Our Impact

As Stanford Biodesign expands and evolves, our circle of impact grows exponentially, improving lives everywhere.

Stanford Biodesign is proud to have helped educate and empower:

  • 183 Innovation Fellows since 2001
  • 2,225 Stanford Students since 2002
  • 153 Global Fellows & Faculty since 2015
  • 74 Stanford Faculty since 2015

Stanford Biodesigners forge a variety of different paths after completing our programs. As one measure of impact, our fellows alone have helped more than 3.4 million patients with technologies they invented during their time with us at Stanford Biodesign. These individuals have continued to create and deliver new technologies in their professional careers through start-ups or established health technology companies, so the number of patients they’ve reached is actually much larger. Other alumni have gone on to launch new biodesign training programs at universities beyond Stanford or within their companies, expanding the pool of motivated health technology innovators much further. Still others continue to practice medicine while applying aspects of the biodesign innovation process to improve patient care. The net impact—and multiplier effect—of these outstanding trainees is clear.

For more information about the impact of our training programs and the career paths of some of our alumni, check out a recent journal article that discusses outcomes of the Stanford Biodesign Innovation Fellowship. To learn more about who's involved in the Stanford Biodesign community, visit our directory.

See Directory

Spotlight on the Stanford Biodesign Innovation Fellows

We actively track the career trajectories of our Innovation Fellows. While many alumni hold multiple positions, here’s a summary of what they’re up to in their primary roles:

Fellows Statistics
Fellows Statistics Circle Chart
  • 2% are unknown or have chosen pathways outside of healthcare
  • 5% work in the biotechnology or pharmaceutical sector
  • 31% continue to practice medicine
  • 62% have positions in the health technology sector

For those in the health technology sector:

  • 70% work for health tech companies ranging from start-ups to multinational corporations
  • 12% hold a non-clinical position within a university or research organization
  • 2% work in a health division of a high-technology or biotechnology company
  • 1% have chosen other health tech pathways
  • 12% are health technology advisors through a consulting company, law firm, or incubator
  • 3% work at investment firms

Check out a few examples of the different career paths our fellows take, and see how their impact spreads

Janene Fuerch, MDFellow 2016-17

  • Clinical Assistant Professor and Associate Director of Neonatal Resuscitation at Stanford Children’s Health
  • Assistant Director of Program Development for the UCSF-Stanford Pediatric Device Consortium
  • Assistant Director, Biodesign Faculty Fellowship
  • Co-founded women's health start-up Emme out of the fellowship in 2017
  • Acts as medical advisor to Biodesign start-up Novonate, as well as consulting medical director for Equalize Health (formerly D-Rev), where she guides clinical and medical strategy for the organization

“I've been able to focus my academic career on health tech innovation from a research and teaching perspective, as well as working with neonatal medtech companies in a variety of contexts.” – Janene Fuerch

Rush Bartlett, MBA, PhDFellow 2012-13

  • Vice President of Innovation, Lansinoh Laboratories
  • Launched four start-ups, including  two (Awair and Vynca) that stemmed from projects during the fellowship
  • As the Assistant Director, Corporate Innovation and Education for Stanford Biodesign, has trained 1,000 individuals at companies such as Abbott BD, Edwards Lifesciences, J&J, and WL Gore
  • Named on 17 issued and 20 pending medtech patents, 12 of which have been licensed for human testing or commercial development
  • Recognized on the Silicon Valley Business Journal’s “40 under 40” list in 2017

“Before learning about the Biodesign Innovation Fellowship I was likely going to be a full-time engineer in industry. Now I am on the executive leadership team of a global company and in charge of a $140M product range. I have also founded and advised multiple start-ups since completing the fellowship.” – Rush Bartlett

