The monthly President's Calls and BioTexas Cafe Series are THBI's signature member events. These discussions bring together THBI members, policy leaders, legislative staff and key agencies for insightful conversations. THBI invites expert speakers to cover a wide array of topics from latest life science advances and policy issues impacting Texas. 

During this the time of limited travel and social interaction, all BioTexas Cafe events will be presented as online webinars and conference calls. In the future, we expect to hold these events online and in-person throughout the state.

THBI President's Calls are member-only events. To learn how to access these events, or for sponsorship or participation opportunities, email Julia Perkins.


Check back for upcoming event information.


BioTexas Cafe: Research in Your Backyard

Sponsored by We Work For Health Texas

THBI and the We Work For Health Texas coalition host a discussion on the importance of clinical trials and research and development in advancing cures and treatments for patients, while also supporting the Texas economy. 

Since 2004, biopharmaceutical research companies have conducted, and continue to conduct, more than 17,000 clinical trials of new medicines in Texas in collaboration with clinical research centers, hospitals, and local research institutions. These clinical trials investigate some of Texas’ biggest health care challenges, including asthma, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and gastrointestinal diseases.

View Recorded Webinar
View Texas Research in Your Backyard Report

THBI Member Briefing: TRUE Grant Program

With special guests Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board

THBI partnered with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for a member-only briefing on the implementation of the Texas Reskilling and Upskilling through Education (TRUE) Program, the program’s opportunities and how it can benefit the life sciences in Texas.

During the last legislative session, S.B. 1102 created the TRUE program to award grants to lower division institutions of higher education or to local chambers of commerce, trade associations, and economic development corporations partnering with those institutions to support the creation, redesign, expansion, and delivery, as applicable, of workforce training programs and other qualifying education opportunities.  The education and training must lead to post-secondary industry certifications or other workforce credentials required for high demand occupations, must be developed and provided in consultation with employers hiring in those occupations, and must create pathways to employment. 

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View Presentation Slides

BioTexas Cafe: Access to Precision Medicine, Biomarkers
Sponsored by Amgen
In partnership with American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the U.S. It is also one of the costliest diseases to treat. Through advancements in research and technology, new, more cost effective targeted cancer therapies can be customized for a patient’s treatment based on factors such as genomic profile and physical environment through biomarker testing.

Research has shown biomarkers have potential to decrease treatment costs and improve patient survival and quality of life.  Despite evidence demonstrating the effectiveness of biomarker testing and targeted therapy, not all individuals benefit equitably from these advances. In a 2021 survey, 66% of oncology providers reported that insurance coverage for biomarker testing is a significant or moderate barrier to appropriate biomarker testing. There are also notable racial/ethnic, socioeconomic, and geographic disparities to accessing and utilizing of these advancements in care. These disparities in access and use of guideline-indicated biomarker testing and targeted therapy can potentially widen existing disparities in cancer survival. This discussion brings together industry representatives, patient advocates and a cancer healthcare provider to focus on biomarker testing education and how Texas policy makers can ensure all Texans have access to innovative treatments.

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BioTexas Cafe: Cardiovascular Education and Access to Treatment

Sponsored by Bristol Myers Squibb 

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, heart disease is the number one cause of death in Texas. The financial burden of heart disease and stroke is substantial. But there is good news. Prevention and treatment advances are helping patients live longer fuller lives. In 2021, vital research progressed on a variety of cardiovascular fronts such as kidney failure and obesity. Studies highlighted better ways to deliver care for stroke, heart failure and high blood pressure. And cutting-edge developments in the practice of precision medicine could improve the futures of old and young.

In recognition of American Heart Month, THBI and guest speakers discuss cardiovascular health prevention and treatment, what policies Texas can create to enable access to care, and the importance of supporting innovations in treatment for cardiovascular diseases. Guest Speakers include Senator Carol Alvarado, Texas Senate, Eduardo Sanchez, M.D., M.P.H., FAAFP, Chief Medical Officer for Prevention, American Heart Association, and Melvin Earl Klegerman, Ph.D., Professor, Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Health Science Center - Houston

View Recorded Webinar

BioTexas Cafe: 50th Anniversary of the War on Cancer

THBI, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network and Regarding Cancer partnered for a special presentation recognizing the 50th Anniversary of the War on Cancer. As part of a broader look at the progress made in these past five decades, the conversation included new developments in the fight against cancer – including the development of Multi-Cancer Early Detection (MCED) and the Multi-Cancer Early Detection Screening Coverage Act (H.R. 1946), authored by special guest speaker U.S. Congressman Jodey Arrington. 


