William Annett

William Annett is an experienced life sciences executive whose career has consisted primarily of senior roles in rapid growth situations. He has key strengths in entrepreneurial management, finance, and operational transformations.

For the last eight years Mr. Annett has served in a number of high profile positions at Genentech, including heading the Commercial Strategy and Project Finance groups. In the latter role he was responsible for the $1 billion Development budget and supported the entire Genentech clinical pipeline. Most recently he led one of the largest change initiatives in Genentech’s history, a $150 million/450 person program that replaced Commercial’s IT infrastructure and business processes. Following the Roche acquisition he was the Commercial lead in integrating Roche’s brands with Genentech’s processes and IT platforms .

Prior to Genentech Mr. Annett developed four early stage companies, three times as Chief Executive. This included founding a company, taking it public on NASDAQ and leading it as CEO for six years. He also led the west coast biotech practice at a large consulting company, and was a member of the senior management team at a UK private equity backed buyout that returned 100 times its investment in three years.

Mr. Annett has served on the Boards of Directors of nine profit and non-profit organizations. He received his MBA from the Harvard Business School and an MA in Psychology from John F. Kennedy University.

Russ Belden

Russ Belden is the President & CEO of Life Sciences Bridge Consulting LLC, which specializes in capturing the intrinsic value of client assets through the seamless integration of strategic marketing and commercial planning expertise to support life cycle management, create differentiated products and enhance value. Over the past eight years, “ Bridge” has worked with over 25 emerging stage biotech companies and was recognized by the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) for their commercial expertise. Prior to Bridge Consulting, Russ spent 16 years at Genentech, including 7 years in marketing and launching the BioOncology business through the Rituxan and Herceptin launches. Russ earned a B.S. in Pharmacy from the University of Buffalo and completed 2/3 of a Masters in Marketing program at the University of Texas at Dallas prior to Genentech relocation to bay area.

Peter Daly

Specialties: Risk Insurance Adviser to Emerging Life Science companies including:

  • Guiding Entrepreneurs on Business Insurance needs;
  • Directors’ and Officers’ Insurance;
  • Clinical Trials/Product Liability Insurance and;
  • Global Business Insurance Programs.

Peter Daly is a Founding Principal of ABD Insurance and Financial Services. He provides the direction for a team of risk management and insurance specialists who deliver brokerage services to clients. Peter has specialized throughout his career in emerging technology business while developing expertise in the special needs in this market segment. His work with companies that outsourced operations lead to an expertise in developing Risk Insurance programs to protect their Supply Chain exposures, particularly for the semiconductor and life science industries. Peter has published articles on a variety of topics including risk management for outsourced life science companies and the insurance pricing cycles.

Peter graduated from Princeton University in 1976, where he was an All American swimmer. He started in the insurance industry in 1980 as a commercial lines marketing representative for the CNA Insurance Companies. Since the early 1980’s he has worked with many cutting edge clients including NeXT Computers, PDL BioPharma and Business Objects, actively working on behalf of those clients in such areas as Directors’ and Officers’ Liability and Products Liability/Clinical Trials insurance for Life Science clients. A life long student, Peter earned his Certified Insurance Counselor designation in 1989 and has completed CPCU and CRM courses. He was recognized by Risk & Insurance Magazine as a 2010 Power Broker as well.

Active in community service, Peter has been chairperson of the Woodside Recreation Committee, co-chair of the search committee for a new superintendent for Woodside School and board member of the Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired. He served as the chair of the Board of Directors of the Chapter Board for the Northern California/Northern Nevada Alzheimer’s Association, as well as a member of BayBio’s Board of Directors. Peter currently lives in Woodside California with his wife, where they have raised their four children.

Stephanie Diaz

  • Significant experience in biotechnology/health science finance and communications
  • Focus on investor relations, financing strategy and corporate/business development
  • Significant biotech/health science operations experience including:
    • Investor relations
    • Communications
    • Financing strategy
    • Corporate development

Ms. Diaz began working in the biotechnology/health science industry in 1987 and founded Vida in September 2002. Prior to founding Vida, Ms. Diaz served as senior vice president and director, West Coast operations for Burns McClellan, a national healthcare communications agency. With responsibility for heading Burns McClellan´s West Coast operations, Ms. Diaz directly managed public and investor relations programs for all West Coast clients.

