Board of Directors

Chairman of the Board

J. Kelly Ganjei

Kelly joined Cognate in 2011 as the Chief Executive Officer and has over 25 years of experience within the life science, venture capital, and IT sectors. He has guided companies through various stages of development, ranging from the virtual start-up to the mid-cap restart, through the exponential growth phase, and into a public exit.

Prior to joining Cognate, Kelly was a Principal at an SBA venture capital firm where he was recruited to create deal flow and provide leadership to several of their investments. The fund was highly focused on cell therapy investments and was an investor in Cognate. While in this role, he helped the venture capital firm exit the SBA program and was the key driver of several strategic deals for their portfolio companies.

Previously, Kelly was the CEO and Co-founder of RemeGenix, a company working on treatments for Alzheimer’s disease and traumatic brain injury. Prior to RemeGenix, he was the VP of Business Development at TissueGene. He and the executive team closed both Series A and B funding prior to the company being taken public. While there he was also responsible for developing the global informatics infrastructure for the company and its affiliates. Prior to TissueGene, as the key technical sales and marketing lead for LabVantage, he helped shape, develop and market their life science software product offering globally.

Shortly after graduating with a BS in Microbiology from University of Maryland, Kelly started his career in the T-Cell Molecular Biology Unit of the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Immunology at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease at the NIH. He had the distinct pleasure of working with and being mentored by Drs. Luciano D’Adamio, Ron Schwartz, BJ Fowlkes, Polly Matzinger, and others intensely engaged in a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms of the immune system.

J. Kelly Ganjei,
Chairman of the Board
Director

Evis Hursever

Evis Hursever joined EW in 2011 and is a Managing Director.

Dr. Hursever has served on the Board of Directors of EW growth equity portfolio companies EUSA Pharma, Biotoscana and Cognate BioServices, and has been a key member of the EW team for numerous growth equity investments.

Prior to joining EW, Dr. Hursever had over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. She was a senior manager in the European life sciences and healthcare team at LEK Consulting, a leading management consulting company. She was involved in several large business transactions in the healthcare space, developed growth strategies for several pharmaceutical companies, and led numerous due diligence assignments for private equity firms in the healthcare industry.

Prior to LEK Consulting, Dr. Hursever worked in the healthcare investment banking team at Merrill Lynch International providing M&A advisory services to a broad range of life sciences and healthcare companies.

Dr. Hursever received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Macalester College and her PhD from the University of Pennsylvania.

Evis Hursever,
Director
Director

Roger Kang

Roger Kang brings more that 25 years of experience as an operating executive in life science and biotech industries, including the therapeutic, diagnostic and device areas, as well as a background in investment and commercial banking.

 

Prior to joining Medivate, Mr. Kang co-founded L&J Biosciences, Inc., with a global vision focused on commercializing proprietary and innovative suite of protein related products and manufacturing platform in area of degenerative neurologic disorder and served as COO. Prior to L&J, he served as executive vice president of Medipost America, Inc. He was responsible for moving Medipost’s pipeline into clinical development in US and providing business development and strategic marketing plan for South America and Middle East region. Prior to Medipost, Mr. Kang spent 13 years with TissueGene, Inc. as COO, where as the first employee of the company, he established operations in US, and held various executive roles in the management of clinical study of Invossa™, the world’s first cell-mediated gene therapy product for treating degenerative osteoarthritis, currently in Phase 3 clinical trial in US. Mr. Kang also managed the closing of several tranches of Series A & B funding for TissueGene. Mr. Kang received his BA from Hanyang University.

Roger Kang,
Director
Director

Steven Kasok

Steve is an operationally oriented financial executive with broad life science expertise as well as experiences in a wide set of industries.  Most recently Steve co-founded Brammer Bio and served as a Board member and chief financial officer.  Prior to Brammer, Steve co-founded Gallus BioPharmaceuticals and was CFO.  Both Brammer and Gallus were acquired and are now part of Thermo Fisher Scientific.  In his CFO roles Steve had direct responsibility for finance, human resources, information technology, and the legal functions.  Before Brammer and Gallus, Steve served as vice president and treasurer of Millipore Corporation (acquired by Merck KGaA); chief financial officer of Cabot Supermetals, treasurer and business development officer at Haemonetics Corp., and held a variety of roles within Converse Inc. and GE. Steve earned a B.S. in finance from Clarkson University and a M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.  

Steve currently serves on the Boards of NearU HVAC Services and Cognate BioServices, Inc.

