Year in Review: Theia Healthcare 2020

To the Theia Community:

In 2020, a year that challenged us all on many fronts, we created Theia.

Theia is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that aims to inspire women to solve healthcare’s most pressing issues through innovation, entrepreneurship, and policy. In five short months, we have assembled a robust community of aspiring entrepreneurs and successful businesswomen in healthcare — each with a diverse set of perspectives, experiences, and learnings. Theia’s community is bound by the common goal of increasing representation and visibility of women as entrepreneurs and investors.

As the year draws to a close, we would like to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to our core team members, Mia Kim, Sabrina Tian, Ellie Park, Luiza Perez, Priya Kumar, Shilpa Ghatnekar, Amy Chen, Ameena Kapadia, and Jenny Mao, for their dedication to building Theia. We extend our thanks to our podcast guests, for sharing their personal journeys and advice within healthcare entrepreneurship and investing. Finally, we recognize the passion and engagement of our community members, many of whom aspire to innovate in healthcare — as providers, scientists, investors, and business leaders. Our collective efforts have led to several remarkable milestones for Theia.

From our very first podcast, Christine Yang, co-founder of Ride Health set the tone of our community, by reminding women that

We are a team — every success is a collective success for the industry as a whole, so we really need to stick it out for each other and know what we are up against.”

Kroma Health Kit — Group K Diagnostics product

Briana Wronko, founder and CEO of Group K Diagnostics, challenged misconceptions about the “student entrepreneur” through her own trajectory. She energized college and graduate students within Theia’s community by assuring that

“Just because you are young it does not mean that you don’t have something important worth sharing or that your voice is not valuable.”

Yet, Dr. Aimee Payne showed that even for well-established scientists, starting a venture is one of the most exhilarating opportunities one can have. She took us back to the early days of Cabaletta Bio, now a public life sciences company tackling B-cell mediated autoimmune disease.

“I am about to take on a 150% time job on top of my 150% time job. But how can you say no? It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity as a physician scientist, it’s a dream.”

With power comes responsibility — and as investor Barbara Schilberg offered advice to healthcare entrepreneurs, she also urged that

It is a fiduciary duty of the healthcare industry to consciously address healthcare disparities in their own micro way. This will take a combination of little efforts that will ultimately become one large effort and impact on our patients.”

Dr. Nimmi Ramanujam showing the Pocket Colposcope

Dr. Nimmi Ramanujam, co-founder of Calla Health, epitomized how innovation can be used to dismantle inequities, when she questioned

“Does it really have to be this way?” and began a journey to reimagine the century-old gynecological exam.

Daria Blumental presenting on Belkin Laser

Daria Blumenthal, CEO of Belkin Laser proved that you can have it all — run a global company and raise a family:

Surround yourself with people who believe in you, persist, and don’t give up on having a family, even a big one!”

And Ellen Su reminded us that in the midst of the excitement, challenges and responsibilities of being an innovator and leader in healthcare, we must take care of ourselves.

You can’t set yourself on fire to keep other people warm.”

We hope the lessons from our first podcasts inspire your 2021 goals, and know that Theia will be a champion for your venture!

All of the podcasts we released in 2020. Check them out on Spotify!

Offerings

We look forward to continuing to build Theia in 2021, and are excited to share new insights on venture creation, investing, mentorship, and networking with you. Until then, we wish you a happy holiday season and a very happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year!

Best,

Sumun Khetpal, Irene Park, Shabnam Eghbali

Theia co-founders

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Theia

Theia is a nonprofit dedicated to inspiring and empowering the next generation of entrepreneurs and investors in healthcare.