BioAccel’s MaryAnn Guerra to Serve on the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker Selects MaryAnn Guerra to Serve on the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship

MaryAnn Guerra headshot

MaryAnn Guerra
President and CEO of BioAccel


WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker has named MaryAnn Guerra as one of the 27 individuals who have been selected to serve on the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE). The Council will operate as an independent entity within the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE), which is housed within the U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA). NACIE members will advise the Secretary of Commerce on issues related to accelerating innovation, expanding entrepreneurship, and developing a globally competitive workforce.


“Through our ‘Open for Business Agenda,’ the Commerce Department has prioritized supporting entrepreneurs and helping foster innovation, which are key drivers of America’s global competitiveness,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The new NACIE members are a diverse and dynamic group of successful entrepreneurs, innovators, and investors, as well as leaders from nonprofit organizations and academia. I appreciate their willingness to serve our nation on these important issues, and I look forward to working with the Council to advance innovation and cultivate a skilled workforce for today’s 21st century jobs.”

Recently named as one of Arizona’s 50 Most Influential Women Arizona business leaders, Guerra was chosen as one of 260 applicants reviewed as part of a competitive selection process. Currently, Guerra serves as the Chairman of the Board, CEO, and co-founder of BioAccel and has more than 30 years of experience in business, health, cancer technology and genomics research management. She is known for creating novel programs to accelerate the transfer of technology from the lab into new business opportunities and ultimately life-saving healthcare solutions that meet today’s most urgent needs. Under the leadership of Guerra, BioAccel has assisted successfully launching 12 new biomedical device companies with products close to commercial availability. Guerra also established as Operating Director of the first ever BioAccelerator Fund that is dedicated to providing downstream investment support for BioAccel portfolio companies.

“I am honored to have been selected for this prestigious appointment and to be able to participating in contributing to the National Agenda for innovation and entrepreneurship,” said Guerra.  “I believe the federal government plays a critical role in creating programs that will accelerate the commercialization of important research outcomes that also have the potential for strong economic impact as well as a healthier community”

Sharon Harper, BioAccel Board member stated about Guerra, “Entrepreneurship and innovation are not only her passion, but also her daily life.” BioAccel has taken on one of the most difficult problems facing the technology industry, the creation of sustainable new technology-based companies and that makes her a – perfect selection for this important advisory council.”

Guerra’s other noted accomplishments include the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce 2013 Woman of the Year and Arizona Business Magazine’s 2013 “Fifteen” Women to Watch. – She also is a Board member of Planned Parenthood of Arizona and the Mollen Foundation as well as a Commissioner of the Arizona Skill Standard Commission as well as many other board seats. Guerra holds an undergraduate degree from The Ohio State University and an MBA from George Washington University in Science, Innovation and Commercialization.

NACIE’s overarching focus is recommending transformational policies to the Secretary that will help U.S. communities, businesses, and the workforce become more globally competitive. NACIE members, who will serve a two year term, were chosen based on their ability to carry out the objectives of the Council. All of the appointees have demonstrated expertise and experience in the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship, and workforce skills. In reviewing the applications, the Secretary sought individuals who have been nationally recognized leaders in a variety of fields in order to create a balanced point of view, including a representation of different demographics, organization size, industry sector, and geographic regions.  NACIE’s work will be organized into subcommittees around three main focus areas: entrepreneurship, innovation, and job-driven skills training. The full Council will convene four times each year beginning with the first meeting in December 2014. To learn more about NACIE, visit


About BioAccel

BioAccel is a unique, fully independent, non-profit organization that creates healthy and prosperous communities by promoting the seamless intersection of market need, innovation and investment through 3 strategic priorities: improved clinical outcomes, economic development and education. For more information, visit –


Posted in AZBio News.