Chris Lee earned his Ph.D. from the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University in 2012, then embarked on a successful entrepreneurial quest that has him currently positioned as chairman and CEO of Huxley Medical in Atlanta. And now that he has been selected to the Emory Alumni Association’s ’40 Under Forty,’ Lee has the distinction of having won the same honor at both institutions – he recently was one of 10 BME graduates named to the Georgia Tech Alumni Association’s inaugural 40 Under 40.
Every year, Emory’s Office of Alumni Engagement puts the spotlight on selected alumni across a variety of vocations for making a significant impact in business, research, leadership, public service and/or philanthropic endeavors. The 2020 winners were selected from hundreds of nominees, representing the very best in achievement and service across the diverse and influential Emory alumni community.
Lee, a first-generation Chinese American, says he inherited his entrepreneurial drive from his parents, whose journey to the United States was anything but easy. “Despite their struggles acclimating to a foreign country, both graduated near the top of their class in pharmacy school,” says Lee, who adds that his own success story actually started when he ignored his parents’ expectations, “and focused on the opportunities that excited me.”
Those opportunities have included starting Vertera (a medical device company that developed and patented a revolutionary technology that allows orthopedic implants to integrate directly into the body), launching Huxley Medical, and investing in several other companies.
Leveraging his professional success, he’s founded The Woodbridge Foundation, which supports other researchers starting their own healthcare companies. “It’s an opportunity for me to pay it back to the two institutions that helped me get where I am,” says Lee, who a member of the Coulter Department advisory board.