Prior to joining Burns McClellan, Ms. Diaz held a number of senior financial positions with several life science companies, serving as vice president and chief financial officer of Shaman Pharmaceuticals, Inc., director of finance of Hyseq, Inc. (renamed Nuvelo, Inc.), and director of finance of Martek Biosciences Corporation. During her career, Ms. Diaz has managed finance and accounting functions, directed public and private financings, managed business development efforts, worked with manufacturing and marketing teams to initiate production and commercialization of new products, and supervised public and investor relations programs.

Ms. Diaz completed a Master of Business Administration in finance at Georgetown University and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from Stanford University.

Deepa Dhar

Deepa Dhar is founder and principal of FOLIO architects, an architectural practice that specializes in the design of facilities for the life sciences. Ms. Dhar has over 20 years experience in the detailed programming, strategic planning, design and management of high- tech research, development and manufacturing facilities for biotechnology, medical device and pharmaceutical clients. Her adherence to fundamental principles of architectural design, coupled with her ability to identify the key essentials of good lab functionality and process flow, enables her to produce simple, logical & appropriate solutions to seemingly complex requirements. Understanding the clients’ goals and being there to provide guidance in her area of expertise has led her to develop long term relationships with a series of clients which include Johnson & Johnson, Novo Nordisk, Dynavax Corporation and the SLAC Linear Accelerator Center.

Ms. Dhar has a Masters in Architecture from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is a licensed architect and a LEED accredited professional. She is Editor of the International Facilities Management Association, Silicon Valley chapter newsletter and has written for several industry publications including R&D magazine. She has presented at Labs 21 and Gene acres and was recently recognized as a 2010 ‘Women of Influence’ by the Silicon Valley Business Journal.

Robert Erwin

Mr. Erwin is president of iBio, Inc. (AMEX: IBIO), a biotechnology company commercializing a green plant platform for vaccines and therapeutic proteins, and he is chairman of Novici Biotech LLC (Vacaville, California). From 2003 until 2007 he was managing director of Bio-Strategic Directors LLC, a life science-industry consulting firm focused on intellectual property and strategy. He was chief executive officer of Large Scale Biology Corporation from 1992 to 2003 and served as its chairman until 2006. He was chairman of Icon Genetics AG from 1999 until its acquisition by a subsidiary of Bayer AG in 2006. Mr. Erwin is also active in the not-for-profit sector and has served as president of the Marti Nelson Cancer Foundation since 1994. He is a member of the National Cancer Policy Forum of the Institute of Medicine, a former member of the Data and Safety Monitoring Board for the Cancer and Leukemia Group B, and the Research Committee of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. He served as a member of the California Breast Cancer Research Council from 1996 to 1999 and was its chairman from 1997 to 1999. Mr. Erwin is an inventor on several issued and pending patents and has B.S. and M.S. degrees in zoology and genetics from Louisiana State University.

Shauna Farr-Jones

Shauna Farr-Jones, Ph.D., has over 11 years of experience in assisting life science companies secure grant and contract funding from numerous government and philanthropic agencies. With her assistance, companies have been awarded over $125 million from agencies including BARDA, EPA, NIH, DTRA, USDA, DARPA and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She provides strategic input on both research and business plans, as well as identifying funding opportunities. Previously, she was Senior Writer BioCentury Publications, where she analyzed and wrote about the biotechnology industry. Currently, she assists life science companies obtain funding for their research and development efforts. She was previously a post-doctoral fellow at UCSF in the Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry and has a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Tufts University.

Thomas J. Higgins

Thomas Higgins was the founding chief executive and is a director of Prosetta Corporation, a highly innovative biotechnology company focused on drug discovery and development, located in San Francisco, CA. He served as the president and CEO from 2003-2008. Prior to that, he was president and chief operating officer of Business for Social Responsibility. BSR is the leading global resource for businesses seeking to improve their performance in areas of corporate social responsibility, with over 700 member companies worldwide.

Higgins was previously a senior vice president of Edison International and its subsidiary, Southern California Edison. Edison is a $15 billion power generation and electric distribution company. During his career with the company, Higgins served on the management committee and helped to set overall strategy for the company. He had responsibility for several staff functions and was president of Edison Enterprises, an unregulated subsidiary.