Over the last 50 years, great strides have been made in the fight against cancer, but we still have a long way to go. New technologies, such as MCED, are game changers in the war against cancer and THBI, along with our partners in the cancer advocacy community, are eager to share why we consider these technologies crucial in reducing the burden of cancer among Texans.

View Recorded Webinar

American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network of Texas
The Promise of Precision Medicine

Biomarker testing is an important step to accessing precision medicine which includes targeted therapies that can lead to improved survivorship and better quality of life for cancer patients. 
Patients currently face limited and disparate access to biomarker testing. ACS CAN hosted a virtual education event to educate policymakers, partners and volunteers about biomarker testing and current barriers and lay groundwork to expand access to these vital tests. 

THBI proudly co-hosted this event. 
View the recording below. You will need to login to access the video and then click on "Archived Events" on the left.

View Recorded Webinar

THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Greg Hansch

THBI and partner patient groups have been participating in the We Work For Health Texas Virtual Fly-In throughout July, meeting with Texas Congressional Members on issues affecting the life science industry and patient access. This call features host special guest Greg Hansch, Executive Director of National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Texas.

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BioTexas Cafe: Heart Health Education
Sponsored by Bristol Myers Squibb

The discussion centered around policies relating to underserved areas, high prevalence of cardiovascular disease, the impact of COVID-19 and telemedicine. Guest speakers included: State Representative Nicole Collier, Nora Belcher and Maricela Wilson.

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THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Mike Mattoon

This month's special guest, Mike Mattoon is the Vice President of Federal Government Relations at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO). Now that we're more than 100 days in with the new administration, we were excited to hear Mike provide a federal policy update.

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THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Dana Harris

This month's special guest is Dana Harris, Vice President of Federal and State Advocacy at Austin Chamber. Dana provides a Texas 2050 Coalition legislative update.

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THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Amy Walker

This month's special guest, Amy Walker, Director of Infectious Diseases Policy at BIO, provides a COVID update.

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THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Khrystal K. Davis, JD

This month's special guest Khrystal K. Davis, JD, Founding President of Texas Rare Alliance provides an update with the 2021 Texas RARE priorities. 

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View Presentation Slides

Life Science Economic Development Forum
In partnership with DPR Construction
January 27, 2021

The forum was a closed, invite-only meeting with THBI’s Economic Development and Workforce Leadership Council, life science company executives and state economic development teams. The meeting provided a platform for Life Science employers to begin a conversation about how the life science industry, and regions across the state, can collaborate to drive economic growth in Texas by attracting Life Science research and manufacturing facilities and provide careers, opportunities and ideas centered on innovation.

To learn more about THBI’s Economic Development and Workforce Leadership Council, and how to access these events, email

View Meeting Agenda

BioTexas Cafe - Value in Innovation, Driving Patient Outcomes Through Scientific Advancements

Sponsored by Genentech, Novartis and Vertex
December 1, 2020

Join us for a policy discussion on the value of innovative genomic therapies, diagnostics and treatments, and alternative payment models. THBI's Policy Director Meredith Armstrong will lead this important conversation with guest speakers Tricia Fitzsimmons, Executive Director, Public Policy, Novartis, Scott McGoohan, JD, Senior Director, Government Affairs and Public Policy, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, and Casey O'Neill, Principal, Genentech.

THBI President's Calls are member-only events. To learn how to access these events, email

THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Mike Mattoon

This month's special guest Mike Mattoon, Vice President of Federal Government Relations at Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) joins us for a federal update as we head into the election. Mike shared with members what he is seeing as we are now one week away from very important federal elections, and shared an outlook on how the different outcomes could effect the life sciences industry. 

THBI President's Calls are member-only events. To learn how to access these events, email

BioTexas Cafe - The Promise of Personalized Medicine: CAR T-Cell Therapy

Sponsored by Bristol Myers Squibb
October 15, 2020

Special guest Dr. Michele Sharr McMahon, Director, Global Drug Development at Bristol Myers Squibb shares the work of her and her team on Novel cell-based therapies, such as CAR T, that use a person’s own cells are unlocking new potential in the fight against some of the most difficult-to-treat cancers.  As a company on the forefront of scientific innovation, Bristol Myers Squibb is evaluating new and next-generation cell therapies and investing in technology to ensure that our health care system continues to support the development and access for these personalized treatments for patients today, and for the future. 

