Entrepreneurship at Cornell has announced that biotech leader Dr. Leonard S. Schleifer ’73 has been named Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year for 2019. He will be honored April 11-12 during Celebration, Entrepreneurship at Cornell’s annual conference in Ithaca.
The universitywide program gives the award annually to a Cornellian who exemplifies entrepreneurial achievement, community service and high ethical standards.
“The Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year honor is Cornell’s highest recognition for our entrepreneurial alumni. Regeneron is a powerhouse in biotech, and we are delighted that Dr. Schleifer has accepted the award,” said Zach Shulman ’87, J.D. ’90, director of Entrepreneurship at Cornell.
Schleifer, who majored in biological sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences with a concentration in neurobiology and behavior, founded Regeneron in 1988 and is currently its president, chief executive officer and a board member. He is also a licensed physician, certified in neurology by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.
Together with Dr. George Yancopoulos, founding scientist, president and chief scientific officer, Schleifer built Regeneron from a tiny startup into one of the world’s leading biotechnology companies. The company has had seven treatments approved by the Food and Drug Administration and 20 investigational medicines to help patients with eye disease, heart disease, allergic and inflammatory diseases, pain, cancer, infectious diseases and rare diseases.
Schleifer has been named repeatedly to Harvard Business Review’s list of best-performing CEOs in the world, as well as to Yale School of Management’s Legends in Leadership list, and he was honored as an E&Y Life Sciences Entrepreneur of the Year. Under his leadership, Regeneron has earned top honors as the best place to work in the annual Science magazine employer ranking and is consistently ranked among the most innovative companies by Forbes magazine.
Kathy Hovis is a writer for Entrepreneurship at Cornell.