March 1, 2010

JHU, Montgomery County sign MOU to advance biosciences

Johns Hopkins President Ronald J. Daniels traveled to Montgomery County last week to sign a memorandum of understanding with the county reflecting the university’s and the county’s shared objectives of advancing the biosciences industry, higher education and work force development within the county.

“It is our common goal to advance scientific and health care translational research to benefit local and worldwide populations,” Daniels said. “We are extremely pleased to be entering into this memorandum of understanding with Montgomery County to affirm the university’s and the county’s shared science vision for the future.”

The memorandum established a shared commitment to forging long-lasting collaborative relationships among private industry, higher education institutions and government interests within the biosciences industry.

Isiah Leggett, county executive, said, “This MOU allows us to benefit from Johns Hopkins University’s knowledge, prestige, programs and relationships to ensure robust science and job creation within an innovation community, and furthers strategic moves Montgomery County has made over the past 30 years. Today,” he continued, “we are laying the foundation for a long-lasting partnership that will expand higher education [and] scientific research and provide good-paying job opportunities, all while advancing health and life sciences not just in Montgomery County but around the world.”

The memorandum supports a key component of the county’s recently unveiled Biosciences Strategy. It also supports the redevelopment of the Shady Grove Life Sciences Center, home of the Johns Hopkins University Montgomery County Campus and the university’s soon-to-be-developed Belward Research Campus, into a scientific hub with a balanced mix of education, research and private business.

The signing was attended by Scott Zeger, vice provost for research at Johns Hopkins; Nancy Floreen, president of the Montgomery County Council; council member Mike Knapp; Steve Silverman, director of the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development; and other public and private sector representatives.