How CAR T Works

THBI President's Call with Special Guest, Elliott Francis

Tom Kowalski, THBI's President and CEO,  speaks with Elliott M. Francis, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO). Elliott shares insight on his leadership role to drive change through the development and implementation of strategic diversity and inclusion initiatives in the biotechnology and life sciences industry, and within BIO. 

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BioTexas Cafe - A Discussion on COVID-19 Vaccines and Therapeutics 
Co-Hosted by Texas Association of Manufacturers 

In partnership with Texas Association of Manufacturers (TAM), Tom Kowalski, President and CEO of THBI, Tony Bennett, President and CEO of TAM, and our member companies provide an update on COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics and how companies produce and distribute these products.

Listen to Recorded Webinar

The Latest on COVID-19, A Town Hall Discussion
Sponsored by Amgen

This BioTexas Cafe featured speakers providing an update on the impact of COVID-19 and the latest efforts from the state and life sciences industry.  Guest speakers included Texas State Representative Oscar Longoria (HD 35), Vice Chair of the House Appropriations Committee, on the impact of COVID-19 on the Texas economy and state budget; Amy Walker, Director of Infectious Diseases Policy for Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) for an update on the biopharmaceutical industry and their member's efforts on COVID-19 vaccine and therapeutic development; and Elliott M. Levy, M.D., Senior Vice President of Research & Development Strategy & Operations at Amgen on the company's COVID-19 research and development progress. 

View Recorded Webinar
Download BIO Presentation Slides

THBI President's Call with Special Guest Wayne Roberts

Tom Kowalski, THBI's President and CEO,  speaks with Wayne Roberts, CEO of the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT). The discussion is focused on the impact of CPRIT, and how COVID-19 has effected CPRIT and the upcoming granting process.  Mr. Roberts also gives his forecast for the upcoming legislative session, with insight on the state budget. 

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THBI President's Call with Special Guests Tony Mitchell and Scott Newkirk

Meredith Armstrong, THBI's Policy Director, speaks with guests Tony Mitchell from CSL Behring and Scott Newkirk from CSL Plasma. The discussion focuses on the work CSL Behring is doing during COVID-19 and the importance of plasma donation.

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THBI President's Call with Special Guest Emma Schwartz

Tom Kowalski, THBI's President and CEO,  speaks with Emma Schwartz, President of the Medical Center of the Americas (MCA) Foundation. The discussion is focused on BIO El Paso-Juarez’s COVID-19 response, including ramping up critical PPE, as well as medical supply and device production on US-Mexico Border.

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View City of El Paso's Press Release

COVID-19 and the Important Role of Manufacturing

This discussion, lead by THBI and the Texas Association of Manufacturers (TAM), focused on the strength of the manufacturing industry during the pandemic and provide an overview of the important work Texas companies are doing to combat COVID-19.

Featured speakers:
- Tom Kowalski, President and CEO of THBI
- Tony Bennett, President and CEO of TAM
- Clement Lewin, Associate Vice President Head BARDA Office and NV Stakeholder Engagement at Sanofi
- Jeffrey Wade, Executive Vice President, Corporate and Administrative Affairs and CFO at Lexicon Pharmaceuticals

View Recorded Webinar

COVID-19 and the Importance of Policy on Public Health

This presentation was focused on the importance of public policy in fighting public health crises. 
Dr. Rodney Rohde, Professor and Chair for the Clinical Laboratory Science (CLS) Program in the College of Health Professions at Texas State University and Tom Kowalski, CEO of THBI discuss best practices policy leaders can learn from COVID-19 and how to be better prepared for the next virus. 

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THBI COVID-19 Webinar with Texas Biomedical Research Institute

Hear the latest COVID-19 research and development efforts being conducted at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute campus in San Antonio.  Dr. Larry Schlesinger, CEO and Dr. Joanne Turner, Vice President for Research will discuss the Institute’s unique role in the bioscience landscape and how its team of researchers are tackling the newest threat – COVID-19 – followed by a Q&A!

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View Recorded Webinar