After earlier career experience as a newspaper reporter and gubernatorial campaign manager, Higgins became the founder and executive director of a multi-service drug abuse treatment program in the Illinois-Iowa Quad Cities in the early 1970s. Subsequently, he was elected to the Iowa General Assembly at the age of 27, where he served three terms and was chairman of the Health and Human Resources Committee, authoring key legislative improvements.

Higgins received several appointments from President Carter, beginning as a senior executive at HEW and HHS, as regional director of HEW and later Associate Commissioner of the Social Security Administration. His service culminated as a presidential appointee on the White House Senior Staff, where he served as Deputy Secretary to the Cabinet. In the early 1980s he served as head of the Health and Social Services Department in Portland, Oregon, which pioneered new models of health care finance and delivery.

In 1983, he began his private sector career as founding Publisher and President of The Business Journal in Portland, published by American Cities Business Journals. Subsequently, Higgins became the co-founder and editor-in-chief of HealthWeek, a national newspaper covering health business news in the United States, published by CMP Publications.

In 1990, Higgins was recruited as a vice president of Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Maryland. He was subsequently elected a Senior Vice President of the company, with broad responsibilities for operations and staff organizations at BC/BS, as well as its subsidiary holdings.

Higgins has a distinguished record of community service. He currently serves on the boards of directors of Tutor Corps and the 3rd Street Youth Center and Clinic in San Francisco. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of St. Ambrose University, in Davenport, Iowa, where he graduated cum laude in 1967.

Higgins is a member and former chairman of the board of SCAN Health Plan, a $1.5 billion not- for-profit Medicare Advantage Plan in Southern California. He also serves as chairman of the board of the SCAN Health Foundation, an independent philanthropy focused on reform of long term care financing and service delivery.

Mary Ann Ireland

When to contact Mary Ann:

  • Your company is growing and current managers need to step up to new levels of responsibility.
  • The business is suffering from a lack of accountability and initiative throughout the ranks.
  • Organizational, department, or team mood is suffering, affecting results.
  • A critical milestone was just missed, and no one saw the breakdown coming.
  • The wrong people are heading the effort, despite good intentions.
  • Cross-functional team members are retreating into their silos.
  • The senior team is breaking up into factions, each supporting a different interpretation of the market and a different strategy.
  • Senior team members spend more time qualifying their support than giving it.

Mary Ann Ireland, MA, MSC, is a coach, facilitator, and consultant working primarily with individuals, teams and organizations in the life sciences industry.  Clients call on Mary Ann when their team is not aligned with their business strategy or effectively executing on their plan.  This can be the result of many challenges, including limited trust, missing conversations, lack of accountability and weak coordination between team members.

Five years ago, Mary Ann co-founded The Stratam Group, a leading-edge consulting firm that uses Commitment-based Management (CbM) methodology to improve the communication and coordination efforts in life science and technology companies.  Her clients have included Elan, Roche, Johnson & Johnson, Portola Pharmaceuticals, Theravance, Cisco, MedAmerica, Life Technologies Inc., Chiron (currently Novartis), Elavon, and TrendMicro.  Prior to Stratam, Mary Ann successfully worked in positions of sales, marketing and consulting for more than twenty years.

In addition to a degree in organic chemistry from Brown University and a M.A. in Organizational Psychology, Mary Ann also holds four coaching certifications.  She is a master somatic coach (MSC) through the Strozzi Institute, and is certified in management and leadership practices through the Institute of Generative Leadership. Mary Ann founded the Biotech Organizational Learning and Development (BOLD) group in November of 2003, and leads this 90+ member best practice organization.

Jerry Iwata

Mr. Iwata has over 18 years experience in structuring and underwriting debt financing to private and public companies. While at Comerica, he has been involved in financing as little as $250,000 to a Series A pre-revenue company, and up to $100 million in a bank debt syndication to a public company to fund acquisitions. He joined Comerica Bank in 2001 through Comerica’s acquisition of Imperial Bank. Mr. Iwata had been part of Imperial Bank’s emerging growth division which was focused primarily on debt financing to venture backed companies. He currently heads the bank’s life science practice in Northern California responsible for lending to venture and public life science companies as well as managing the relationship with life science venture firms in Northern California. Prior to joining Comerica Bank, he spent 10 years at Union Bank where he was a Vice President and Relationship Manager. While at Union Bank, Mr. Iwata was involved in providing growth financing to local and foreign owned companies in various industries. He holds a B.A in Economics from San Francisco State and M.B.A from San Diego State University.

