Selected Speeches

Illumina Ribbon-Cutting

Oct. 29, 2019
University of Maryland BioPark


Thank you, Jane. Good morning, everyone. It’s so great to be with you. I add my words of welcome to Illumina and to the entire team now based here in Baltimore. It’s also great to be joined by Illumina’s leaders who’ve been so dedicated to this East Coast Solutions Center. Ms. Safarians, Ms. Berry, thank you.

You know, at UMB, we’re deeply proud of Baltimore. We’re proud to be here. And when others see Baltimore’s potential—when others want to be here as much as we do—we just get excited.

Because I really do believe that once you’re here, you fall in love. And then you start telling the Baltimore story: how committed we are to innovation; how we have the nation’s very best research institutions; how our proximity to federal labs and agencies make the science we’re doing here the most important science in the world.

But what makes this city and state so extraordinary, I think, is that we’re still strivers. We’re still proving ourselves. Even though Maryland has one of the most highly educated workforces in America, even though we have one of the nation’s strongest innovation economies, we still work hard to make opportunity for everyone; we still value creativity; we make space for the doers and dreamers. Because we don’t believe in success unless everyone around us is succeeding too.

And so I hope that Illumina serves as our ambassador of sorts. And not just for this city, but for this extraordinary BioPark that, every day, leads in bioscience R&D. I hope visitors to Illumina will see how the BioPark companies interact with one another and with UMB—how they find intersections in their work and make opportunities to collaborate.

That collaboration is a big part of the BioPark story—and I hope it’s a story that spreads to your customers and employees. I hope it makes the BioPark a destination for more exciting companies like Illumina.

And, finally, I want to acknowledge that, in coming here, Illumina didn’t just choose Baltimore, and you didn’t just choose our BioPark. Illumina chose UMB. You chose our School of Medicine. You chose our world-renowned Institute for Genome Sciences. You signed onto the game-changing work we’re doing here at UMB—the work that Dr. Fraser and her team are doing every day. Claire, thank you for being here.

And so I hope we can develop even deeper partnerships with even bigger impact—and, together, rewrite what’s possible in genomic science. Thank you.


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