there. That’s fantastic. Really appreciate everything we’ve gone over. I just think this is just excellent information. This has been a lot of fun talking with you today.

00;38;16;23 – 00;38;20;22 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Same here, Dean. It’s always fun to talk to you. Thanks. Even in the hallway.

00;38;20;23 – 00;38;32;22- Dean Gray
Even in the hallway. Well, Amy, it has been great talking with you today. We appreciate what you’re bringing, MRIGlobal and the community and very much looking forward to more great things to come.

00;38;32;25 – 00;38;46;13 – Dr. Amy Manning-Boğ
Thank you, Dean. I really appreciate the opportunity to speak today and I’m thrilled to be at MRIGlobal and work with the team there and also to work with the communities and the ecosystems in Gaithersburg and Kansas City.

00;38;46;24 – 00;39;01;03 – Dean Gray
Right. Thank you. Thanks for joining us on Gray Matter. I’m Dean Gray and you can find me at Dean Gray on LinkedIn. Or to learn more about our work, visit MRIGlobal.org