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John Friel Joins Blue Water Growth

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John P. Friel, former President and Chief Executive Officer of MEDRAD, INC., has joined Blue Water Growth, LLC as Director.  Mr. Friel will work on a variety of advanced technology projects, with a special focus on medical devices and biotechnology.

David Iwinski Jr., Managing Director of Blue Water Growth, said “John Friel is widely recognized for his corporate leadership and expertise.  We are proud to welcome an executive of his stature as a key member of our team.”

Mr. Friel was President and Chief Executive Officer of MEDRAD, INC. from 1998 through 2010.  He was a leading architect and prime mover of MEDRAD’s worldwide strategies for three decades, with particular emphasis on sales and marketing, international expansion, research and development, and organizational performance.  Under his leadership, MEDRAD achieved 15% average annual revenue growth, improved its profit margins, increased its international sales percentage of total revenues, expanded domestic manufacturing capacity three times, added manufacturing operations in Australia and China, and completed several acquisitions and joint ventures, both domestic and international.

With Mr. Friel at its helm, MEDRAD twice received the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, in 2003 and 2010.  The Baldrige Award is the only formal recognition for performance excellence of both public and private U. S. organizations given by the President of the United States.  He was twice named CEO of the Year by Pittsburgh Technology Council (2003 and 2006), and received a National Manufacturing Excellence Award from the Association of Manufacturing Excellence in 2008.

Prior to becoming MEDRAD’s CEO, Mr. Friel held positions there as Senior Vice President and General Manager and Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing.  Before joining  MEDRAD,  he was Vice President of Finance at Intec Systems and Senior Accountant with Deloitte (formerly Touche Ross).  He earned degrees at Pennsylvania State University and Tuft University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

Mr. Friel said, “I am excited to be joining the Blue Water Growth team.  This is the right time to capitalize on the influx of Chinese direct investment and to create significant opportunities for U. S. businesses to grow and create good jobs.”

John Friel currently serves on the Boards of Directors of several medical device companies, including NeuroKinetics, MediBeacon, Covue, Ortho-tag, and Wright Therapy Products. Mr. Friel is past chairman of the United Way of Allegheny County, the Allegheny Conference on Community Development’s Pittsburgh Regional Alliance, and the Pittsburgh Technology Council.  He currently serves on the advisory boards of the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Medical Innovation and the Hillman Cancer Center, and is also a trustee of the American Quality and Productivity Center and the Pittsburgh Public Theatre.

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