Steven Kasok,
Director
Director

Tim Moore

Tim Moore has more than three decades of leadership experience in biopharmaceutical manufacturing and operations. Mr. Moore is currently the President and Chief Operating Officer at PACT Pharma.  Prior to joining PACT, he served as Executive Vice President, Technical Operations at Kite, a Gilead Company, since March of 2016.  During this time Mr. Moore was responsible for overseeing the process development, manufacturing, quality and supply chain for the launch of Yescarta®, one of the first CAR T therapies to be developed, manufactured and commercialized, as well as advancement of the Kite pipeline.  In addition, Mr. Moore globally expanded the biopharmaceutical operations to serve and support the US, EU, as well as key partners in Asia.  Prior to Kite, Mr. Moore served as the Senior Vice President, Head of Global Technical Operations – Biologics of Genentech, Inc. and as a member of the Genentech Executive Committee since 2010. In this role, Mr. Moore oversaw global leadership for more than 7,500 professionals across 10 internal sites and over 37 contract manufacturing organizations, as well as global manufacturing and end-to-end quality supply performance of more than 20 biological product families. Prior to that, Mr. Moore was Genentech’s Senior Vice President, Global Supply Chain and Global Engineering from 2007 to 2010. Previously, Mr. Moore served as Vice President, Operations at ZLB Behring (formerly Aventis Behring). He is currently a member of ISPE, PDA and has been a part of the Executive Committee of BioPhorum and serves as a Board member for Cerus. Mr. Moore received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Tulsa University and a M.S. in Engineering Management from Northwestern University.

Tim Moore,
Director
Director

JC Renondin, MD, MBA

JC Renondin, (‘JC”)  MD, MBA;  is the healthcare Senior Investment Manager at OIA, the Oman Investment Authority– Prior to joining OIA, JC worked on healthcare investment at CDPQ, MDS Capital and CDC Innovation and investment banking at JP Morgan and Bryan Garnier in North America and in Europe. JC has successfully helped build and exited from several life science and healthcare companies to-date. He is on the board of the Innovation Development Oman a Venture capitalist firm and Juvenescence a longevity company in the UK.

JC Renondin, MD, MBA,
Director
Director

Michael Stella

Mike joined Cognate in 2007 and has over 22 years of extensive manufacturing and operations experience in the biotech industry. Prior to attaining the role of CBO, Mike served as Cognate’s Chief Operating Officer, responsible for overseeing the startup, on-going operations, and validation of the Memphis facility and overseas activities. He’s been instrumental in the identification and continuing establishment of a number of commercial-ready systems to support the manufacture of cell therapies at commercial scales.

Prior to joining Cognate, Mike served as Director of Operations at Cell Genesys, Inc. where he held responsibilities for manufacturing, facilities, environmental health and safety and clinical distribution for its Memphis facility. During his tenure at Cell Genesys, he was directly responsible for the site operations and clinical manufacturing of the Autologous GVAX Lung Cancer Immunotherapy in NSCLC and BAC. Before joining Cell Genesys, Mike served as regional manager for The Interstate Companies which was focused on the procurement and utilization of blood and blood components in therapeutic and diagnostic products.

Michael Stella,
Director
Director

Mike Warmuth

Mike Warmuth joined EW as an Operating Partner in the New York office in May 2018. Mr. Warmuth has spent his entire career with Abbott Laboratories, having joined on the manufacturing development program immediately after university.
Most recently, he spent five years as Executive Vice President, leading the Established Pharmaceuticals division, which is a leader in the sale of branded generics in emerging markets. The Established Pharmaceuticals division of Abbott is in the top ten largest generics companies globally, with revenues of >$4 billion. Mr. Warmuth held full P&L responsibility for this division, which covers several therapeutic areas including gastroenterology, women’s health, cardiovascular and metabolic disorders, pain and CNS, and respiratory drugs and vaccines. During his tenure, he led multiple M&A transactions at Abbott, including the acquisition of Chile-based CFR Pharmaceuticals for $2.9 billion in May 2014, followed by Russian pharmaceutical company, Veropharm, for $631 million in June 2014, as well as Piramal Healthcare’s prescription business for $3.7 billion in 2010, which added 350 drugs to Abbott’s portfolio.

Prior to Established Pharmaceuticals he spent almost three years as the Senior Vice President of Diagnostics, running Abbott’s global core laboratory diagnostics business. Prior thereto, Mr. Warmuth spent a brief period as GM for the Hematology division within the Diagnostics business unit. Before this, he was Vice President of the Global Engineering Services business. From 2004 to 2006, he was Division VP, Operations for the Quality and Global Pharmaceutical Operations team.

Mr. Warmuth received his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and his Master’s degree in Business Administration from Northwestern University.

Mike Warmuth,
Director