The BioCT Leadership and Board of Directors brings industry expertise, advice, and support to the Connecticut bioscience community. This team looks forward to serving as mentors and advisors to our members.
President & CEO,
Jodie Gillon brings over 25 years of experience in large pharma & biotech having started her career in advocacy and hospitals, in the US and abroad. With vast expertise leading key functions, she is sought after as an advisor to Incubators and Innovation Centers, and as a consultant for biotech, AI, RWE, digital health, and non profit organizations.
Jodie most recently served as the SVP of Corporate Affairs and Patient Advocacy building out the Patient, Medical, and Corporate Affairs functions at Peptilogics, a Phase I and Machine Learning start up. She previously served as the Chief Patient Officer and Head of Clinical Affairs Affairs at Abeona Therapeutics, a cell and gene therapy company. Prior to joining Abeona, Jodie cumulatively spent over a decade with Pfizer as the Global Medical Lead, Patient Engagement, for the Rare Diseases Business Unit and the Director, Medical Communications, within the Chief Medical Office. Prior to Pfizer, Jodie was the Head of Patient Advocacy and Professional Affairs with Achillion Pharmaceuticals where she led Policy, Alliances, Patient Engagement, Contributions/Grants, Compassionate Use, Medical Information, Medica Communications, Field Medical, and External Affairs. Previously she served as the Head of the Chief Medical Office (CMO) of AstraZeneca, where she managed Patient Engagement, Compassionate Use, Trial and Payment Transparency, Meetings and Events, an HCP Engagement Center, Companywide policy, External contributions, Alliances, and Crisis management. Jodie held additional roles as the Global Communications lead at Novartis, Director of Medical Education for Oridion Medical and as a Health Economist with the Israeli Center for Disease Control and Ministry of Health.
She holds a Master’s of Public Health with a dual degree in Health Economics and Epidemiology from Hebrew University in Jerusalem and a BSFS from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service. She currently serves on several industry wide Boards and Committees, has published and spoken externally across a wide variety of topics and mentors students and female professionals across our industry. While a native New Yorker, Jodie fell in love with New Haven while at Achillion and is proud to call Connecticut her permanent home for three years now. She is eager to contribute to the budding ecosystem here and welcomes you to connect with her.
Paul Hughes, J.D.
Partner, Wiggin and Dana, LLP
Paul Hughes is the Managing Partner, Co-Chair of the Emerging Companies and Venture Capital Practice Group and former Chair of the firm’s Corporate Department. He also practices in the Health Care Department. He is experienced with the representation and operation of both mature and emerging growth companies in a variety of industries, including energy and utilities, information technology, clean technology, telecommunications, biotechnology, health care services, manufacturing, and outsourcing.
Paul regularly represents clients in the areas of debt and equity financings, mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, strategic alliances, and corporate governance.
Paul has served as Vice President and General Counsel of a venture capital-backed pediatric health care services company and its pediatric clinical trials network. He was active in all aspects of business development, corporate strategy, and operations and was responsible for all of the companies’ legal affairs, including equity and debt financing transactions, mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, licensing, real estate leasing, and contract negotiations.
Chambers USA lists Paul as one of the leading corporate/M&A lawyers in Connecticut and adds that he offers experience of working with mature and emerging growth companies from a range of sectors, including biotechnology and telecommunications. He is also listed in Best Lawyers in the area of Private Equity Funds.
Paul was awarded his J.D. with honors from the University of Connecticut School of Law, where he served as an Articles Editor at the Connecticut Law Review. Following graduation, he held the position of law clerk to Justice Fleming L. Norcott, Jr. of the Connecticut Supreme Court. He earned his B.A. from the University of Connecticut. Paul is admitted to practice in Connecticut.
Stanley Choy, M.B.A.
