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Wisconsin 275
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John Neis

Emerging Industries  |  Venture Capital
Managing director
Venture Investors  |  Madison

John Neis has been with Madison-based Venture Investors since 1985,
initially serving as the firm’s vice president and a director on its board and later becoming its managing director in 1997.

The venture capital firm provides seed, early-stage and growth capital for companies in the therapeutic, diagnostic, medical devices and digital health sectors.

Neis has served as a director on many of the firm’s portfolio companies. He currently sits on the boards of Cellectar BioSciences, Delphinus Medical Technologies and Health Scholars.

He joined the board of Third Wave Technologies, a diagnostics company that created tests to detect HPV virus, when it was a three-employee operation and served through its initial public offering. The company was later acquired by Hologic for $580 million. Neis also previously served on the board of TomoTherapy when the company had one employee and served through its public offering, which turned out to be the fourth largest health care IPO in the first decade of the 2000s. He’s also been a director on the boards of NimbleGen Systems, which was acquired by Roche for $272.5 million, and Inviragen, which was acquired by Takeda for up to $250 million.

Neis is past president of the Wisconsin Venture Capital Association board of directors and currently serves on the boards of the Wisconsin Technology Council, Morgridge Institute for Research, Weinert Applied Ventures in Entrepreneurship in the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Business, among other appointments.

Education: Bachelor’s, University of Utah; master’s, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Business

Hobby/passion: An avid bicyclist (5,000 miles in the past year) and cross-country skier.

Fun fact: He has completed 28 American Birkebeiners and three other Worldloppet races in Norway, Germany and Italy.

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