MADISON – Beginning with a pre-convention reception that will feature one of the nation’s leading biotech investors, Wisconsin attendees at the 2010 BIO International Convention in Chicago will have a number of opportunities to network with their counterparts from Minnesota and the Canadian province of Manitoba.

G. Steven Burrill, a Wisconsin native and founder of one of the nation’s leading life sciences investment firms, will speak at the “Connecting the Corridors” reception to be held Monday, May 3 in Chicago. Among Burrill’s latest projects is the Elk Run BioBusiness Center near Rochester, Minn.

Gov. Jim Doyle of Wisconsin, Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger are invited to speak at the reception. Other guests will include investors, tech leaders from the host state of Illinois, and trade representatives of other nations with a stake in medical biotechnology, biofuels, bioproducts and other bio-related sectors.

“The 2010 BIO International Convention provides an opportunity for increased collaboration within Wisconsin and the Midwest region,” said Jim Greenwood, president and CEO of BIO. “The growing life sciences industry within the I-Q Corridor represents a strong community of tech-based organizations, governments, research universities, investors and companies all working together to help heal, fuel and feed the world through biotechnology innovation.”

The reception is one of several exchanges on and off the convention floor that will focus attention on bioscience development in the I-Q Corridor, which extends from Chicago through Wisconsin to the Twin Cities region in Minnesota. It connects with what Manitoba calls the “Mid-Continent Knowledge Corridor,” which spans Canada and the United States.

Manitoba, Minnesota and Wisconsin have signed protocols in recent years that focus on research, technology transfer and commercialization exchanges in the biosciences sector and beyond.

“Biosciences are leading industries in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Manitoba, and there’s every reason to work together for growth when there are opportunities. The 2010 BIO International Convention is one such opportunity to connect,” added Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council.

Up to 20,000 people from more than two-dozen states and 40 countries are expected to attend the May 3-6 convention at Chicago’s McCormick Place. The convention, the world’s largest for the biotech sector, was last held in Chicago in 2006.

Wisconsin’s 600-square-foot pavilion on the BIO exhibition floor is adjacent to the Minnesota pavilion and near other Midwest state pavilions. Some three-dozen organizations and companies have already committed to being a part of the Wisconsin delegation. In addition, a number of Wisconsin companies will take part in BIO’s one-on-one partnering and presentation forums.

To become a pavilion or related event sponsor, contact Jodi Hoeser, national conference director for the Wisconsin Technology Council, at 608-442-7557 ext. 26., or

The law firm of Quarles and Brady LLP is the Wisconsin sponsor for the invitation-only “Connecting the Corridors” reception, along with the primary organizing groups, the Tech Council, Forward Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Department of Commerce. Other sponsors of the reception are: Positively Minnesota, the Chaska Biotech Center, Rochester Area Economic Development Inc. and the Province of Manitoba.