Robert E. Hoffman
Chairman of the Board
Robert E. Hoffman has served as a director since April 11, 2018 and as our Chairman since June 2, 2018. He has served as a member of Kura Oncology, Inc.’s Board of Directors since March 2015 and as a member of Aslan Pharmaceuticals, Inc.’s Board of Directors since October 2018. Mr. Hoffman has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Heron Therapeutics, Inc., a publicly-held pharmaceutical company since April 2017. Prior to joining Heron Therapeutics, Inc., Mr. Hoffman served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Innovus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a publicly-held pharmaceutical company, from September 2016 to April 2017. From July 2015 to September 2016, Mr. Hoffman served as Chief Financial Officer of AnaptysBio, Inc., a publicly-held biotechnology company. From June 2012 to July 2015, Mr. Hoffman served as the Senior Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer of Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc., or Arena, a publicly-held biopharmaceutical company. From August 2011 to June 2012 and previously from December 2005 to March 2011, he served as Arena’s Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer and in a number of various roles of increasing responsibility from 1997 to December 2005. From March 2011 to August 2011, Mr. Hoffman served as Chief Financial Officer for Polaris Group, a biopharmaceutical drug company. Mr. Hoffman formerly served as a member of the Board of Directors of CombiMatrix Corporation, a molecular diagnostics company, and MabVax Therapeutics Holdings, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company. Mr. Hoffman serves as a member of the Financial Accounting Standards Board’s Small Business Advisory Committee and the steering committee of the Association of Bioscience Financial Officers. Mr. Hoffman formerly served as a director and President, of the San Diego Chapter of Financial Executives International. Mr. Hoffman holds a B.B.A. from St. Bonaventure University, and is licensed as a C.P.A. (inactive) in the State of California.
Lynda Cranston, B.Sc.N., M.Sc.N., ICD.D
Lynda Cranston BScN, MScN, ICD.D has served as a director since February 5, 2015. Mrs. Cranston comes to the Board with over 20 years of experience at the CEO level in healthcare. She is presently Chair of the British Columbia Rapid Transit Company. She previously was, from 2014 to 2016, the National Chair of the Gastrointestinal Association of Canada. In 2013 she retired from the healthcare industry and her last appointment prior to her retirement was as the first CEO of the British Columbia Provincial Health Services Authority (2002 to 2013). From 1998-2001, Mrs. Cranston had been the first CEO of the Canadian Blood Services in Ottawa, ON. Before moving to Ottawa, Mrs. Cranston, as the CEO of B.C. Women’s Hospital and Healthcare Centre had merged the organization with the BC Children’s Hospital and the Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children to become the Children’s and Women’s Healthcare Centre of BC. Following the merger Mrs. Cranston became the first CEO. In 2013, Mrs. Cranston was identified as a member of Diversity 50 by the Canadian Board Diversity Council as being one of Canada’s most board ready candidates. Mrs. Cranston was awarded the Board Chair Award of Excellence by the HealthCare Leaders; Association of British Columbia in 2008. In 2007, she was inducted into Canada’s Most Powerful Women Top 100 Hall of Fame after having been identified in ’04, ’05 & ’06 as one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women Top 100. Mrs. Cranston is a recipient of the YWCA Women of Distinction Award, the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada Commemorative Medal for community contributions, and the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal for contribution to Canada and community. Mrs. Cranston is a graduate of the University of Ottawa and the University of Western Ontario.
Napoleone Ferrara, M.D.
Chair - Scientific Advisory Board
Dr. Ferrara has served as a director since June 22, 2018. Dr. Ferrara is currently a distinguished professor of pathology and a distinguished adjunct professor of ophthalmology and pharmacology at the University of California, San Diego. Previously, he held increasingly senior positions at Genentech, Inc., over a 24-year period, including fellow, staff scientist and senior scientist. He is a pioneer in the study of angiogenesis biology and identification of its regulators. Dr. Ferrara's lab is responsible for discovering the isolation and cDNA cloning of VEGF and demonstrated that VEGF was a major mediator of tumor angiogenesis leading to the development of Avastin® (bevacizumab). Additionally, his lab's studies led to the clinical development of an anti-VEGF antibody fragment, Lucentis® (ranibizumab), as a highly effective therapy preventing vision loss in intraocular neovascular disorders. Dr. Ferrara has been the recipient of over 60 awards/honors, given more than 300 presentations, authored over 70 patents, and written more than 300 articles, reviews/editorials and published book chapters. He received his fellowship training and postdoctoral research from the University of California, San Francisco, his M.D. (cum laude) and residency training from the University of Catania Medical School, and his Maturita' Classica from Liceo Classico Mario Cutelli.
