Haworth College of Business News

Cultivating innovation through SMIC is topic of May Keystone breakfast

Dr. Robert DeWit, president and chief executive officer of the Southwest Michigan Innovation Center, will discuss the growth of the center, which provides support and assistance to nurture the formation, survival and growth of innovative, entrepreneurial, life science businesses. His talk begins at 8 a.m. Friday, May 25, in the Dean’s Conference Room of Schneider Hall, home of the Haworth College of Business. His presentation, “The Southwest Michigan Innovation Center: Cultivating Innovation,” is free and open to the public.

The event begins with breakfast at 7:30 a.m. Reservations are required and can be made by calling (269) 387-5050. Free parking is available in the nearby Fetzer Center parking lot.

DeWit earned a doctorate in toxicology from the University of Michigan and a bachelor of science degree from Calvin College. Upon receiving his doctorate, he joined Warner-Lambert/Parke Davis in Ann Arbor, Mich.  He later joined The Upjohn Company and served the legacy companies (Upjohn/Pharmacia/Pfizer) in a variety of roles until retiring from Pfizer in 2008 as the research and development site lead in Kalamazoo.  During his 25 years in the pharmaceutical industry, he served in a variety of roles in Kalamazoo, Japan and the United Kingdom.

In addition to his continuous association with drug safety activities, DeWit led a complete preclinical laboratory in Japan for two years, and spent a significant amount of time participating in global acquisition team work. He represented safety interests for consumer health care, manufacturing quality assurance teams and the animal health divisions of the various companies. He also spent time assisting with research and leadership functions in the United Kingdom while providing oversight to the completion of human health research in Kalamazoo.

After leaving Pfizer in 2008, DeWit was chosen to serve as the president and CEO of  SMIC, which has been in operation since 2003.

The Keystone Community Bank Breakfast Speaker Series is underwritten by Keystone Community Bank. The series provides an opportunity for the local community to hear top business leaders and WMU faculty, alumni and friends of the Haworth College of Business discuss current business-related topics.