By Emily Reyst
Popovits (BA Business ’80) specializes in two ‘B’s: business and biotech. After graduating from MSU, she began her career at American Critical Care as a division manager, then climbed to vice president of sales and marketing at Genentech, a biotech company that commercializes medicines, for 15 years. Her passion and experience in health care and innovation led her to Genomic Health, Inc., a company dedicated to providing cancer treatments by focusing on genomics-based diagnostics. In 2002, she joined as President and COO and is now chairman, president, and CEO. Her innovation and leadership continues to transform the healthcare industry and appropriately, she plans to focus her speech on innovation and leadership.
Popovits’ career also has a personal side. She focuses on improving the lives of those battling cancer through personalized treatments. Her dedication to the field has been recognized with numerous honors. From 2006-12 she was named by the San Francisco Business Times as one of the Most Influential Women in the Bay Area.
The annual Sylvan T. Warrington Lecture in Ethics and Leadership was established with an endowment in the Broad College by MSU alumni Edward R. James (BA Economics ’56) and Jeannie Warrington James (BA Human Ecology ’57) to honor her father, Sylvan T. Warrington. An agricultural and food industry innovator, Warrington was known for his Midwestern values and respect for land-grant education.