Using Venture Capital to Drive Cures for Type 1 Diabetes - Sean Doherty // Chairman of the JDRF T1D Fund


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In episode 34 of the Investing in Impact podcast, I speak with Sean Doherty, Chairman of the JDRF T1D Fund, on using a combination of venture capital and philanthropy to drive cures for type 1 diabetes (T1D) by catalyzing private investment.

Sean Doherty led the concept-creation, design and capital financing of the Fund, and he has driven its strategy since inception. Sean retired at the end of 2018 from his role as Managing Director of Bain Capital, LP, a private global investment firm which he joined in 2005 as the firm’s first general counsel. In this role he built a pioneering and industry-leading deal lawyer and risk management group during a time of rapid growth and institutionalization of the alternative asset industry. He also had a diverse operational and constituency management role at Bain Capital, where he led crisis management, press and external communications, government relations, branding and philanthropic initiatives and was deeply involved in governance matters and capital raising. Earlier in his career he worked at Ropes & Gray LLP and was a law clerk to a federal district judge in Boston. Prior to law school, he was a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, in which he served on a Middle East Force frigate from 1990-94.

Sean and his wife, Suzy, have been involved with JDRF since 2002 when their son Finn was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 2. He served on the JDRF International Board and its Executive Committee from 2016 to 2019 following more than a decade of service on the JDRF New England Chapter Board, including two years as its President.

He received a J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School and a B.A. magna cum laude in Government from Harvard College. He serves on the boards of directors of two companies with T1D programs and is also a member of the board of trustees of Thayer Academy in Braintree, MA.

About The JDRF T1D Fund

A philanthropic vehicle run as a venture capital fund. Launched in December 2016, the T1D Fund was established to create a new investment market aimed at delivering solutions to people living with or at risk of developing T1D.

They are now one of the largest disease-focused venture philanthropy funds in the world, with $100m in assets and our philanthropic dollars are spurring private investment to ultimately secure the billions we need to generate cures.

The portfolio consists of therapeutics, diagnostics, devices and vaccines, with an emphasis on cure-oriented therapies.

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56 episodes