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Jeff Aronin Named Entrepreneurial Champion by Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center for 2015 Momentum Awards

Healthcare Entrepreneur and Visionary Jeff Aronin Will Be Honored at the Eighth Annual Momentum Awards Dinner to Benefit 1871 and Chicago’s Entrepreneurial Community

CHICAGO (SEPTEMBER 22, 2015) – The Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center announced today that healthcare entrepreneur Jeff Aronin will be honored for his outstanding work with Marathon Pharmaceuticals and his leadership in launching Chicago’s health technology incubator MATTER. Mr. Aronin will receive the Entrepreneurial Champion Award during the Eighth Annual Momentum Awards Dinner, which is produced by the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center for the benefit of 1871.

“It is fitting that Jeff Aronin will be honored as our Entrepreneurial Champion at this year’s Momentum Dinner,” said Jim O’Connor Jr., CEC board chair. “Jeff is an outstanding leader and strong corporate citizen who has been instrumental in helping to build out Chicago as an entrepreneurial hub. Through his work as CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals and co-chair of MATTER, Jeff is a driving force for innovation that improves patients’ lives.”

The Momentum Awards Dinner is the largest annual celebration of entrepreneurship in Chicago. More than 750 Chicago entrepreneurs, technologists, businesspeople and community leaders will gather at the Radisson Blu hotel on Thursday, October 8 to honor the leaders of the city’s entrepreneurial community. The Entrepreneurial Champion is one of four awards presented during the evening, including the Momentum Award and the Corporate Champion Award, which CEC bestows annually.

“I believe entrepreneurs have the potential to strengthen our community and change the world,” said Mr. Aronin. “1871 is a critical part of the entrepreneurial fabric of Chicago. It’s helping create a better future by supporting innovative new businesses, and I’m honored to be a part of that effort and to accept this year’s Entrepreneurial Champion Award.”

Mr. Aronin is the chairman and chief executive officer of Marathon Pharmaceuticals, a prescription pharmaceutical company that develops, manufactures and commercializes treatments for patients with rare diseases. He is also the chairman and chief executive officer of Paragon Pharmaceutical Capital, a privately-owned global investment firm that creates, builds and manages innovative pharmaceutical companies. Prior to Marathon, Mr. Aronin founded Ovation Pharmaceuticals. Under his leadership, Ovation became one of the world’s premier pharmaceutical companies developing drugs for rare diseases, and was sold in 2009.

In his capacity as chair of the BioScience Committee of ChicagoNEXT, Mr. Aronin was asked to spearhead development of MATTER, Chicago’s innovation hub for next-generation health technologies, which opened in February 2015.

Mr. Aronin is recognized in the community for his civic and philanthropic endeavors. He serves as a board member of Discover Financial Services, the Museum of Science and Industry, the executive committee of World Business Chicago, the executive committee of The Economic Club of Chicago, and the Commercial Club of Chicago. He supports patient advocacy and research at organizations such as the American Porphyria Foundation, Huntington’s Disease Society of America and the Pediatric Epilepsy Research Foundation.

Past winners of the Entrepreneurial Champion Award include J.B. Pritzker, Jack Sandner, Richard Melman, Brad Keywell and Eric Lefkofsky, Michael Ferro, and Tom Ricketts. Last year, Carol and Gordon Segal were honored for their work in the founding of Crate and Barrel and the legacy they have left throughout Chicago.

1871 and CEC will soon announce the Corporate Champion Award winner, as well as the Momentum Award semifinalists. The Momentum Award itself is given at the dinner and is not announced prior to its awarding.

Anyone interested in attending the Momentum Dinner can register at 1871 makes an effort to open up the dinner to entrepreneurs and facilitates strong interactions between some of our best entrepreneurs and the attendees of the dinner. The dinner is the premier fundraising event for technology in Chicago and has been a key part of CEC and 1871 celebrations since its inception.

Topics: News

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