Our monthly roundup of ‘people on the move’ in Canada’s life science and biotech sectors.
NEOMED‐LABS has named Dr. Benoit Bouche as its new chairman of its board of directors. Dr. Bouche is currently managing partner of Trans‐Hit Bio, a worldwide biospecimen access CRO located at the NEOMED Institute Laval. Prior to joining Trans‐Hit Bio, he founded and directed several companies in the Life Sciences sector including: Astel Laboratories (acquired by Zimmer/BMS); FDM Pharma, a clinical stage CRO of which central laboratory activities were acquired by MDS Pharma (now LabCorp); and Galien Development, a regional network of pharmacies. He has also worked as an investment banker and advisor for multiple healthcare companies on innovation and growth‐related issues.
Life Sciences BC has appointed Dr. Lesley Esford as its new executive director. Since 2006, Esford has worked as an ITA with the National Research Council – Industrial Research Assistance Program, helping over 100 entrepreneurs develop a wide array of products and services. Her career path has taken her from B.C. to Boston developing insights, observations and a broad knowledge base in human life sciences along the way. She received her PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from UBC and has a M.Sc. from Brock University. Dr. Esford’s appointment is effective immediately.
The Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD) appoints Gordon McCauley as president and CEO. A Vancouver-based life sciences leader with international experience in the industry, McCauley has been a director of CDRD since 2012, assuming the position of Interim CEO last summer, and will now lead the organization. McCauley’s past roles include: president and CEO of Viable Healthworks Corp., president and CEO of Allon Therapeutics Inc., co-founder of NDI Capital, and a senior advisor to a number of Canadian political leaders. He is past-chair of LifeSciences British Columbia, a director of BIOTECanada, and was the first Canadian appointed to the Board of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) in Washington D.C. where he served in leadership positions until 2013.
RepliCel Life Sciences Inc. announces the appointment of Hugh Rogers to its board of directors. Rogers has extensive corporate finance and restructuring experience through his work with various TSX-V listed issuers and private companies including his most recent roles as CEO of Coronado Resources Ltd. since March 2015 and vice president Corporate Finance at 3D Signatures Inc. since April 2015. Rogers also serves as a director of Kootenay Zinc Corp. and Coronado Resources Ltd. He holds a B.Sc. degree from the University of British Columbia and a Legum Baccalaureus (LLB) degree from University of New Brunswick.
Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. has appointed its founder and chairman of the board Dr. Richard M. Glickman CEO of the company. He replaces Charles Rowland who resigned from the role and as an executive member of the board, effective immediately. Dr. Glickman brings over 30 years of experience including founding and co-founding numerous companies during his career. As the co-founder, chairman and CEO of Aspreva Pharmaceuticals, he played an integral role in developing and establishing CellCept®, or MMF, as the current standard of care for the treatment of lupus nephritis (LN). Aspreva Pharmaceuticals was acquired by Swiss pharmaceutical company Galenica for nearly $1 billion in 2008. He currently serves as founding chairman of Essa Pharmaceuticals Inc., chairman of the board for Engene Corporation and a director of Cardiome Pharma. He is also a partner at Lumira Capital. Additionally, he has served on numerous biotechnology and community boards, including as a member of the federal government’s National Biotechnology Advisory Committee, director of the Canadian Genetic Disease Network, chairman of Life Sciences B.C. and a member of the British Columbia Innovation Council.
Kennet Brysting has been appointed general manager of Gilead Sciences Canada, Inc. The former general manager of Gilead Nordics (Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland), Kennet Brysting also joins Gilead’s North America Commercial Senior Leadership Team. He succeeds Ed Gudaitis, who left the company in October for another opportunity. Brysting has nearly 20 years of industry experience, including prior pharmaceutical industry general manager experience, and more than four years as the general manager for Gilead Nordics, which he grew to be one of Gilead’s top-10 markets. He has an EMBA from Cranfield University, UK, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Management Accounting from Copenhagen Business School.
The NEOMED Institute has named Donald Olds as its new president and CEO and concurrently elected Dr. Laurence Rulleau as chairperson of its board of directors. Olds, who had been chair of the board of directors since NEOMED’s creation in 2012, will continue as a director of the NEOMED Institute and as a director of NEOMED’s subsidiary CRO, NEOMED-LABS.
Dr. Kenneth Hillan, CEO of Achaogen Inc., and Hollings Renton, former CEO and president of Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc., have been appointed to Zymeworks’ board of directors. Concurrent with the appointments, the company reports that Dr. Donald Drakeman has retired from the company’s board and is transitioning to the position of special advisor to the company and its board. Dr. Hillan has served as CEO and a member of the board of directors of Achaogen since October 2011. Prior to joining Achaogen, Dr. Hillan worked at Genentech Inc., a pharmaceutical company and a member of the Roche Group. He also served on the board of directors of Relypsa Inc., a publicly traded biotechnology company that was acquired in 2016 by Galencia AG for $1.5 billion. Renton served as CEO and president of Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 1993 to 2008 and was the chairperson of the board of directors of Onyx from 2000 to 2008. Onyx was acquired by Amgen Inc. in 2013 for $10.4 billion. Before joining Onyx, he was the president and Chief Operating Officer of Chiron Corporation, a pharmaceutical company. He currently serves as chairperson of the board of directors of Portola Pharmaceuticals Inc. and on the board of directors of AnaptysBio Inc.
Sirona Biochem Corp. reports it has by mutual agreement terminated Attila Hajdu’s employment. Coupled with this announcement, the company has added Aleksandra Kasikovic to its team in the new role of manager, Commercial Development. Aleksandra holds a Master’s of Science degree in Biotechnology from McGill University and an undergraduate degree in Biology and Marketing.