The Board is comprised of experienced and successful pharmaceutical and biotechnology executives and investors.
Donald Parfet, MBA
Chairman of the Board
Mr. Parfet chairs the Board. He is also the Managing Director of the Apjohn Group and General Partner of Apjohn Ventures Fund. Prior to founding the Apjohn Group, Don was a Senior Vice President at Pharmacia. At Pharmacia, Don's responsibilities included all of the associated businesses including Animal Health, Diagnostics, Pharmaceutical Commercial Services and Plasma Products. Additionally, Don oversaw the company's investments in Amersham Pharmacia Biotech and Biacore International AB.Don serves on the boards of directors of Kelly Services, Inc. and MPI Research, Inc. Don received his BA degree in economics from the University of Arizona in 1975 and his M.B.A. degree in finance from the University of Michigan in 1977.
Charles Bisgaier, Ph.D
Dr. Bisgaier has been a board director (since 2009), and currently is serving as the interim CEO and President of ProNAi Therapeutics (Sept 2010 to present). Dr. Bisgaier is also currently a Co-founder and Chief Executive Manager of Michigan Life Ventures, LLC, a private company created primarily to establish or assist early stage companies. Prior to Michigan Life Ventures, he was President of Pipex Pharmaceuticals (2006-2008); he was the Senior Director of Pharmacology at the Esperion Division of Pfizer Global Research and Development (2004-2006); he co-founded and was the Vice-President of Pharmacology at Esperion Therapeutics, Inc (1998-2004). Dr. Bisgaier was formerly an Associate Research Fellow in the Department of Vascular and Cardiac Disease at Parke-Davis, where he played a role in discovery and development of pharmaceuticals that modulate lipoprotein and cholesterol metabolism (1990-1998). There he participated in the discovery and development of LOPID, LIPITOR, AVASIMIBE and GEMCABENE. Dr. Bisgaier received a B.A. (1974) in Biology from the State University College at Oneonta, NY, and a M.S. (1977) and Ph.D. (1981) in biochemistry from George Washington University, Wash., D.C.
Robert Forgey, MBA
Mr. Forgey graduated Beta Gamma Sigma from Olin School of Business, Washington University in 2001. He holds both a Bachelor's and a Master's degree in Biology from the University of North Dakota. He has 15 years pharmaceutical industry experience in research and development with G.D. Searle, Pharmacia and Pfizer development. His responsibilities have been in molecular biology methods development, project support, business management and financial control of discovery research organizations. Mr. Forgey most recently served as Manager, Discovery Financial Business Administration/Senior Financial Analyst with Pfizer-Pharmacia. Prior to this he served as Leader, Oncology Operations in Pharmacia Discovery.
Mina Sooch, MBA
President and CEO
Ms. Sooch is a general partner at Apjohn Ventures and brings with her over a decade of pharmaceutical, healthcare, and chemical experience as an entrepreneur, strategy and finance advisor, and chemical engineer. She has led the investments in Asterand (Detroit), Nephros (Ann Arbor) and Afmedica (Kalamazoo). Ms. Sooch spent 8 years at Monitor Group, a top tier global strategy consulting firm serving Fortune 500, private, and public clients. Ms. Sooch received a MBA from Harvard Business School in 1993. She graduated summa cum laude with highest distinction from Wayne State University in 1989 with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering.
Jack Luderer, MD
Dr. Luderer has worked in the pharmaceutical industry for more than 20 years having held a series of executive positions resulting in worldwide experience involving all phases of clinical development with his most recent position having been Vice-President Medical Affairs at Pharmacia, Inc. He has supervised more than three hundred clinical trials across numerous therapeutic areas and drug classes including women’s health and oncology. He has global regulatory experience encompassing multiple IND and NDA filings and has assisted in the assessment and management of several acquisitions and license agreements. He is a founding partner of the Apjohn Group, currently serves, or has served, on the Scientific Advisory Boards of several startup companies including Afmedica, NephRx, NanoMed, SenseGene, Nephros and BioMedPharmIS. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Innovation Center of Southwest Michigan. Dr. Luderer has held academic positions at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, and the clinical faculty of the Michigan State University College of Medicine. He is Board Certified in both Internal Medicine and Clinical Pharmacology.
John J. Puisis, BS, MBA
John is a senior executive adept at transforming technology-based companies into value creating organizations. He combines a unique set of strategic, financial, talent management, and operating skills to identify growth and value opportunities, while optimizing an organization’s technology and talent. He was President and CEO of Third Wave Technologies (NASDAQ: TWTI), a Madison, WI-based biotechnology company, where he led the transition from a non-sustainable research tools business to a robust growth driven molecular diagnostics company. John also served as a strategic consultant to DEKALB Genetics Corporation which was ultimately sold for $2.8 billion. John was with the Spencer Stuart life sciences practice group where he consulted with biotech and pharmaceutical firms on strategy and implementation. John received his BS - Accounting from Northern Illinois University and his MBA at Northwestern University.