November 29, 2022
To the incredible UEL community:
I hope that all of you had a happy Thanksgiving! As we enter the holiday season, the time that we spend with
our families, our friends, and our communities becomes even more important.
It has been an incredible honor for me to work with the startups and companies that are part of the UEL
community. With the UEL board’s approval and support, I have chosen to step down from my role leading
University Enterprise Laboratories as of December 31, 2022. I have been working closely with the board and
with the UEL staff and team members as we transition the leadership of UEL, to look at UEL’s strategy for the
next 3-5 years, and to make sure that we continue to support you and meet your needs.
During my time at UEL, we have expanded our lab space, and now host nearly 60 companies. UEL joined
BARDA’s Accelerator Network in 2019. We co-host two cohorts of the gBETA Medtech accelerator each
year. UEL joined GAN / Morrow, a global accelerator network in 2020. We’ve worked with many of you to
navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, and the effect on business, supply chain, and mental and physical
health. Our companies have been finalists and winners in the Minnesota Cup, in the Walleye Tank, in the
BARDA Blue Knight program. We’ve celebrated Launch Minnesota and SBIR grants, seed and Series A
fundraising, and graduations of our startups. I am so impressed at the work that all of you do, and it has been
an honor to be part of your adventure.
Please look for more information to come next week, as we welcome a new Executive Director to UEL during
the week of December 5th. I’ll be working closely with this individual during the transition.
I’ll continue to follow your progress and that of UEL, and please know that you can reach out to me at any time via LinkedIn.
Thank you to all of you! I’m excited to see what comes next for UEL.
Life is change. Some of us handle it better than do others of us, but for everyone, change is an unknown, something to be navigated. When Diane says her departure and subsequent transition has UEL board’s approval and support, she and the board mean it.
With the guidance and expertise of Pollen Midwest, a strategic process and focus is underway to ensure UEL’s transition to new leadership is done with the best interests of you―UEL’s residents―and that of our broader community, in mind.
UEL’s intention is for everyone to feel safe and considered as we continue on to a robust future, and to that end, we are sharing the process that we’re going through, as we make this transition. UEL wants you understand, to be informed and to feel empowered through this change. The following takes you on the journey the UEL board and staff are taking.
Using Pollen’s approach and words, this is the story of our transition path:
“Learning from and with leaders who have been through a top executive transition reveals a bit more of the nuance behind the loss and hope underscoring these periods of organizational transformation, which at the core, are also periods of human transformation.”
“What would it look like to come out on the other side of that transition with the staff and board feeling more trusting of each other, more connected, more engaged?”
“A clear statement of intent for our “how” led us to some related priorities, all blossoming from that foundational understanding of what mattered most to us.”
Check back, for regular updates, and if you have any questions, please let us know firstname.lastname@example.org
At UEL, it’s not just about the space – it’s about the connections you make.