Maryam Khotani

Maryam Khotani is an in-house attorney with Sutter Health’s Office of the General Counsel. She handles transactions and provides counsel to Sutter Health and its affiliates in matters related to intellectual property and research, including: patent and licensing of intellectual property resulting from research, technology transfer, clinical trials, sponsored research, biospecimen banking, biological materials transfers, research data transfers, along with other issues involved in research compliance generally.

Maryam studied pharmacy and worked as a clinical pharmacist at the Johns Hopkins Hospital and Health System. After finishing law school, she practiced as a patent attorney. Her previous experience as a life sciences patent attorney included: patent office prosecutions, strategic analyses of patent infringement and validity opinions, developing corporate policies for invention disclosures, intellectual property protection, trade secret protection, scientific publications, and biological materials transfers.

Maryam received her B.S., with high honors from University of New Mexico, School of Pharmacy, where she also received the American Society of Hospital Pharmacy Leadership Award. She received her J.D., from Golden Gate University where she also received the CALI Award for Excellence in Writing and Research.

Maryam is a member of ACCA, AIPLA, AHLA, and the state bar of California. She is licensed to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and also a registered pharmacist in Maryland and California.

Andrei W. Konradi

Andrei W. Konradi is an expert in small molecule drug discovery. Andrei can assist life-sciences entrepreneurs in the following areas.

  • Drug discovery feasibility assessment
  • Strategies to create chemical intellectual property
  • Definition of projects, milestones, and teams
  • Utilizing contract research

Andrei is an independent consultant serving several companies and nonprofit organizations. Formerly, Andrei was the leader of the medicinal chemistry group at Elan Pharmaceuticals. Most of Andrei’s experience is in the fields of inflammation and neurodegeneration, but more recently Andrei has been approaching cancer. Andrei has coinvented six drug candidates that already have been tested in clinical trials. Andrei is a coinventor on 61 issued US patents, and a coauthor of 38 scientific publications. Andrei was educated at The Scripps Research Institute (post-doctoral fellow), Berkeley (PhD), and MIT (SB).

Scott Korney

Scott Korney brings nearly 30 years of extensive experience at both creating strategic plans and optimizing facility operations. His areas of expertise include real estate transaction and occupancy/TI execution of over 1 million sq. ft. of life science R&D laboratory, GMP production and release facilities. Scott is well recognized in the Bay Area Life Science industry as an accomplished leader with expertise in Facilities Development, Operations, Environmental Health & Safety, Security, Site Services, Utilities/Sustainability Management, Asset Management, Regulatory Compliance and Capital Project Management. Scott has provided these outstanding services to leading worldwide pharmaceutical and research corporations as well as start-up ventures. Past employers include Plant Cell Research Institute (ARCO; Atlantic Richfield Company), Plant Research Technologies (Founder/COO), Scios Inc (Johnson & Johnson), Biotherapeutics and Bioinnovation Center (Pfizer). In August, 2010, Scott formed Optimum Management Group bringing his professional experiences to early-stage life science ventures and to companies in transition.

Natasha Leskovsek

Specialties: FDA regulatory counsel, including:

  • Strategy for drug and biopharmaceutical approval
  • Device and diagnostics pathways: 510(k), PMA, LDTs
  • When and how to seek advice from FDA
  • Compliance issues for clinical research and development

Natasha Leskovsek is a partner in the Business Department. She joined the firm in 2008 and is resident in the Washington, DC office. Ms. Leskovsek advises pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device and food/dietary supplement industry clients on FDA regulatory and clinical development matters. She also conducts regulatory diligence on behalf of entities investing in FDA-regulated companies. Before joining Cooley, Ms. Leskovsek was a shareholder at Heller Ehrman. Prior to entering the law, Ms. Leskovsek worked as a registered nurse in pediatric oncology research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and with adult medical and surgical patients. Ms. Leskovsek worked as a consultant for international pharmaceutical and biotech clients while attending Georgetown University Law Center. Her direct clinical trial experience in nursing and project management offers her a unique perspective in advising clients on the conduct of clinical trials in product development and postmarketing studies. She has authored numerous healthcare and FDA-related publications and regularly speaks on a broad range of FDA regulatory topics for national conferences and meetings. Ms. Leskovsek received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1996 and her M.B.A and M.P.M in 1991 from the University of Maryland, College Park. She received her B.S.N. from University of Maryland, Baltimore in 1989. Ms. Leskovsek is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and Maryland and is a member of the editorial advisory board of the Food and Drug Law Institute and a member of the American Health Lawyers Association.

