Hasler plays key role in Purdue’s Indianapolis campus launch effort

INDIANAPOLIS — Daniel J. Hasler, former Indiana Secretary of Commerce and Eli Lilly & Company executive who also held several high-level positions for Purdue University and the Purdue Research Foundation, will return to the university to help at the launch of Purdue University in Indianapolis.

Purdue Chairman Mitch Daniels said Hasler combines a unique background as an innovative leader in higher education with deep business expertise and an understanding of economic development and entrepreneurship — critical ingredients needed to forge key relationships and strong industry partnerships that will grow Purdue University in Indianapolis and equip the next generation of Boilermakers for successful technology careers in the Circle City.

“Once again, Dan has agreed to reinvigorate his Purdue career by guiding one of the most significant efforts in our university’s 153-year history: the launch of Purdue University in Indianapolis,” Daniels said. “Dan knows Purdue and he knows Indianapolis, both intimately. It includes the history of Boilermaker and the important role we play as a state land-grant university. We’re in great hands with Dan on the team to advance Purdue University’s mission at Indianapolis, accelerate our state’s STEM talent pipeline, and set the stage for Indianapolis to become a top 10 technology centers.

Purdue and Indiana University announced plans in August to transform Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, a joint venture between Purdue and IU known as IUPUI, into separate university organizations, each governing its own programs. Purdue will expand its flagship West Lafayette operations with a next-generation metro campus in Indianapolis that leverages its academic strengths and research portfolio while expanding its collaborative efforts.

About 5,100 students are currently pursuing Purdue studies in Indianapolis. An estimated 86% of these graduates will go on to their first job in Indiana, making a significant contribution to the state’s economy in the 21st century.

“Purdue’s reputation has never been stronger,” Hasler said. “People across the country understand and appreciate the value and capabilities of our world-class institution. We can leverage this awareness with our strong alumni and industry partners to catapult our presence in Indianapolis to another level.

In establishing a new vision for its Indianapolis campus, Purdue will focus on increasing engineering, technology and computer science enrollment in Indianapolis while creating exciting opportunities for current West Lafayette students “to study at the ‘outside’ Indianapolis and to pursue internships and co-op opportunities with companies in that city.

Purdue plans to increase today’s Indianapolis enrollment by more than 1,000 students, housing many together in what would be a new residential building near their college buildings. Additionally, Purdue will consider opening a branch of its Purdue Applied Research Institute as part of the initiative.

Hasler’s primary role will be to coordinate the activities of the various task forces assisting Purdue University Indianapolis while:

  • Serve as the primary point of contact to advance Purdue’s vision and mission for the Indianapolis expansion with business, community and government leaders, industry and nonprofits, and center community stakeholders from Indiana.
  • Cultivate opportunities with Indianapolis-based companies to support research and academic activities at Purdue University Indianapolis.
  • Work with Indiana University School of Medicine to explore plans for a possible joint research institute.

Hasler came to Purdue in 2013 as President and Chief Entrepreneurship Officer of the Purdue Research Foundation, quickly working to restructure its technology commercialization processes. The result of Hasler’s five years at the helm of the PRF: a record number of patents and licensing agreements based on ever-expanding Purdue research. Additionally, Hasler has established programs and policies to facilitate the commercialization and creation of startups through several avenues, including Purdue Foundry, Purdue Startup Fund, and an express license for teachers and entrepreneurs with predefined terms.

He then led Purdue’s 150th anniversary celebration initiative for a year as Purdue’s executive vice president for communications, overseeing marketing strategy, strategic communications, media relations, advertising, licensing. and digital marketing in collaboration with colleges and units of the university system. As head of marketing from 2018 to early 2020, Hasler began rebuilding an organization that in November 2020 was named the American Marketing Association’s Higher Education Marketing Team of the Year.

Hasler was appointed by the governor at the time. Daniels in 2011 as chief executive of the Indiana Economic Development Corp., also serving as Indiana’s secretary of commerce. In his first year as head of IEDC, Hasler attracted a record 254 companies to Indiana in 2012.

During his long 31-year career at Lilly, the Fortune 500 global pharmaceutical company based in Indianapolis, Hasler held several senior management positions. After retiring from Lilly in 2010, Hasler received the Lilly Lifetime Achievement Award.

Hasler is also founder and president of Hasler Ventures LLC, a company that works to advance breakthrough technologies by making them available to the public through industry collaborations.

A native of Paris, Illinois, Hasler is a graduate of DePauw University and holds an MBA from Duke University. In 2019, he received the Robert C. McDermond Medal for Excellence in Entrepreneurship from DePauw.

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a leading public research institution that develops practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked in each of the past five years as one of the 10 most innovative universities in the United States by US News & World Report, Purdue delivers groundbreaking research and breakthrough discoveries. Committed to hands-on, online, real-world learning, Purdue provides transformative education for all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, allowing more students than ever to graduate debt-free. Find out how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at https://purdue.edu/.

Writer and media contact: Phillip Fiorini, pfiorini@purdue.edu, 765-430-6189

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