Michael Ackermann, PhDFellow 2010-11

  • Launched and became CEO of Oculeve out of the fellowship, which was acquired by Allergan for $125 million plus milestone payments
  • Chairman, Oyster Point Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which went public (OYST) in 2019
  • CEO, Presidio Medical, Inc.
  • Chairman, Tarsus Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
  • Acts as a project coach in the Biodesign Innovation graduate course and has formally trained more than 300 individuals in the biodesign innovation process
  • Named on 31 issued and 55 pending medtech patents, 26 of which have been licensed for human testing or commercial development

“If it were not for Biodesign, there is absolutely no way I would be in the leadership position that I am in today.” – Michael Ackermann

Nandan Lad, MD, PhDFellow 2007-08

  • Assistant Professor, Duke Neurosurgery
  • Established the Duke NeuroInnovations Program to teach the biodesign innovation process to others
  • Has formally trained 200 individuals, and has informally coached another 100
  • Founded three start-ups, one of which has been acquired
  • $3.5 million in disclosed funding raised
  • Named on 10 issued and five pending medtech patents, three of which have been licensed for human testing or commercial development

Marie Johnson, PhDFellow 2006-07

  • Founder and Chairman of the Board, AUM Cardiovascular
  • Established and directed the Fellows Program at the University of Minnesota’s Medical Devices Center
  • Has formally trained 22 individuals in the biodesign innovation process, and has informally coached another 52
  • Left University of Minnesota in 2011 to work full-time on AUM Cardiovascular, which has raised more than $15 million in funding and treated more than 2,500 patients to date
  • Named “Top 10 Medtech Innovator” by Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, 2014

Stephen Eichmann, MBAFellow 2006-07

  • Global Head, Industrial Design & Human Factors, J&J Medical Devices, Johnson & Johnson
  • Focuses on discovering and designing innovative, intuitive-to-use medical device solutions for J&J that have helped more than 3 million patients to date
  • Recognized with his J&J team with more than 57 international design industry awards
  • Co-founded a start-up out of the fellowship
  • Has formally trained more than 500 individuals in the biodesign innovation process, and has informally coached another 100+
  • Named on three issued and nine pending medtech patents, three of which have been licensed for human testing or commercial development 

“The fellowship cemented my interest in medical technology innovation. It was a great opportunity to learn from a fantastic group of serial entrepreneurs, innovators, and medtech professionals.” – Stephen Eichmann

Uday Kumar, MDFellow 2005-06

  • Founder, President, CEO, Element Science, which has raised more then $180M in disclosed funding to date
  • Launched iRhythm Technologies out of the fellowship, which went public (IRTC) in 2016
  • Has founded two additional medtech start-ups
  • Has formally trained more than 120 individuals in the biodesign innovation process
  • Named on 15 issued medtech patents, three of which have been licensed for human testing or commercial development

“The fellowship helped me realize my ability to identify needs and invent good solutions, which was key in my transition from a clinical to an entrepreneurial role.” – Uday Kumar

Todd Brinton, MDFellow 2004-05

  • Corporate Vice President, Advanced Technology, and Chief Scientific Officer, Edwards Lifesciences
  • Former Director, Innovation Fellowship, Stanford Biodesign
  • Clinical Associate Professor, Stanford Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Has formally trained more than 1,200 individuals in the biodesign innovation process
  • Co-founded three start-ups, including Shockwave Medical which went public (SWAV) in 2019
  • $280 million in funding raised
  • Named on five issued medtech patents

Asha Nayak, MD, PhD Fellow 2001-02

  • Vice President, Venture Investments, Johnson & Johnson Innovation
  • Former Global Medical Director, Health Strategy and Solutions, Intel Corporation
  • Provided medical and business strategic guidance to Intel programs exploring opportunities in China, India, and Brazil
  • Has formally trained 450 individuals in the biodesign innovation process
  • Named on 21 issued medtech patents, two of which have been licensed for human testing or commercial development

“The program helped me develop a broad understanding of the many inter-connected factors necessary to commercialize a medtech innovation successfully.” – Asha Nayak

Source: All statistics from the 2016 Jobs Report, 2016 Stanford Biodesign Alumni Survey, or other internal tracking initiatives.