XENEX was founded by two infectious disease epidemiologists, Dr. Julie Stachowiak and Dr. Mark Stibich, who earned their doctorates at Johns Hopkins University.
Julie holds two masters degrees from Columbia University in public health and international affairs, and she is the founder of a non-profit organization fighting to lessen the suffering caused by HIV/AIDS. Mark also holds a master’s degree in International Health. Julie and Mark have spent their lives in international public health research, Mark has served in the Peace Corps. Julie has held a faculty position at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and Mark is a Visiting Scientist at the MD Anderson Cancer Center.
After learning about the use of pulsed xenon bulbs overseas to eliminate airborne tuberculosis, they knew the technology had potential application in environmental disinfection of healthcare spaces. When they co-founded XENEX in 2008, evidence that pointed to the role of the environment on healthcare associated infections (HAIs) was slowly building. As public health researchers, they felt strongly that enhanced disinfection in hospitals could drastically reduce the pain and suffering caused by HAIs. Existing, older technologies for making UV had yet to achieve clinical outcomes.
XENEX was accepted into the Houston Technology Center, a startup incubator, in 2008 and by 2010 XENEX’s prototype devices were being implemented in hospitals. Initial results from many of those first hospitals was incredibly encouraging: Cooley-Dickinson Hospital (MA) reported an 86% drop in rates of C.difficile infections and Cone Health, whose MRSA infections plummeted in the first 6 months of using XENEX, saved over $2 million.
By this time, Morris Miller was introduced to Julie and Mark. Miller, a co-founder of Rackspace, was eager to invest and stepped in as CEO in 2012. In 2012, the launch of the PX-UV 426t Robot was well-received and scores of hospitals adopted pulsed xenon technology.
In the same year, the first published evidence of impact of ultraviolet disinfection on HAI rates was published by Cooley-Dickinson and Cone Health, and more would follow. Julie and Mark’s guidance continues to define XENEX as an organization grounded in science and committed to contributing research that enhances patient safety worldwide.