Board of Directors
Our team is led by seasoned industry veterans who are dedicated to improving the lives of patients.
Chairman of the Board
President and Chief Executive Officer
William R. Ringo
Chairman of the Board
Mr. Ringo has served as Chairman of the Board since January 2019, and a member of our Board since October 2014. From June 2010 until December 2016, Mr. Ringo served as a senior advisor to Barclays Healthcare Group. From April 2008 until his retirement in April 2010, Mr. Ringo was Senior Vice President of Business Development, Strategy and Innovation at Pfizer Inc., a public pharmaceutical company, and was responsible for guiding Pfizer’s overall strategic planning and business development activities. Prior to joining Pfizer, Mr. Ringo served as an executive in residence at Warburg Pincus and Sofinnova Ventures. From August 2004 to April 2006, Mr. Ringo served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Abgenix, Inc., a biotechnology company acquired by Amgen, Inc. Prior to Abgenix, Mr. Ringo served for 28 years at Eli Lilly and Company in numerous executive roles, including Product Group President for Oncology and Critical Care, President of Internal Medicine Products, President of the Infectious Diseases Business Unit and Vice President of Sales and Marketing for U.S. Pharmaceuticals. Following Mr. Ringo’s retirement from Eli Lilly in 2001, Mr. Ringo served on various boards of directors, including InterMune, Inc. where he served as the non-executive chairman of the board of directors after serving as interim Chief Executive Officer from June 2003 to September 2003. Mr. Ringo currently serves on the boards of directors of Assembly Biosciences, Inc., Dermira, Inc., and Immune Design Corp., each of which is a public biotechnology company. Mr. Ringo was previously a member of the board of directors of Immune Design Corp., Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Mirati Therapeutics, Inc., and Sangamo Therapeutics, Inc., each of which was a public company during Mr. Ringo’s service as a director. Mr. Ringo received a B.S. in business administration and an M.B.A. from the University of Dayton.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Knickerbocker has served as our Chief Executive Officer since January 2018 and as a member of the Board of Directors since October 2013. Prior to this, he served as Chief Operating Officer since September 2016. He previously served as the Company’s Chief Business Officer from April 2012 to September 2016, as Executive Vice President from August 2015 to September 2016, and as Senior Vice President from April 2012 to August 2015. Prior to that, he was Vice President, Business Development from September 2009 to April 2012. From 2001 to September 2009, Mr. Knickerbocker served at Genentech in positions of increasing responsibility most recently as Senior Director, Business Development from 2005 to September 2009. Prior to 2001, Mr. Knickerbocker served as Director of Commercial Development at ALZA, a pharmaceutical company acquired by Johnson & Johnson, as Senior Manager, Corporate Development at Amgen, and as a scientist at Bristol-Myers Squibb. Mr. Knickerbocker received an A.B. in Biology from Washington University in St. Louis and an M.B.A. from the University of Michigan.
Franklin M. Berger, CFA
Mr. Berger has served as a member of our Board since September 2010. Mr. Berger is a consultant to biotechnology industry participants, including major biopharmaceutical firms, mid-capitalization biotechnology companies, specialist asset managers and venture capital companies, providing business development, strategic advisory, financing, partnering, and royalty acquisition advice. Mr. Berger is also a biotechnology industry analyst with over 25 years of experience in capital markets and financial analysis. Mr. Berger worked at Sectoral Asset Management as a founder of the small-cap focused NEMO Fund from 2007 through June 2008. From May 1998 to March 2003, he served at J.P. Morgan Securities, most recently as Managing Director, Equity Research and Senior Biotechnology Analyst. Previously, Mr. Berger served in similar capacities at Salomon Smith Barney and Josephthal & Co. Mr. Berger also serves on the boards of directors of BELLUS Health, Inc., ESSA Pharma Inc., Kezar Life Sciences, Inc., Proteostasis Therapeutics, Inc., and Tocagen Inc., each of which is a public biotechnology company. Mr. Berger previously served as a member of the board of directors of BioTime, Inc., Immune Design Corp., and Seattle Genetics, Inc., each of which was a public company during Mr. Berger’s service as a director. Mr. Berger received a B.A. in International Relations and an M.A. in International Economics both from Johns Hopkins University and an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.
Kapil Dhingra, M.B.B.S.
Dr. Dhingra has served as a member of our Board since December 2015. Dr. Dhingra currently serves as the Managing Member of KAPital Consulting, LLC, a healthcare consulting firm that he founded in 2008. Dr. Dhingra has over 25 years of experience in oncology clinical research and drug development. From 1999 to 2008, Dr. Dhingra worked at Hoffmann-La Roche, where he served in roles of increasing responsibility, most recently as Vice President, Head of the Oncology Disease Biology Leadership Team and Head of Oncology Clinical Development. From 2000 to 2008, he held a Clinical Affiliate appointment at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. From 1996 to 1999, Dr. Dhingra worked at Eli Lilly and Company where he served in roles of increasing responsibility, most recently as Senior Clinical Research Physician. Dr. Dhingra also served as a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at the Indiana University School of Medicine from 1997 to 1999. Prior to Eli Lilly, Dr. Dhingra was a member of the faculty of M.D. Anderson Cancer Center from 1989 to 1996. Dr. Dhingra currently serves on the board of directors of Median Technologies Inc., Autolus Therapeutics plc and Replimune Group, Inc. Dr. Dhingra previously served as a member of the board of directors of Micromet, Inc., until its acquisition by Amgen Inc., Advanced Accelerator Applications S.A., until its acquisition by Novartis AG, and YM Biosciences Inc., until its acquisition by Gilead Sciences, Inc., each of which was a public company during Dr. Dhingra’s service as a director. Dr. Dhingra received his M.B.B.S. degree from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi, India. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center and New York Medical College and completed his fellowship in hematology and oncology at Emory University School of Medicine.
