Nicole J. Walker


Healthcare Innovator | Board Director and Advisor | Venture Investor

Nicole has nearly 30 years of experience as both an operator and an investor within the healthcare space. Trained as a mechanical engineer, with experience working on the development, manufacturing, and marketing of life-saving devices at Guidant and Abbott, Nicole brings a broad company-building mindset when partnering with entrepreneurs and investors.

Most recently, Nicole was a Managing Partner with Arboretum Ventures with a particular interest in drug-device combinations, tech-enabled care delivery, and pharma/biotech adjacencies. Prior to that, Nicole worked for several years with Baird Capital, joining them from Abbott where she was a Founding Director of the Abbott Biotech Ventures investment team. Nicole strongly believes in the power of teams and in the importance of bringing diversity to leadership ranks when building effective organizations, some of her notable investments to date have included category-defining companies such as Arresto Biosciences (acquired), Elucent Medical, MI Biosciences (acquired), NeoChord, NeuMoDx Molecular (acquired), Strata Oncology, Cala Health, and Alley Therapeutics.

Currently, she is focused on being a formidable Senior Care Advocate for her aging parents and continuing to foster innovation through her board and advisory roles. Nicole holds an MBA and MS Operations (MMM) from the Kellogg School and the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University and a BS, Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University and has been recognized as one of the industry’s most active and engaged investors by “The Tech Crunch List 2020” and by Crain’s Chicago Business “Tech 50” for 2018 and 2016.

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