Bronx, New York
A pioneer and entrepreneur in the development of medical technology, Manuel Villafana’s achievements have improved the quality of life for thousands of people. Villafana grew up in the Bronx, where he was a member of the Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club. Villafana began his career in sales for a medical technology supplier, and went on to found several successful companies. Chairman and CEO of ATS Medical, his efforts have resulted in new developments in heart valve technology, including creation of a new prosthetic heart valve and laser treatments for coronary disease.