Leslie Wainwright, PhD

Chief Strategy Officer

Leslie is passionate about entrepreneurship, healthcare and innovation with her career spanning the disciplines of academic research, pharma/biotechnology and healthcare delivery. Leslie is a frequent speaker and facilitator on the future of healthcare, enabling technologies, disruptive innovation, growth strategies and emerging business models.

Professionally, she has been a founding executive of multiple cutting-edge healthcare startup companies. At AVIA, a healthcare-focused innovation accelerator, she currently functions as their Chief Strategy Officer. The company works at the intersection of innovation and entrepreneurship to help healthcare providers transform the services they deliver. In addition to AVIA, Leslie is a strategy designer with Business Models Inc. — a global consultancy that helps organizations better define their current business models and craft new ones to either keep pace or grow.

Prior to AVIA, Leslie served as a Senior Vice President for Sg2, a healthcare intelligence and consulting company. Importantly, she spent several years specifically addressing innovation and how complex organizations build their own sustainable innovation competencies.

Leslie’s scientific background is in infectious microbiology. She received her Ph.D. in microbiology at Northwestern University and she completed her postdoctoral research training at the University of Maryland’s Center for Vaccine Development.

Leslie serves on the faculty of the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. Leslie also serves on the Women’s Board of the Field Museum and is intensely involved in their Women in Science fund-raising and program development.