Laura Johnson has served as a director since June 26, 2020. Ms. Johnson currently serves as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Next Generation Clinical Research, a contract research organization that Ms. Johnson founded in 1999. Additionally, Ms. Johnson is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Eufaeria Biosciences, Inc., a development biotechnology company that she founded in 2016. Ms. Johnson is also a founder and former member of the board of directors of SB Bancorp, Inc., a financial holding company, and Settlers Bank, Inc., a Wisconsin chartered business bank. In addition, Ms. Johnson has served as a member of the board of directors of La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company (Nasdaq: LJPC), a biopharmaceutical company, since 2013, Odonate Therapeutics (Nasdaq: ODT), a biopharmaceutical company, since 2018, Harmony Hill Farm Sanctuary since 2019 and Agrace HospiceCare from 2013 to 2016. In 2008 and 2010, she was honored as a biotechnology entrepreneur by the national organization, Women in Bio, and in 2008 received the Rising Star Award by the Wisconsin Biotech and Medical Device Association. Most recently, she was the recipient of the Wisconsin Biohealth Business Award at the BioForward Annual Biohealth Summit in October 2019. Ms. Johnson holds a nursing degree from The University of the State of New York-Albany.
Robert J. Toth, Jr., M.B.A.
Robert J. Toth, Jr., MBA has served as a director since August 20, 2013. Since 2005, Mr. Toth has primarily been managing his personal investment portfolio. From 2004-2005, Mr. Toth served as a consulting analyst to Narragansett Asset Management, a New York-based healthcare-focused hedge fund, where he advised the firm on biotechnology investments. From 2001-2003, he was the Senior Portfolio Manager for San Francisco-based EGM Capital’s Medical Technology hedge fund, where he was responsible for managing and maintaining a dedicated medical technology portfolio. Mr. Toth began his Wall Street career in 1996 as an Equity Research Associate for Vector Securities International, a healthcare-focused brokerage firm. From 1997-1999 he served as Senior Biotechnology Analyst. He joined Prudential Securities as Senior Vice President and Biotechnology Analyst where he served from 1999-2001 following Prudential’s acquisition of Vector. His responsibilities included the analysis of commercial, clinical and scientific fundamentals of oncology and genomics-based biotechnology companies on behalf of institutional investors. Mr. Toth was named to the Wall Street Journal’s Allstar List for stock picking in 1999. Mr. Toth received an MBA from the University of Washington and Bachelor of Science degrees in Biological Sciences and Biochemistry from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Director
Saiid Zarrabian has served as our director since July 7, 2017, Chief Executive Officer since November 3, 2017, and President since January 1, 2018. Since October 2016, Mr. Zarrabian has served as an advisor to Redline Capital Partners, S.A., a Luxembourg based investment firm. From 2012 to 2014 he served as Chairman and member of the Board of La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company during which time the company transitioned from an OTC listed company to a NASDAQ listed company. From 2012 to 2013 he served as President of the Protein Production Division of Intrexon Corporation, a synthetic biology company. He has also previously served as CEO and member of the Board of Cyntellect, Inc., a stem cell processing and visualization Instrumentation company until its sale in 2012, as President and COO of Senomyx, Inc., a company focused on discovery and commercialization of new flavor ingredients, and as COO of Pharmacopeia, Inc., a former publicly-traded provider of combinatorial chemistry discovery services and compounds, where he also served as President & COO of its MSI Division. In addition, Mr. Zarrabian has served on numerous private and public company boards, including at Immune Therapeutics, Inc., Exemplar Pharma, LLC, Ambit Biosciences Corporation, eMolecules, Inc., and Penwest Pharmaceuticals CO. His other experience includes COO at Molecular Simulations, COO of Symbolics, Inc., and as R&D Director at Computervision, Inc.