Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Online Media

Catalog Data

GV Medical, Inc.  Search this
Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc.  Search this
CABG Medical, Inc.  Search this
ATS Medical, Inc.  Search this
St. Jude Medical, Inc.  Search this
Med General, Inc.  Search this
Kips Bay Medical, Inc.  Search this
Helix BioCore, Inc.  Search this
Villafana, Manny, 1940-  Search this
10 Cubic feet (25 boxes)
Archival materials
Collection descriptions
Annual reports
Press releases
Stock records
The collection documents Manny Villafaña, inventor, entrepreneur and founder of several medical device companies since 1971. The majority of the collection pertains to St. Jude Medical, which introduced the mechanical heart valve technology that became the industry standard.
Scope and Contents:
The collection consists of 10 cubic feet of material documenting Manny Villafaña, an inventor and entrepreneur. The bulk of the collection is comprised of correspondence and clippings related to his professional life. There are a few personal items in the collection, such as a St. Jude prayer card, included with the records of St. Jude Medical and a photograph of Villafaña (1988) at the construction site of the Basilica of St. Mary.
Biographical / Historical:
Manny Villafaña (b. 1940- ) began his career in medical technology as a salesman for Medtronic, Inc., exploring the potential market in Argentina. Upon his return to the U.S. Villafaña went on to found Cardiac Pacemakers Inc. and later St. Jude Medical. During the decade following the founding of CPI, Manny Villafaña business savvy and medical technology know-how would propel him to celebrity in the Minnesota business community and national entrepreneurial scene. Some of the technology introduced by Villafaña's companies, such as the St. Jude's pyrolytic bileaflet artificial heart valve, have become industry standards. Villafaña would eventually found seven medical technology companies, with Kips Bay being the most recent.
Related Materials:
Materials at the Archives Center, National Museum of American History Wilson Greatbatch Innovative Lives Presentation, 1996 (ACNMAH 0601) James A. E. Halkett and Sigmund A. Wesolowski, M.D., Papers, 1948-1951 (ACNMAH 0220) Van Phillips Oral History and Papers, 1991-2004 (ACNMAH 0859) George Edward Burch Papers, 1984-1986 (ACNMAH 0316) James A. E. Halkett and Sigmund A. Wesolowski, M.D., Papers, 1948-1951 (ACNMAH 0220) Materials Held by Other Organizations Conversazione, November 20, 1997, January 21, 1998 and May 20, 1998. Oral history is on file at the Minnesota Historical Society.
Separated Materials:
Related heart valves are in the Division of Medicine and Science, National Museum of American History. See Accession 2015.003.
Collection donated by Manny Villafaña on January 29, 2015.
Collection is open for research.
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Cardiovascular Equipment Industry  Search this
Heart, Artificial  Search this
Inventors -- 21st century  Search this
Medical Equipment  Search this
Medical innovations  Search this
Medical instruments and apparatus  Search this
Inventions -- 20th century  Search this
Inventions -- 21st century  Search this
Inventors -- 20th century  Search this
Heart -- Surgery  Search this
Medicine  Search this
Correspondence -- 1980-2010
Annual reports
Correspondence -- 20th century
Correspondence -- 21st century
Annual reports -- 20th century
Press releases
Stock records
Manny Villafaña Papers, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Manny Villafaña Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History