Management

Derrick Rossi, PhD
President and Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Rossi is a biotechnology entrepreneur who has been involved in multiple successful biotechnology ventures. Dr. Rossi is the founder of Moderna Therapeutics, and co-founder of Intellia Therapeutics, Magenta Therapeutics, and Stelexis Therapeutics. He was also a Professor at Harvard Medical School and Harvard University, as well as an investigator at Boston Children’s Hospital where he led an academic team working on stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. His efforts in the development of cutting edge technologies and new therapeutic strategies are at the forefront of regenerative medicine and biotechnology. Time magazine named Dr. Rossi as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the world (Time 100) in 2011. Dr. Rossi earned his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from University of Toronto, and his PhD from the University of Helsinki. 

 

Tracy Saxton, PhD, MBA
Chief Business Officer

Dr. Saxton has held investment positions with Pivotal bioVenture Partners, the Roche Venture Fund and SV Life Sciences Advisers. Dr. Saxton has served on the Board of Directors of SutroVax, Iterum Therapeutics, Entasis Therapeutics, Millendo Therapeutics, Lumos Therapeutics, Mission Therapeutics and PanOptica.  Dr. Saxton previously held positions at Tularik (acquired by Amgen) and Threshold Pharmaceuticals. She began her career as a drug discovery scientist and moved to leadership roles in Regulatory Affairs, Clinical Development and Project Management. Dr. Saxton earned her PhD in Medical Genetics from the University of Toronto, her MBA from Columbia University. 

Steven Landau, MD
Chief of Development and Co-Founder

Dr. Landau has extensive experience in pharmaceutical development, including Vedolizumab with Leukocyte/Millenium, SHP-141 with Shape Pharmaceuticals, and Ten-010 with Tensha Therapeutics. Dr. Landau received his B.A. from Bowdoin and his MD from Case Western Reserve University.  In Addition, Dr. Landau performed post-graduate training in Internal Medicine at the Beth Israel Hospital, Boston and Gastroenterology at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston.

Founders

Paul Tesar, PhD
Co-Founder

Dr. Tesar is a leader in the regenerative medicine field with numerous awards including the International Society for Stem Cell Research Outstanding Young Investigator Award in 2015 and the New York Stem Foundation – Robertson Stem Cell Prize in 2017.  He is an Associate Professor and the Dr. Donald and Ruth Weber Goodman Professor of Innovative Therapeutics at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences.  Dr. Tesar's laboratory works at the interface between stem cell biology and developmental neuroscience with a focus on regenerative therapies for disorders of myelin.  Dr. Tesar received his B.S. in biology from Case Western Reserve University and his PhD from the University of Oxford.

Drew Adams, PhD
Co-Founder

Dr. Adams is an interdisciplinary scientist working at the interface of chemistry and biology.  He is an Assistant Professor and the Thomas F. Peterson, Jr. Professor of Novel Therapeutics at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences.  His lab recently articulated a central mechanism by which small molecules enhance oligodendrocyte formation and remyelination (Nature, 2018). Dr. Adams completed his BA in biochemistry at Swarthmore College and his PhD in organic chemistry at Harvard University.  Before joining CWRU, Dr. Adams' postdoctoral studies with Dr. Stuart Schreiber at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT allowed him to develop deep expertise in chemical biology and drug development.

 

Research & Development

Brad Lang, PhD
VP of Research

Dr. Lang has extensive background in drug discovery and development of therapeutics for neurological diseases and injuries.  Previously, Dr. Lang served as a scientist on the regenerative medicine team at Athersys focused on clinical advancement of its MultiStem system for ischemic stroke. In addition, he characterized Intracellular Sigma Peptide, which is currently being advanced as a therapeutic option for spinal cord injury. Dr. Lang received his B.S. in Biology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his PhD in Neurosciences from Case Western Reserve University.

Samantha Stubblefield, PhD
Director of Research

Dr. Stubblefield’s background is in drug discovery and development for retinal, neurological, and inflammatory disorders.  Most recently, Dr. Stubblefield worked at Harrington Discovery Institute helping to guide academic drug discovery programs through the development pathway. She also served as a senior scientist at Athersys focused on development of new clinical indications for MultiStem and development of mechanism of action and potency assays. Dr. Stubblefield received her B.S. in Biology from the University of Akron and her PhD in Molecular Biology from Case Western Reserve University.

Dan Factor, PhD
Scientist

Dr. Factor is a scientist with a research focus on stem cell models of development and disease. He earned his B.A. in biochemistry from Hiram College and his PhD in Genetics and Genome Sciences from Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Factor was awarded the Joy Cappel Young Investigator Award in 2014 and the Arthur F.W. Hughes Award for Developmental Biology in 2018.