Daniel E. Levy

Specialties: Chemistry Outsourcing Consultant to Emerging Life Science Companies including:

  • Design and implementation of medicinal chemistry programs;
  • Process design and route selection;
  • Chemistry outsource management (foreign and domestic);
  • Manufacturing (mg research grade to multi-kg cGMP).

Dr. Levy is an experienced organic/medicinal chemist having contributed to the design of novel therapeutic agents targeting cardiovascular disease, cancer and inflammatory disorders. In his over 20 years of contributing to the biopharmaceutical industry, Dr. Levy led interdisciplinary teams focused on kinase inhibitors, GPCR antagonists, matrix metalloproteinase inhibitors and cell adhesion molecules. His work is documented in almost 30 peer reviewed publications and over 11 issued/published United States patents.

Having held positions at Glycomed, COR Therapeutics and Scios, Dr. Levy’s most recent role was Director of Synthetic Chemistry at Intradigm Corporation designing novel nanopartical delivery vehicles siRNA-based therapeutics. He has broad experience in the chemistry of amino acids/peptides, sugars/carbohydrates, heterocycles, polyethylene glycols and lipids. As a consultant, Dr. Levy provides strategic guidance and program implementation services to companies interested in small molecule drug discovery/development, diagnostics, drug delivery and microfluidics. Set-up and management of outsourcing activities is a key service supporting these sectors. Additionally, he provides technical due diligence services, facilitates intellectual property development and supports the filing of grant application.

Dr. Levy received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his B.S. in chemistry from the University of California – Berkeley. He is the author/editor of three books addressing aspects of carbohydrate chemistry and mechanistic organic chemistry.

Seth Levy

Practice Highlights

  • Manages patent procurement for innovations in a variety of technical fields, including biotechnology and life sciences
  • Represents academic institutions in licensing intellectual property to the private sector and in structuring sponsored research agreements, material transfer agreements and inter-institutional agreements with nonprofit and for- profit collaborators
  • Represents emerging companies in intellectual property licensing and acquisitions
  • Supports intellectual property due diligence in connection with mergers and acquisitions for biotechnology and consumer products companies
  • Serves as outside general counsel for early-stage technology companies

Seth Levy, a patent attorney with a background in biological engineering, focuses on supporting technology transfer programs at academic institutions and working with technology-based companies across a range of matters. Seth represents clients in patent procurement, licensing and enforcement; in the coordination of complex research arrangements and resolution of related disputes; and in the negotiation of commercial transactions involving intellectual property.

Ted McCluskey

Ted McCluskey, MD/PhD was the 2011 President of Sand Hill Angels and has been on their Board of Directors for the past 5 years. In addition, he is currently a Clinical Consultant for Biotech, Diagnostic and Medical Device companies.  At Stanford, he is an advisor in the SPARK drug development program and to the medical device Program in Biodesign.   At BayBio he has helped with the entrepreneur pitching programs, helped in planning medical device events and is a BayBio Medical Expert.

Prior to consulting, Ted was Chief Medical Officer and Vice President of Clinical at a Stanford cardiovascular diagnostic startup - Aviir - for three years. Prior to that, he oversaw cardiovascular clinical development at Scios (a Johnson&Johnson Company) where he was responsible for their lead product Natrecor and for VEGF-121.  Prior to Scios, Ted was at Genentech for 8 years, overseeing clinical research on cardiovascular applications for TNKase,Bosentan, CathFlo Activase and for the anti-angiogenicophthalmic agent Lucentis. He led the clinical development for the cardiovascular application of VEGF-165 (vascular endothelial growth factor) by direct intra-coronary injection and has had extensive experience in both in-licensing and out-licensing projects. While at Genentech, he received additional training in Finance, Marketing and Management (Berkeley) and in Leadership and Strategy at an executive program at Harvard Business School.

