21 May ‘Seize the Day’ award June 4 at ‘treps conference
Kevin Conroy, the chairman and chief executive officer of Madison-based Exact Sciences, will be honored during the June 4 Wisconsin Entrepreneurs’ Conference with the 17th annual Ken Hendricks Memorial “Seize the Day” award.
The award, which celebrates entrepreneurial leaders who have been crucial to Wisconsin’s economic growth, is named for the late Ken Hendricks, a Beloit businessman and 2006 “Seize the Day” award winner who died in an accident in late 2007.
Conroy was part of a small team that moved the nearly defunct Exact Sciences (NASDAQ: EXAS) from Boston to Madison in 2009, recognizing that Wisconsin offered the talent, research capacity and overall climate to turn around the company and build on some existing cancer-detection technology.
Conroy and Maneesh Arora, who later served as Exact’s chief operating officer, knew from previous stints at other Madison-based companies it would be possible to develop a non-invasive colorectal cancer test using a combination of DNA-based techniques.
Today, Cologuard is a leading non-invasive alternative to conventional colorectal cancer screening. Most recently, the precision oncology company pivoted to help provide COVID-19 testing supplies by converting laboratory space to that use.
The June 4 conference will be held on a virtual platform under the theme of Crossing the coronavirus chasm: Surviving and prospering during a ‘new normal’ for young companies. The “Seize the Day” presentation with remarks by Conroy will take place mid-day.