GE’s Innovation Expert Susan E. Seigal Joins Illumina’s Board of Directors

San-Diego based Illumina has announced that Susan E. Seigal has accepted a seat on the company’s Board of Directors. Seigal is Chief Innovation Officer with General Electric (GE) and CEO of GE Ventures. She currently oversees development and advancement of innovation for GE and built GE Ventures – they invest in strategic start-ups, starting new businesses, and bringing GE’s intellectual property to market.

“Sue is an exceptional innovator who brings significant scientific and operational experience to our board of directors,” said Francis deSouza, Illumina President and Chief Executive Officer. “We are excited to have her creativity and dedication to reimagining healthcare as Illumina continues its evolution into clinical markets.”

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Illumina was founded in 1998 by David Walt, Larry Bock, John Stuelpnagel, Anthony Czarnik and Mark Chee. While employed with the CW Group, a venture capital firm, Bock and Stuelpnagel learned about Dr. David Walt’s new technology that provided a way to process and analyze genetic data. With financial backing from the CW Group, they negotiated an exclusive license with Tufts University, where Walt’s lab was based, and created Illumina to commercialize their newly-branded BeadArray technology.

Since then, Illumina has grown their services and products primarily through several mergers and acquisitions. They operate in two segments, Core Illumina and Consolidated VIEs. They provide researchers with sequencing applications and arrays for a range of deoxyribonucleic acid and RNA analysis tools and the detection of known genetic markers on a single array. They also offer library preparation and sequencing kits to streamline workflow and accelerate analysis.

“As a pioneering technology leader, Illumina is advancing many markets, from life science research to clinical diagnostics to consumer genomics and beyond, expanding the fast growing yet early genomics economy,” said Ms. Siegel. “Most importantly, Illumina’s commitment to unlocking the power of [the] genome through its breakthrough technologies and business models places it squarely at the forefront of the transformation of human health. I am thrilled to join the board and eager to support its mission.”

Siegal brings more than thirty years of business and venture capital experience to her role on the board. Prior to her work with GE, she was a General Partner at Mohr Davidow Ventures where she led investment initiatives under the life sciences, personal medicine and digital health portfolio. Siegal also worked with Affymetrix as president and board member, guiding the company’s growth from an early-stage start-up to a multi-billion-dollar genomics company with a global presence. A celebrated business leader and visionary, Siegal has been named one of “34 Leaders Who Are Changing Health Care” by Fortune and one of “The 100 Most Influential Women in Silicon Valley” by Silicon Valley Business Journal.