UAH alumnus envisioning pressing health issue solutions

Jim Hudson

UAH alumnus Jim Hudson is a founder of HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in Huntsville.

Michael Mercier | UAH

When HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology opened its doors in 2008, founders Jim Hudson (’87 MS, Biology) and Lonnie McMillian envisioned a place where scientists, entrepreneurs and educators would come together to solve some of the world’s most pressing health issues. Today, HudsonAlpha has over 30 associate companies, 16 faculty investigators and is one of the top sequencing centers in the nation.

As a scientist and businessman, Hudson’s investments have made profound impacts in the advancement of biotechnology, not only in Alabama but also throughout the world.

"I’m a scientist by nature, but I have a desire to take my education and use it in business. I continue to believe that biotechnology is second only to electronics in its potential to improve life for all of us."

In 1987, Hudson founded Research Genetics, which later became a biotech business icon. Research Genetics was a chief partner in the Human Genome Project. The capital from Research Genetics opened doors that helped biotech gain a foothold in Huntsville, leading to the creation of the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology.

"The HudsonAlpha model is based on bringing academic researchers, commercial companies and educational outreach together all under one roof."

What started as an idea has blossomed into a leading genomics research institute where scientists, educators and entrepreneurs work together to spark scientific discoveries, bring genomic medicine into clinical care, foster life sciences entrepreneurship and create a genomics-literate workforce and society.

"Lonnie and I seized a special moment in history at the completion of the first human genome sequence. It wasn't that long ago that we had this dream but it has grown and grown – beyond our expectations. It's wonderful."


Jim Steele


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