pediatric medical deviceMINNEAPOLIS, Minn., June 22, 2011 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — DesignWise Medical (, a nonprofit pediatric medical device organization and recent runner-up in the Mosaic Social Entrepreneurs Cup competition, announced today that it has added four new members to its board of directors. With the addition of Gwenyth Fischer MD, James Davenport, Al Emola and Phil Kading, the DesignWise Medical board has grown to nine members, joining current board members Jodi Raus, Jim Hartman, Ann Johnson, Tom McGoldrick and Brad Slaker.

“DesignWise Medical is blazing a new path in social entrepreneurship as a non-profit medical device company and this can only be accomplished through the skills, experience and energy of our board of directors. The additions of Gwenyth, James, Al and Phil add to the breadth of experience and functional expertise of our board. I am more confident than ever that we will be successful in our efforts to bring needed products to children that will improve their health and quality of life,” said DesignWise Medical founder and CEO Brad Slaker.

One of the main activities of the board is the implementation of DesignWise Medical’s Charter Campaign, a sponsorship opportunity for individuals and organizations to provide financial support to DesignWise Medical and be permanently recognized as foundational partners. Individual project sponsorship opportunities also are available.

Dr. Fischer is a board certified pediatrician and 2010 Medical Device Center Innovation Fellow at the University of Minnesota, where she is completing a clinical fellowship in pediatric critical care. Fischer is a co-founder and Associate Director of Pediatric Innovation with the Minnesota Pediatric Devices Consortia, which will be actively developing and promoting pediatric specific technology starting in the fall of 2011. She received her bachelor’s degree at Vassar College in New York with a focus in cognitive sciences, and received her medical degree from Loyola University in Chicago. She completed a pediatric residency at Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth before returning to Minnesota.

James Davenport is a partner with KPMG LLP and serves as the firm’s healthcare leader in the Upper Midwest. He serves clients in the payer, provider and medical technology sectors and is responsible for KPMG’s service strategy and delivery to this market. Davenport also serves on KPMG’s national leadership team for the managed care sector and authors an annual Managed Care Industry report that is distributed nationally. In addition to his professional work in healthcare, Davenport is the proud father of a daughter who spent three months in the neonatal intensive care unit and was the beneficiary of a number of pediatric medical devices. He also serves as the vice-chair of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities and is a member of the Neonatal Experience Team at Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota.

Al Emola has been in the healthcare industry for over 30 years and has served as president and CEO of several companies, including StentTech, Vital Images and FlexMedics. Emola began his career in marketing at Bristol-Myers/Squibb followed by marketing, strategic planning and business development positions at American Hospital Supply Corporation and St. Jude Medical. He has served on the boards of Vital Images, StentTech, Medafor and Enpath Medical. He holds an MBA from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business and is currently consulting with medical device start-ups and turnarounds.

Phil Kading is the Client Strategy Director for OptumHealth’s Innovation Health Solutions group. Kading is responsible for delivering client performance reporting, client support, development of strategic client road maps, and driving innovative solutions in the health management solutions marketplace. Prior to OptumHealth, he worked for two years at OptumInsight as a Product Marketing Director, and six years at UnitedHealthCare in a combination of sales, business development and strategic marketing roles. Kading earned his BA and MBA from the University of St. Thomas and has been involved in health policy groups throughout the Minneapolis area and actively involved in the discussion around health reform strategies.

About DesignWise Medical:
DesignWise Medical is a unique, volunteer-based, nonprofit pediatric medical device organization that develops device-based solutions to children’s unmet medical needs. With its partners – pediatric clinicians, parents, sponsors, volunteers, students and technology companies – DesignWise Medical identifies, develops and delivers collaborative solutions to an under served population. The company is leveraging its unique business model to change the dynamics of the children’s medical device landscape by developing pediatric medical devices at a fraction of the cost of traditional product development.

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