Fireside Chat Speakers

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014 | 10:30 a.m. - 11:25 a.m. | Twin Peaks North/South


Ken Drazan, MD

Head, Johnson & Johnson Innovation, California

Ken is Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation, California.  His background includes more than 13 years in the healthcare industry and 12 years in the hospital and academic worlds.

A liver transplant surgeon by training, Ken spent several years at Stanford University before moving into entrepreneurial leadership roles in the biopharmaceutical industry and subsequently in the venture capital world. Ken’s deep background in science, his business experience, and his strong ties to the Bay Area life science community provide a unique combination of skills and expertise to his leadership of the California Innovation Center. 

Previously, Ken co-founded Bertram Capital Management in 2006. He served as General Partner of this family of growth equity funds focused on middle market equity investments in business services, consumer products, light manufacturing, and healthcare services. He was also Co-Founder and Chairman of EnGen Bio, a virtual company focused on novel therapeutics in infectious disease and oncology. 

Ken has held a variety of entrepreneurial leadership positions, including Founder, Chief Executive Officer, and Director of Arginox, a venture-backed company developing nitric oxide targeted medicines for critical care. He also held executive positions at Genesoft Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company that developed anti-infective therapeutics in collaboration with the Department of Defense and for consumer markets. 

Ken earned his B.A. in Economics from Yale College and received his M.D. Cum Laude from State University of New York. He completed his residency and Postdoctoral Fellow at UCLA Medical Center, with a focus on surgery and microbiology. 

Moderator: Deepa R. Pakianathan, PhD, General Partner, Delphi Ventures

Deepa joined Delphi Ventures in 2001 and leads the firm's biotechnology investment activities.

Deepa served on the boards of Salmedix (a.b. Cephalon in 2005), Ilypsa (a.b. Amgen in 2007), Proteolix (a.b. ONXX in 2009) and PTC Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: PTCT) and led Delphi's investment in Seattle Genetics (Nasdaq: SGEN).

Prior to joining Delphi, Deepa was a Vice President in the healthcare group at JP Morgan where she was involved in healthcare M&A transactions worth in excess of $6 billion and public offerings for biotechnology companies that raised more than $9 billion in capital.

From 1997 to 1998, Deepa was a biotechnology research analyst at Genesis Merchant Group. She worked as a postdoctoral scientist in the Immunology Department at Genentech Corporation from 1993 to 1997, where she evaluated chemokines and chemokine receptors as targets for therapeutic intervention.

She serves on the Board of Trustees of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014 | 2:00 p.m. - 2:55 p.m. | Twin Peaks North/South


Nick Leschly

President & CEO, bluebird bio

Nick Leschly has served as bluebird bio’s president and chief executive officer since September 2010. Previously, he served as interim chief executive officer from March 2010 to September 2010. Formerly a partner of Third Rock Ventures, L.P. since its founding in 2007, Mr. Leschly played an integral role in the overall formation, development and business strategy of several of Third Rock's portfolio companies, including Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Edimer Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Prior to joining Third Rock, he worked at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc., leading several early-stage drug development programs and served as the product and alliance leader for VELCADE. Mr. Leschly also founded and serves as chief executive officer of MedXtend Corporation. He received his B.S. in molecular biology from Princeton University and his M.B.A. from Wharton Business School. He currently serves as a member of the Biotechnology Industry Organization board.

 

Moderator: Chris Collins, Principal, Healthcare Investment Banking, Piper Jaffray

Chris Collins is a principal in the Piper Jaffray healthcare investment banking group covering biotechnology companies. He is based in the firm’s San Francisco office.

Prior to joining Piper Jaffray in June 2014, Collins was a senior calling officer in the global healthcare groups at Citigroup and Credit Suisse where he focused on biotechnology companies.  During his time at Citigroup and Credit Suisse, he successfully represented biotechnology clients in transactions with an aggregate transaction value exceeding $24 billion, including over $13 billion of M&A and over $11 billion of capital markets transactions. Prior to Citigroup and Credit Suisse, Collins was on the buy-side for more than eight years, more recently as a founder and portfolio manager at CPC Capital Management, a long/short healthcare-focused hedge fund. Before CPC Capital Management, he was an associate at Frazier Healthcare Ventures, a leading biotechnology venture capital firm with over $2 billion of assets under management, for five years. Collins helped start and invest in a number of successful biotechnology companies while a venture capitalist. Prior to Frazier Healthcare Ventures, he was an analyst in the global healthcare group at Morgan Stanley.

Collins holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Stanford University and a master’s degree in biotechnology from Johns Hopkins University. He is also a CFA® charterholder.