PHILADELPHIA--(January 4, 2018) – The University City Science Center announced today that Stephen S. Tang, Ph.D., MBA, will step down as President & CEO to join OraSure Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: OSUR) as President & CEO. Tang has led the Science Center since February, 2008. It is expected that Dr. Tang will transition his Science Center management responsibilities during the first quarter and join OraSure on April 1, 2018.
“Over the past 10 years, Steve has led a strategic plan designed to transform the Science Center from a traditional real-estate focused research park to an innovation powerhouse, and, in the process, reconnected the Science Center to its original mission and shareholders,” says Board Chairman Craig R. Carnaroli. “During Steve’s tenure, the Science Center has launched new programs to support technology commercialization, strengthened partnerships with the region’s academic and research institutions and launched the largest campus expansion in our 55-year history. Together these initiatives have positioned the Science Center as a leading tech-based economic development organization in the Greater Philadelphia region. On behalf of the Science Center’s Board of Directors, I thank Steve for his dedicated leadership and service and wish him the best in the next chapter of his successful career.”
“It was an extremely difficult decision to leave the Science Center,” Tang says. “I’ve been privileged to work with a dedicated Board and lead a talented group of colleagues who are committed to the Science Center’s mission of inspiring and leading a diverse and inclusive community of innovation and entrepreneurship that nurtures and scales economic development through technology commercialization, business growth and civic engagement. I am excited about the Science Center’s future and momentum and believe the foundation has been laid for continued growth and success.”
During Tang’s tenure, the Science Center has made significant progress in its efforts to support innovative ideas and young companies. In 2009, the QED Proof-of-Concept funding program was launched to support and fund novel university technologies with market potential. Since inception, 10 technologies have been licensed, eight startups have been formed and 13 projects have leveraged over $22 million in follow-on funding. Following the success of QED, Phase 1 Ventures was implemented and has helped 22 startups advance technologies developed at 12 different academic and medical institutions. Together these companies have secured over $3 million in public and private funding. Finally, the Digital Health Accelerator was created to support health IT companies ready to transition from research and development to sales. Since 2014, the 20 participating companies have created more than 165 new jobs, generated $20+ million in new revenues, and raised nearly $24 million in follow-on investment.
Equally impressive has been the physical transformation of the Science Center’s University City based campus. Through a formalized partnership with Wexford Science & Technology, the Science Center’s campus has been rebranded as uCity Square and has expanded from 17 to 27 acres, with the potential of adding 4 million square feet of addition office, lab, and residential space. Under Tang’s leadership, the Science Center added 735,000 square feet to its legacy campus including the three buildings located at 3601, 3711 and 3737 Market Streets. 3601 Market is the first residential tower in uCity Square. A fourth building is currently under construction at 3675 Market Street and Boston-based Cambridge Innovation Center has been recruited as an anchor tenant. At 14 stories, 3675 Market will be the tallest commercial life science/biotech/research building in Philadelphia.
Tang has been a strong advocate for the importance of placemaking and the role of the Science Center as a connector. Following up on a CEO Council for Growth recommendation for the creation of the entrepreneurs’ clubhouse in our region, the Science Center established Quorum, which has become the convening ground for the region’s innovation ecosystem. Over the past six and half years, more than 60,000 entrepreneurs, scientists, investors and others have attended 1,000+ programs and events in Quorum. Tang also emphasized the importance of retaining young successful companies in the Greater Philadelphia region. The Science Center’s Port Business Incubator graduated five companies into their own dedicated office and lab spaces at uCity Square. They include Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, Halo Labs, Integral Molecular and Invisible Sentinel in 3711 Market Street and Pulsar Informatics in 3401 Market. Finally, the Science Center partnered with Drexel University to open ic@3401, the largest group of funded, early-stage tech companies in Philadelphia.
In addition to the accomplishments related to commercialization and physical expansion, Tang was also very committed to connecting the Science Center to the West Philadelphia community. During Tang’s tenure, the Science Center launched the nationally award-winning FirstHand program that introduces middle and high school students from underserved neighborhoods to STEAM subjects. In 2017 alone, FirstHand provided more than 4,200 hours STEM programming to 598 youth, families and teachers.
The Board of the Science Center expects to commence a search for Dr. Tang’s successor shortly in the new year. The Executive Committee of the Board has appointed Curtis M. Hess, Senior Vice President for Real Estate Operations, as interim President and CEO effective February 1, 2018.
About the Science Center
Located in the heart of uCity Square, the Science Center is a mission-driven nonprofit organization that catalyzes and connects innovation to entrepreneurship and technology commercialization. For 50+ years, the Science Center has supported startups, research, and economic development in the life sciences, healthcare, physical sciences, and emerging technology sectors. As a result, graduate firms and current residents of the Science Center’s incubator support one out of every 100 jobs in the Greater Philadelphia region and drive $13 billion in economic activity in the region annually. By providing resources and programming for any stage of a business’s lifecycle, the Science Center helps scientists, entrepreneurs and innovators take their concepts from idea to IPO – and beyond.
For more information about the Science Center, go to www.sciencecenter.org