Purdue News

2005 Honorary Degree

Gordon M. Binder
Doctor Of Engineering

Gordon M. Binder

Gordon M. Binder has distinguished himself as a chief executive officer of Amgen, Inc., a company that develops medicines that allow people to live longer, healthier and more productive lives.

Now a venture capitalist with Coastview Capital LLC, headquartered in Los Angeles, Binder retired in 2000 from Amgen. He has served higher education through Amgen’s support of research at more than 300 universities and through his personal philanthropy while serving on the board of directors of two leading research universities.

Raised in Alamogordo, N.M., Binder came to Purdue on a Navy ROTC Scholarship and earned his bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering in 1957. After three years in the Navy, he enrolled at Harvard University and earned his MBA in 1962 before starting his career in finance with Litton Industries, Ford Motor Company and System Development Corporation.

In 1982, Binder became vice president for finance of Amgen, a biotech startup company with 50 employees. Eight years later, Amgen had grown to 400 employees and he became chairman of the board and chief executive officer. Under his leadership, Amgen emerged as a global pharmaceutical powerhouse and industry leader. By 2000, the company employed 6,400 people in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, Japan and Hong Kong. Revenue increased from $70 million in 1988 to more than $3 billion in 2000 to rank among the top 20 pharmaceutical companies in worldwide revenue.

During Binder's tenure, Amgen served millions of patients by developing breakthrough drugs utilizing novel technologies, including Epogen, which is used in the treatment of anemia, and Neupogen, an infection-prevention treatment for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy and bone marrow transplants. These two drugs continue to be the two largest selling biotechnology products in the world.

At Purdue, Binder has previously received the Outstanding Electrical Engineering Award and the Distinguished Engineering Alumnus Award, was inducted into Purdue's ROTC Hall of Fame, and is currently serving on the Discovery Park Advisory Board.