Mr. Hank Plain is a general partner of Lightstone Ventures. He focuses on medical device investments out of the firm's Menlo Park office. Plain also serves as a general partner at Morgenthaler Ventures, which he joined in 2007 after more than 25 years in the life science industry.
Plain began his career in 1980 at Eli Lilly, where he worked for 12 years in various management positions. He left Lilly to become CEO of Perclose, where he led the company through a successful IPO and acquisition by Abbott Laboratories. Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, he co-founded eight medical device companies along with the team at The Foundry medical device incubator.
The reason I feel strongly about supporting the Naval Postgraduate School goes back to my first introduction to the students living here in Monterey County. The students are really the difference here. And you meet these mid-career professionals that have been identified because of their leadership and their intellect to come to the school to get their graduate master’s degree and PhDs. Once you meet them and you see their dedication and the impact that they're having on our country, you can't help but want to support them.
When you look at our challenges as a nation and in avoiding wars as well as winning wars, the investment in the Naval Postgraduate School is the best use of dollars. It's important for any civilian to understand the importance of national security. You don't have to go very far to see the news in the newspapers, on the Internet, or on national TV to understand the challenges that we face from our global competitors. The reality is that the only way we're going to maintain a technology advantage is through the investment in research and the collaboration between industry and our military to solve those problems.
As a civilian, I recognize the challenges that our military faces. The investment that the community can make in the school, whether it's a local community or the national community, can have an enormous impact on our ability to avoid wars as well as to fight and successfully win wars. The impact here with the combination of a world-class faculty and the students who bring their operational experiences from the field to bear on the problems that face our country is truly remarkable.
The reason that industry should invest in the Naval Postgraduate School goes back to our history. How we won World War II was through that cooperation between industry and the Department of Defense. The DOD wouldn't have been able to achieve what we achieved in World War II without the massive support of industry. For those of us who would like to avoid fighting future wars, it's going to be our ability to maintain an advantage over our adversaries.
The collaboration between industry partners and the school has proven to have a lasting impact not only on the military and our ability to fight and prevent wars, but also from an industry perspective. These partnerships can lead to sustainable relationships with the Department of Defense. What's crucial about the cooperation between our military and industry partners is that it builds lasting relationships for future collaboration. Additionally, our industry partners recognize the importance of these partnerships to their businesses as they look for ways to support not only the country but also focus on their own interests.