It’s not often that you see a company in the STEM field composed entirely of women. But as of today, ImmunoChemistry Technologies is exactly that.
 
Sally Hed purchased the company from the only man on staff, retiring CEO and founder Brian Lee. Hed has been with the company for 20 years and most recently served as the vice president of marketings and sales.
 
ImmunoChemistry works with and sells to researchers in the biological sciences field, counting Harvard, Yale, Vanderbilt, the University of Minnesota and many cancer research institutes as customers. Among their products: A re-agent that can help detect and monitor apoptosis—the process by which cells naturally kill themselves—which is important in the study of diseases like cancer, HIV/AIDS and Alzheimer’s.
 
The company plays an important role in the research process, but much of their work is in the shadows.
 
“Most people will never hear of us unless they’re in the industry,” Hed said. But she said they’re in the background, helping contribute to cures for some of the most complex and devastating diseases.
 
The company currently employs eight (seven full-time, one part-time, plus Lee who will stay on as a contractor), all of whom are female. Hed describes that as a “happy accident"—especially given the gender gap in the STEM businesses—but added that women in particular seem to be good task managers.
 
“We choose the best and the brightest,” she said. “If someone can’t work independently, they can’t work here. I don’t have time to babysit people.”
 
Still, she stressed that ImmunoChemistry is an equal opportunity employer and that there’s a good chance men will join the ranks as the company grows.
 
ImmunoChemistry appears on the right track for growth: The privately held company has revenue between $1 million and $5 million, is mentioned in 1,500 scientific publications, has a network of 40 distributors and new products and work in the pipeline.
 
“We’re an active company in a pretty interesting niche,” Hed said. “We’ll keep quietly doing our thing, helping to solve cancer and other diseases.”

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