Ted was trained as an interventional cardiologist (Cleveland Clinic) and was on the faculty of the University of Cincinnati for several years. Molecular biology and clinical cardiology training were at UCSF. His medicine residency was at Washington University in St. Louis as were his MD and PhD (Pharmacology). His undergraduate degree was in chemistry (with research honors) from Stanford.

 

Ann Mead

Ann Mead is an experienced biotech operations consultant with broad-based capabilities in facilities management, business process design, project management, contract administration and human resources. She was previously the Sr. Director of Adminstration at Medivation, Inc., an early stage therapuetics company with drug candidates in Phase 3 clinical trials for Alzheimer’s Disease and prostate cancer. Responsible for Facilities, Human Resources and Contract Administration, she helped grow the company from 30 to 110 employees, inaugurated full HR services, and managed three office expansions, including lease negotiation for a 64,000 sf office space. Prior to her work at Medivation, Ms. Mead provided operational management consulting to CoMentis, Inc., Corra Life Sciences and other Bay Area biotech companies. Ms. Mead is recognized for being highly resourceful in developing cost-efficient, scalable business infrastructure, and for exceptional skill at creating cross-functional collaboration in fluid, high intensity environments.

Prior to her work in biotech, Ms.Mead was a Vice President at Bank of America in the Capital Markets area. She managed financial products contract negotiating teams in London and San Francisco and was responsible for a $4 billion international loan portfolio. She also served as a key leader in a $1.5 billion debt restructuring for the Republic of Costa Rica, for which she devised and coordinated efficient operational procedures for 500 international banks, the World Bank, the IMF, the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Central Bank of Costa Rica. Ms. Mead played an ongoing role in developing bank-wide trading, operations and documentation policies and practices, improving business processes and work flows, and enhancing cross-functional communication. She also worked in Human Resources at Bank of America and at Goldman Sachs in New York, where she gained experience in recruiting, compensation and employee relations.

Ms. Mead has served on a number of non-profit boards and working committees, including BayBio NEST, Women Leaders in Healthcare and Technology and New Langton Arts. She received an MS in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and a BA in Comparative Literature and Russian Language from UC Berkeley, where she was a Rhodes scholarship nominee.

Dave Nellesen

Dave Nellesen is a Vice President at Analysis Group, a leading economic consulting firm, and has broad experience in consulting, applying a range of strategies to commercialize products for the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, molecular diagnostics, and medical device industries.

Dr. Nellesen specializes in helping clients prepare for market access and reimbursement challenges in the U.S. and other major markets. His work spans reimbursement strategy, economic analysis, and market and payer research. Projects are often designed to generate new evidence demonstrating the value of new technologies to payers, using health economic models, systematic reviews, evidence compendia, and value dossiers, often resulting in peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Nellesen has extensive experience in oncology, having supported the development, launch or commercialization of more than 10 currently marketed oncology products. Prior to joining Analysis Group, Dr. Nellesen worked for several years as senior scientist and manager at Incyte, and has more than 14 years’ experience in the biotechnology industry as a scientist and management consultant. Dr. Nellesen received his PhD from UCSD and his MBA from UC Berkeley (Haas).

Marsha Roberts

Marsha has extensive experience as a human resources executive in US and international businesses. She is a co-founder of Lapis Group, Inc., a human resources management consulting firm whose clients include a number of life sciences companies (www.lapisgroupinc.com). Before starting the consulting practice, Marsha led HR for Gilead Sciences for eight years. During her tenure there, she introduced a full scope of HR programs company-wide and directed HR aspects of several merger/acquisition and divestiture activities. Before joining Gilead, she was an independent HR consultant working with a variety of companies on organizational development, compensation and employee communications initiatives. Marsha previously held senior HR positions at Bank of America, including leading the HR functions for Asia and Latin America, overseeing compensation for the entire US, and managing executive compensation and executive staffing world-wide. Marsha currently heads up BoardMatch Marin, a pro bono recruiting and placement service for Marin nonprofit boards.

