Dawn Barry is President & Co-Founder of LunaDNA, created by co-founders of the $40 billion DNA sequencing leader Illumina, which also hails from San Diego. LunaDNA incentivizes the sharing of health and DNA data for research by rewarding people for sharing the data they already own while contributing to medical research and discovery that saves lives.
What really sets LunaDNA apart is that people who share their data are able to get shares of ownership in the company, something that’s never been done before.
In the last year, Dawn co-founded LunaDNA, which is backed by Illumina Ventures, among other investors. Before cofounding LunaDNA, Dawn – who was was named San Diego Business Journal’s 2017 Business Woman of the Year – rose through the ranks at Illumina, from sales specialists to Vice President of Applied Genomics. There, she integrated market development strategies with product and business model innovation to accelerate the application of genomics in medicine and personal healthcare.
Hailing from rural Berlin, Connecticut, Dawn had humble beginnings as a carpenter’s daughter. She grew up surrounded by plants and animals, which sparked her interest in nature and biology. From an early age, she had the notion that if you take care of nature, it will, in return, take care of you.
Dawn, who studied biology at the University of Vermont, became interested in genetics via her fascination with the organization and blueprint nature of it. The idea of better understanding the blueprint of all living things, and being enabled to become more predictive with that information, was something that intrigued her early on.
Dawn began her post-grad career doing working for Michael Snyder, a renowned genomics professor at the Yale Genome Analysis Center in Connecticut, and then went on to work at a startup in New Haven called Genaissance, where she learned about pharmacogenomics. From there, she earned her MBA from the University of Connecticut, marrying both her passions of business and science.
Listen in as Dawn talks about her journey from humble beginnings in rural Connecticut to helping lead an innovative genetics trailblazer in San Diego.
Dawn enjoys the great offerings near the Solana Beach-based LunaDNA office including:
Tacos at Las Olas in Cardiff
Craft brew, specifically the Mosaic IPA, at Culture Brewing in Solana Beach (and Carruth Cellars for wine)
Coffee at Lofty Coffee in Solana Beach
Keep up with Dawn on social media:
Twitter – @DawnBarryDNA