Peder K. Jensen, M.D.
Dr. Jensen has served as a member of our Board since July 2011. Dr. Jensen is currently President of Bay Way Consultants, LLC, a consulting firm founded by Dr. Jensen in 2010 that advises pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Dr. Jensen has over 24 years of global drug development experience in both pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies and has been responsible for more than 40 new drug approvals in the U.S., Europe and Japan during his career. Dr. Jensen’s experience includes over 20 years with Schering- Plough Corporation, a global pharmaceutical company, and then Merck & Co., Inc. after the merger of Schering- Plough with Merck in 2009. Dr. Jensen most recently served at Schering-Plough as Corporate Senior Vice President, and General Manager, R&D for Japan and Asia/Pacific from 2006 to 2010. Dr. Jensen has also served at British Biotech plc and Chiron Corporation in clinical development executive positions and earlier in hiscareer at CIBA-GEIGY Limited. Dr. Jensen is also a member of the board of directors of Acorda Therapeutics, Inc., a public biotechnology company. Dr. Jensen previously served as a member of the board of directors of BioCryst Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which was a public pharmaceutical company during Jensen’s service as a director. Dr. Jensen received an M.D. degree from the University of Copenhagen, where he also completed his post-graduate medical training in neurology and internal medicine.
Mr. Nicholson has served as a member of our Board since May 2017. Mr. Nicholson served as President and Chief Executive Officer of XTuit Pharmaceuticals, Inc., from September 2015 to October 2016. From May 2008 to March 2015, Mr. Nicholson served at Pfizer Inc. as President, Pfizer Oncology. Prior to joining Pfizer, Mr. Nicholson worked at Eli Lilly and Company where he held roles of increasing responsibility, most recently as the Global Oncology Platform Leader. Mr. Nicholson currently serves on the board of directors of G1 Therapeutics, Inc., a public pharmaceutical company. Mr. Nicholson previously served on the board of directors of Tesaro, Inc., which was a public company until it was acquired by GlaxoSmithKline plc. Mr. Nicholson received a B.S. in Pharmacy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an M.B.A. from the University of South Carolina.
Ms. Schafer has served as a member of our Board since May 2019. Ms. Schafer has more than 25 years of experience in investment banking, equity capital markets, corporate finance and business development and has worked extensively within the biopharmaceutical industry. Ms. Schafer currently serves as managing partner at Hyphen Advisors, LLC, a firm that provides advisory, consulting and board services to public and private companies and boards of directors on topics such as financing strategy and execution, financial planning and analysis, investor access and messaging, and strategic initiatives. From April 2007 to September 2018, Ms. Schafer worked at Wells Fargo Securities, most recently as Vice Chair in Equity Capital Markets. From December 2003 to February 2007, Ms. Schafer served as Vice President, Finance and Business Development at Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a public biotechnology company. From January 1986 to November 2003, Ms. Schafer worked at J.P. Morgan, where she held positions of increasing responsibility, most recently as Managing Director in Equity Capital Markets. Ms. Schafer currently serves on the board of directors of Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a public biotechnology company. Ms. Schafer received a B.S. in Mathematics and Computer Science from Boston College and an M.B.A. from New York University.
Lewis T. “Rusty” Williams, M.D., Ph.D.
Dr. Williams founded the company in December 2001 and has served as a member of our Board since January 2002. Dr. Williams served as our Executive Chairman from July 2003 to January 2012 and January 2018 to December 2018, as our President and Chief Executive Officer from August 2011 to December 2017, and as Chairman of the Board from March 2016 to December 2017. Previously, Dr. Williams spent seven years at Chiron Corporation, a biopharmaceutical company, now Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, Inc., most recently as its Chief Scientific Officer. Prior to joining Chiron, Dr. Williams was a professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco and served as Director of the University’s Cardiovascular Research Institution and Daiichi Research Center. Dr. Williams also has served on the faculties of Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital and co-founded COR Therapeutics, Inc., a biotechnology company focused on cardiovascular disease. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Williams is currently on thea member of the board of directors of Protagonist Therapeutics, Inc. and Neoleukin Therapeutics, Inc., each of which is a public biotechnology company. Dr. Williams and was previously a member of the boards of directors of Chiron, COR Therapeutics, and Beckman Coulter, Inc., each of which was a public company during his service as a director. Dr. Williams received a B.S. from Rice University and an M.D. and a Ph.D. from Duke University.
Ms. Lyons-Williams has served as a member of our Board since June 2019. Since December 2016, Ms. Lyons-Williams has served as Chief Commercial Officer at Dermira, Inc., a public biotechnology company, where she is responsible for the strategic, financial and operational leadership of the company’s product portfolio. From January 2002 to August 2016, Ms. Lyons-Williams worked at Allergan, Inc., a public biotechnology company, where she held positions of increasing responsibility, most recently as Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Urology. Ms. Lyons-Williams also served as a member of the Allergan Commercial Leadership Team and the Operational Leadership Team. Prior to Allergan, Ms. Lyons-Williams served as a pharmaceutical sales representative at Johnson & Johnson, Inc. Ms. Lyons-Williams received a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and an M.B.A., Marketing from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.