Message from CIT President & CEO Pete Jobse
One of my favorite pastimes is watching good movies. Recently, I had the pleasure of watching “Moneyball,” the story of Oakland A’s General Manager Billy Beane, who revolutionized baseball with his groundbreaking method of building teams. Beane had to innovate. He couldn’t compete in a league with wealthier teams that could recruit star players with high salaries, so Beane used a new analytical tool called “sabermetrics” to recruit players that other teams often overlooked, and in doing so, built winning teams. Billy Beane was an innovator, and his story is a lesson for anyone who wants to succeed in today’s economy. With the global economic challenges still before us, we have to explore new ways to create an ecosystem that allows entrepreneurs to build companies and create jobs. I talk a lot about innovation. It is my passion. As I was drafting this message, I found a quote about innovation by noted economist Theodore Levitt, who popularized the term “globalization.” He said, “Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things.” I thought that distinction described very well what we do at CIT. We champion innovation. We do new things.
Since 1985, we have made innovation happen by creating a collaborative ecosystem comprised of industry, universities and government leaders who commercialize research, build new companies and create new jobs. We develop new ways to manage systems and assist people across the Commonwealth in gaining the basic and necessary tools to build innovative communities that will compete today and in the future. While we are proud of all of our accomplishments over the last 26 years, we take great pleasure in the work we have done this past year. Working with the McDonnell Administration and the General Assembly, we succeeded in garnering additional reforms and investments that strengthen our innovation ecosystem. These initiatives help us accelerate the efforts we have made to plug the innovation gaps in commercialization and seed-stage funding not currently being filled alone by the private sector. While we applaud efforts to recruit new, established companies to Virginia, we also believe that we need to help researchers and entrepreneurs grow them organically here if we want to successfully build a new innovation economy in the Commonwealth. We have also carried out other initiatives in cyber security, education reforms, modeling and simulation, electronic medical records and commercial space flight that will strengthen Virginia’s position in the new innovation economy. I hope you enjoy visiting our website. When you leave, if you have not done so, I encourage you to take the time to watch “Moneyball.” Not only is it an entertaining movie, but it will inspire you to think differently, to reach high and to innovate.