Jeffrey Selman

Jeffrey Selman is a partner in the San Francisco office of Crowell & Moring. He graduated from Columbia University School of Law in 1990 and is a former Vice Chair of the State Bar of California’s Business Law Section. Mr. Selman has extensive experience in general transactional representation of life sciences, technology and clean technology private and public companies with an emphasis on general corporate and securities matters, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, and intellectual property licensing and collaborative arrangements. He represents start-up and venture capital–backed life sciences, technology and clean technology companies on formation, equity and debt financing, restructurings, board and management issues, licensing, mergers and acquisitions, and general corporate and commercial transactional matters. He has also worked with many companies that have been spun out of research institutes. In addition, he advises public companies reporting under the ‘34 Act on general transactional matters, including financings, mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions, board and management issues, SEC and national exchange compliance, investor relations, corporate governance, including under the Sarbanes Oxley Act, and board committee investigations. He has been counsel on transactions that have involved in excess of a billion dollars in the aggregate.

Laura Smoliar, Ph.D.

Laura Smoliar specializes in the commercialization of technology – helping customers identify specific needs and continuing through design and development of real-world solutions to production and packaging of specialized products. Outsourcing is a particular area of Laura’s expertise: management of key supplier relationships and leveraging manufacturing partners to accelerate time-to-market; creation of supply chain functions to support predictable manufacturing while minimizing inventory; and management of cross-functional teams as well as technology transfer processes across companies, including overseas partners. A leader of three start-ups – including her current role as CEO of Peppertree Engineering – Laura’s work experience in Silicon Valley, Asia, and Europe provides a decidedly international perspective, in-depth knowledge of the fundraising process from seed funds through Series C, and insight into patent portfolio management including original filing in the U.S. and overseas. A mentor to science graduates since 1997, Laura also serves as a trusted expert advisor to venture capital and equity investment firms and to technology start-ups.

Stephen Thau

Stephen Thau is a partner in Morrison & Foerster’s Palo Alto office and former co-chair of the firm’s Life Sciences Group. His practice focuses on the representation of life science, medical device, and other technology companies at all stages of their life cycles, from company formation, equity and debt financing, merger and acquisition transactions, to strategic alliances and public offerings. He also represents venture capital and investment banking firms in public and private financing transactions. He has represented companies and investors in more than one hundred venture capital and debt financing transactions, as well as in numerous public offerings and public and private M&A transactions. In 2008, Mr. Thau re-joined Morrison & Foerster after having practiced corporate law for ten years at Venture Law Group and Heller Ehrman LLP. He began his legal practice as a patent and securities litigator at Morrison & Foerster and served as a law clerk to the Hon. Vaughn R. Walker in the United States District Court in the Northern District of California. Mr. Thau earned his J.D. from Stanford University, where he was elected to the Order of the Coif and was managing editor of the Stanford Law Review. He earned his A.B. in Biology from Harvard University, magna cum laude.

Gregory Theyel

Specialties:

  • Technology review and assessment
  • Production planning and control
  • Bill of materials and supply chain development

Gregory Theyel is the Program Director for the East Bay Biomedical Manufacturing Network. He assists biomedical companies with business, technology, and production planning. Gregory has worked for over 15 years with large and small biomedical and energy technology companies, and he is the founder and president of Green Visions, which assists companies with engineering, strategic planning, and fund-raising. He has advised a long-term venture capital client by conducting due diligence analysis of start-ups to facilitate the investment of a venture fund. Gregory earned a doctorate from Clark University, has published widely in operations, management, and technology journals, and is frequently invited to teach courses internationally, including in Singapore, Hong Kong, Brazil, and Germany. He conducts research on the value of manufacturing and the development and diffusion of advanced manufacturing technology.

Jennifer Troia

Jennifer Troia has been sharing her expertise in the area of Human Resources as a professional consultant to organizations within the biotechnology industry since September 2009. Previously, Ms. Troia spent a year as Vice President, Human Resources, at CoMentis, Inc., and before that, she served as Vice President, Human Resources and Corporate Operations at Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where she held leadership positions of increasing responsibility since January 2001. She worked with COR Therapeutics between 1996 and 2001, playing a pivotal role in hiring a national sales force of more than 100 employees. With over 20 years of experience in Human Resources, she has also held positions at Gilead Sciences as well as in the high technology and investment banking industries. Prior to that, she was employed at 3M for seven years. Ms. Troia is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management and the Northern California Human Resource Association, and she has been serving on the Board of Directors of the Bay Area Human Resource Executives Council since 2004. In addition, Ms. Troia is a past chair of the Biotechnology Industry Organization’s Human Resources Conference. She holds a Masters in Human Resources and Organization Development from the University of San Francisco and is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) by the Human Resource Certification Institute.