Colorado BioScience Association
Colorado BioScience Association

Biotech Executive John Collar Named Executive Director of the Colorado BioScience Association, Effective December 8

Following an extensive national search, John Collar, Chief Operating Officer of Westminster-based Matrilinex, has been named Executive Director of the Colorado BioScience Association (CBSA), effective December 8, 2008. A seasoned senior executive, Collar has a background of solid corporate experience with a proven track record for strategic planning, managing to metrics, and c-level operational responsibilities. He succeeds Denise Brown, Founding Executive Director of CBSA, who retired Sept 30.

Denver, CO, November 24, 2008 --( John Collar, Chief Operating Officer of Westminster-based Matrilinex, a start up mitochondrial DNA testing lab company, has been named Executive Director of the Colorado BioScience Association (CBSA), effective December 8, 2008. The announcement is made by Jack Wheeler, CBSA Board Chair, who says Collar has been appointed Executive Director by the CBSA board following an extensive national search process, coordinated by a respected search firm and managed by a subcommittee of the board.

“We are very pleased that we were able to attract a group of extremely talented executives to our interviewing process. Of the three candidates who made it to final selection, John Collar stood out above the rest. He was here in Colorado employed at a biotech start up, and the national search process simply proved to our search committee and the board of directors that a local executive was ready to lead the association,” Wheeler says.

Prior to Matrilinex, Collar was Chief Operating Officer for Neuromark, Inc., an early stage Company in the genetic diagnostic field for psychiatric disorders; Corporate Vice President for Octagon Systems, a Colorado-based company serving the embedded computer systems markets; and served as President of Industrial Laboratories, a privately held company in the food, nutraceutical, and drug testing industry. In addition he spent three years as Director of Operations for publicly held Amrion, Inc. (a subsidiary of Whole Foods) and twelve years as Director of International Operations for Baxter.

"I'm very excited to join the CBSA in this leadership role and especially looking forward to building on the many positive achievements and programs that Denise Brown, the CBSA staff, board and member volunteers have made happen over the past six years for Colorado's bioscience industry,” Collar says. “This position, along with my background in large and small businesses in pharmaceuticals, biotech and medical devices, provides a very unique opportunity for both me and the Association. As we move forward through these challenging times, we will continue to work diligently to expand the bioscience industry in Colorado through a broad spectrum of existing and new programs."

Collar received a Masters of Business Administration, Marketing minor, from Barry University, Miami Shores, FL, in 1990. He earned his Packaging Engineering undergraduate degree from Michigan State University in 1979. Collar has served as Chairman of the Board for the Colorado Association of Manufacturing and Technology; and is a board member for the City of Westminster Business Advisory Group, MSU Alumni Association and The Butterfly Pavilion. He is a former board member of Octagon Systems Corp and the PC/104 consortium.

In addition, Collar holds professional certification in Packaging Engineering & Materials Management and is past chairman of Professional certifications for the International Society of Packaging & Handling Engineers. He also holds his pilots license, multi-engine rated, and U.S. Coast Guard Captain's license, Master's rating.

Collar succeeds Denise Brown, Founding Executive Director of the CBSA, who retired from the association in September. Brown was honored this year with the CBSA’s special Chairman’s Award for taking the CBSA organization from 20 to 400 members during her tenure. Her awareness of the bioscience industry’s needs and her ability to advocate on behalf of it has made CBSA the preeminent industry organization in Colorado, as well as an organization that is held up as a model across the country.

“Christine Shapard has served as the CBSA’s Interim Executive Director since Brown’s departure and will do so until Collar's arrival December 8. At that time, Shapard will resume her former title of Deputy Director,” Wheeler explains. “We are very fortunate to have had Shapard at the helm during these past few months, particularly in overseeing one of the most successful BioWest Conferences to date, while concurrently managing the Association’s numerous other programs and activities.”

About Colorado BioScience Association

CBSA is a not-for-profit corporation providing services and support for Colorado’s growing biosciences industry. With more than 400 members, the CBSA actively works to promote the growth of the industry by advocating for a better business environment, by promoting programs that grow the state’s bioscience workforce, by fighting for policies that support a strong bioscience industry in the state and by speaking with a single voice on behalf of the companies in the state. For more information, visit



Jack Wheeler, Colorado BioScience Association Board Chair, 303-339-1420 or

Maggie Chamberlin Holben, APR - Absolutely PR -- - Colorado BioScience Association Board Member and Media Relations Consultant, 303-984-9801,

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