Salt Lake City

Mayor's Office

Erin Mendenhall | (801) 535-7704

Salt Lake City welcomes new tech advisor to support Tech Lake City initiative

April 3, 2024

Salt Lake City’s Department of Economic Development has announced Atim A. Enyenihi, Ph.D. as the department’s new Technology and Innovation Strategic Advisor. Dr. Enyenihi joins the city with 18 years of experience as a chemist developing and validating analytical methods for a variety of purposes including discovery and development of therapeutics, clinical laboratory testing, and newborn screening for rare diseases.

“Salt Lake City has a tremendous opportunity to become a world-class hub for healthcare innovation and tech,” said Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall. “Not only will this hub help move the needle on healthcare and tech advancements globally, but it will also mean good-paying, quality jobs for Salt Lakers. Our focus for this approach to economic development is human-centered, and the addition of Atim to our dynamic team will help bolster these efforts. I am excited to have her joining this work.”

“I am thrilled that Dr. Enyenihi is joining us,” said Lorena Riffo-Jenson, Department of Economic Development Director. “With Dr. Enyenihi’s unique and intimate perspective in the Life Sciences, she can move the needle for tech industries in new and incredible ways.”

Dr. Enyenihi will support the implementation of Mayor Mendenhall’s Healthcare Innovation Blueprint, a collaborative, partner-driven document outlining pathways for a thriving Biotech hub in Salt Lake City. She will also broaden the umbrella of industries served by Tech Lake City, the overarching concept guiding the Healthcare Innovation initiative, and enhance the branding potential for the concept. 

“I envision a landscape enriched with healthcare innovation organizations in Salt Lake City,” said Dr. Enyenihi.” This means fostering the establishment of multiple Biotech companies with 500 employees or more, each dedicated to pioneering the discovery and development of therapeutics right here in our city. We aim to position Salt Lake City as a significant player in the Biotech industry on the global stage and be recognized as a pivotal hub of innovation and advancement in the field of biotechnology.”

Born and raised in Nigeria, Dr. Enyenihi lived in several countries before settling in Utah. She is multilingual, loves the outdoors, and is an avid snowboarder and rock climber. Professionally, Dr. Enyenihi’s career has traversed academia, clinical diagnostics, biotechnology, and Tech Bio. Holding bachelor’s degrees in Chemistry and Spanish, she earned her doctorate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and went on to complete a Postdoctoral position at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.

Dr. Enyenihi has committed a considerable portion of her career to Salt Lake City, serving as a Scientist at ARUP Laboratories, and in Senior Scientist positions at Utah Public Health Laboratory (UPHL) and Recursion. Among her accomplishments, she takes pride in her significant contribution to Utah’s newborn screening initiative. During her tenure at UPHL, she partnered with the Centers for Disease Control to introduce a crucial test for the early detection of X-linked Adrenoleukodystrophy, a condition associated with serious health problems if not diagnosed and treated quickly.

With nearly a decade of living and working in the Salt Lake City community, Dr. Enyenihi is now driven to serve the city and to make a local impact advocating for STEM education, the Biotech industry, Biotech professionals and the broader Tech sector.

About Salt Lake City Department of Economic Development: Formed in 2016, Salt Lake City’s Department of Economic Development is focused on building Salt Lake City as a vibrant, beautiful, prosperous, diverse, and authentic place – a place that is economically accessible to everyone. Known as the “Crossroads of the West,” Salt Lake City is strategically located for businesses to succeed. SLCDED works to streamline processes, provide excellent customer service, and offer an array of resources and services to recruit and retain businesses in the City, and ensure they have the tools to thrive.  Learn more

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