 

Board of Directors

Bill Sanford
Chairman of the Board

Mr. Bill Sanford is an experienced health-care executive who has focused on scientific development.  Mr. Sanford was the founding CEO of Steris, where he grew the Mentor-based medical equipment organization into a global enterprise. He was the founding chairman of BioEnterprise Corporation, and chaired the board of Greatbatch, NanoScale and Symark.  In addition, he serves as a Board Member and Advisor to numerous for-profit and not-for-profit organizations, including The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Case Western Reserve University, BIOMEC Inc., Primus Venture Partners, Supplierlnsight, LLC and several early stage technology companies. 

Ronn Richard
 

Mr. Ronald B. Richard (Ronn) is the Chief Executive Officer and President of the Cleveland Foundation.  Previously, Mr. Richard was the President and CEO of Stem Cell Preservation Technologies and the President of North American R&D for Panasonic. He served as Chairman of the Board of trustees of the International Biomedical Research Alliance, an academic joint venture among the NIH, Oxford University and Cambridge University. Mr. Richard has an M.A. in International Relations from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. in History from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. Mr. Richard holds an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Notre Dame College and Baldwin Wallace University.

Derrick Rossi, PhD
President and Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Rossi is a biotechnology entrepreneur who has been involved in multiple successful biotechnology ventures. Dr. Rossi is the founder of Moderna Therapeutics, and co-founder of Intellia Therapeutics, Magenta Therapeutics, and Stelexis Therapeutics. He was also a Professor at Harvard Medical School and Harvard University, as well as an investigator at Boston Children’s Hospital where he led an academic team working on stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. His efforts in the development of cutting edge technologies and new therapeutic strategies are at the forefront of regenerative medicine and biotechnology. Time magazine named Dr. Rossi as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the world (Time 100) in 2011. Dr. Rossi earned his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from University of Toronto, and his PhD from the University of Helsinki. 

Drew Adams, PhD
Co-Founder

Dr. Adams is an interdisciplinary scientist working at the interface of chemistry and biology.  He is an Assistant Professor and the Thomas F. Peterson, Jr. Professor of Novel Therapeutics at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences.  His lab recently articulated a central mechanism by which small molecules enhance oligodendrocyte formation and remyelination (Nature, 2018). Dr. Adams completed his BA in biochemistry at Swarthmore College and his PhD in organic chemistry at Harvard University.  Before joining CWRU, Dr. Adams' postdoctoral studies with Dr. Stuart Schreiber at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT allowed him to develop deep expertise in chemical biology and drug development.

Paul Tesar, PhD
Co-Founder

Dr. Tesar is a leader in the regenerative medicine field with numerous awards including the International Society for Stem Cell Research Outstanding Young Investigator Award in 2015 and the New York Stem Foundation – Robertson Stem Cell Prize in 2017.  He is an Associate Professor and the Dr. Donald and Ruth Weber Goodman Professor of Innovative Therapeutics at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in the Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences.  Dr. Tesar's laboratory works at the interface between stem cell biology and developmental neuroscience with a focus on regenerative therapies for disorders of myelin.  Dr. Tesar received his B.S. in biology from Case Western Reserve University and his PhD from the University of Oxford.

 

Advisors

Jeffery Cohen, MD
Chair of the Clinical Advisory Board

Dr. Cohen is Professor of Medicine (Neurology) in the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine and Staff Neurologist at the Cleveland Mellen MS Center, where he is Director of Experimental Therapeutics.  He has had a leadership role in many clinical trials in the multiple sclerosis field, including having served as Global Principal Investigator for TRANSFORMS (fingolimod), ACT (Avonex), IMPACT (Avonex), GATE (glatiramer acetate), and RADIANCE (ozanimod).  Dr. Cohen received his undergraduate degree in Zoology from Connecticut College and his MD from the University of Chicago.

Robert Miller, PhD
Chair of Scienctific Advisory Board

Dr. Miller is a professor of Anatomy and Cell Biology, the Vivian Gill Distinguished Research Professor, and Senior Associate Dean for Research at The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. His work has contributed greatly to the understanding of neural diseases through a focus on cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating glial cell determination in the CNS. Dr. Miller received a Bachelor’s degree and PhD in Zoology from University College London.

Blane Walter
Advisor and Board Observer

Mr. Walter is a Partner at Talisman Capital Partners, a private investment partnership. He was the founder of inChord Communications, Inc., which he built into the largest independently-owned, healthcare communications company in the world.  In 2005, inChord was acquired by Ventiv Health, the largest provider of outsourced sales and clinical services serving the pharmaceutical industry to create inVentiv Health.  Mr. Walter serves as Chairman of the Governor of Ohio’s Executive Workforce Board, Chairman of the Board of Columbus College of Art and Design and is a director of Helius Medical Technologies. Mr. Walter graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing and Finance from Boston College.

180517CTGroupShots0005_R.jpg