Tanner Ash recently joined BioNTech as Senior Specialist, Quality Assurance Operations. Tanner was most recently a Supervisor at Ellume, a global diagnostics company that develops, manufactures, and commercializes the next generation of digitally enabled diagnostic products for healthcare professionals and consumers.

In addition to his work with Ellume, over the past decade Tanner has held positions with Kite, VaLogic, and Lonza.

BioBuzz caught up with Tanner to learn more about how he landed this new role and what he’s most excited about.

Reflect a bit on your career path up to this new position – how has your previous experiences at Lonza, VaLogic, Kite, etc. prepared you for this new role at BioNTech?

The one word that come to mind to me when thinking back on my journey so far in regards to preparedness would be community. I believe entirely that everyone is made uniquely to serve a purpose here and everyone deserves to feel accepted and listened to within whichever environment they are placed in. Throughout each organization I’ve been a part of, there have always been great challenges that have prepared me for more but the greatest challenges were never conquered alone.

What’s the story of how you landed this new position? What drove you to make the jump from Ellume?

It was a great honor to support the launch of Ellume’s premier US facility for diagnostics. There was a void that came out of stepping away from cell therapy for me – this was really the driver. My wife was diagnosed with cancer at a young age and although she is now cancer free, I don’t feel like my duty of fighting for the cure will ever be done. BioNTech holds some of the strongest minds in cell therapy (Kevin Winzer, Tyler Thompson, many others) that I have had the opportunity to work with in the past. This was an easy decision to make as I know this is one of the many organizations where magic is happening for cancer patients.

What are you most looking forward to in this new role? What impact are you hoping to have in the next 6 months to a year?

I am extremely excited to work on QA procedures that both follow regulation and make it easier to get treatments to patients both safely and at a faster rate. I know the QA team and QA leadership at BioNTech are a group of forward thinking and good willed professionals. I’m excited to make magic happen with them. Within a year, I am hoping to say that I had a positive impact on the organization as a whole, boosted morale, and most importantly helped every patient possible within that timeframe.

How do you think this role will challenge you and help you grow?

BioNTech is a truly innovative company. When you work for an organization that thinks outside of the box and leads, there is always a challenge to that. You have to think of solutions on the fly while knowing your solution may not be the best one. But the point is not to always have the best solution- it’s to support whoever on the team does. I’m looking forward to being challenged and growing with the rest of the team. Iron sharpens iron.

Connect with Tanner Ash on LinkedIn. And learn more about BioNTech.