Chair & Treasurer,
Stanley Choy has been a finance executive and business leader for over 20 years both in the pharmaceutical and legal industries. A bioscience entrepreneur, he was most recently Vice President, Finance and Administration of Kolltan Pharmaceuticals. Prior to joining Kolltan in 2009, Mr. Choy was the chief financial officer for a leading Am Law 100 law firm, Edwards Angell, Palmer & Dodge LLP. From 2003-2006, Mr. Choy served as financial controller with Shearman & Sterling LLP, managing the firm’s finance and accounting organization, including fiscal and reporting functions. Prior to joining the legal industry, Mr. Choy spent eleven years at Pfizer Inc., and held several senior finance management positions with Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, Inc., including finance director of business planning for the Consumer Health Care Division, finance director of the Asia & Latin America Region for the Animal Health Care Division, and finance director of the U.S. and Asia Region for the Corporate Finance and Treasurer’s Division. Mr. Choy spent four years at Arthur Andersen & Company in the audit and tax practices early in his career. Stan has an M.B.A. from Syracuse University and is a Certified Public Accountant. He is a member of the American Institute of CPA’s, NYS Society of CPAs, Law Firm CFO Group, and Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Finance and Tax Committee.
Abhijit (Jit) Banerjee, PhD, MBA
Associate Vice President, Innovation & Entrepreneurship,
University of Connecticut
Reporting to the Vice President for Research, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Dr. Banerjee supports UConn’s continued growth as an economic driver for the state of Connecticut by helping to set an agenda that defines the University’s program in technology commercialization. He is responsible for all aspects of the University’s technology commercialization activities, including patenting, licensing, venture development, and UConn’s business incubator, the Technology Incubation Program (TIP).
Robert Bettigole, MPPM
Elm Street Ventures
Rob is a Managing Partner of Elm Street Ventures, a New Haven based seed and early stage venture capital fund that he founded in 2006, working closely with the Yale Investment Office and with Yale’s Office of Cooperative Research (the tech transfer office). Since inception, ESV has invested in 27 companies, of which 16 have licensed Yale technology.
Rob serves as Chairman of P2 Science and is Elm Street’s observer on the board of Halda Therapeutics. Rob previously served as a board member of AxioMx, SeeClickFix, ShareGrove, and Retail Optimization Inc., and as an observer on the boards of Affomix Corporation, Arvinas, Device42, and Metagenomix. Mr. Bettigole has a BS in Engineering and Applied Science from Yale University and an MPPM from the Yale School of Management, where he has served as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence and as an Executive Fellow. He is a Licensed Professional Engineer and holds several U.S. and foreign patents. Mr. Bettigole served on the Operating Board of the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute from 2007 to 2017, and serves on the Investment Committee of the College Street Innovation Fund (formerly the YEI Innovation Fund), which is managed by Elm Street Ventures.
Josh Geballe, M.B.A.
Senior Associate Provost for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Yale University;
Managing Director, Yale Ventures
Josh Geballe is Senior Associate Provost for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Yale University and Managing Director of Yale Ventures. He is responsible for a wide range of services for students, faculty and the broader New Haven community to help launch new startups and provide training in entrepreneurship and innovation. Additional services include providing streamlined access to Yale intellectual property and sponsored research with Yale scholars, establishing partnerships to expand the impact of Yale discoveries, and growing the New Haven startup ecosystem.
Prior to joining Yale Ventures in 2022 Josh served as Chief Operating Officer for the State of Connecticut under Governor Ned Lamont. With responsibility for all executive branch agencies covering 30,000 employees he led successful initiatives to modernize state operations and expand the use of technology to improve services and reduce cost. In addition he led the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, establishing nationally recognized programs for testing, contact tracing, nursing home protection, safe school operations and vaccination.
Prior to his three years in public service Josh spent his career in the technology industry, most recently as CEO of Core Informatics, a venture-backed scientific software company that was acquired by Thermo Fisher Scientific where he went on to serve as Vice President and General Manager of Digital Science. Previously he spent 11 years at IBM in a variety of international executive roles.
Josh holds an MBA from the Yale School of Management and a BA from Yale University.
Cynthia D. Green, PhD, MBA
CT Innovations (CI)
Dr. Green is currently Managing Director at CT Innovations (CI), Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm and the leading source of financing and ongoing support for innovative, growing companies in CT. Previously, Cyndi led Search and Evaluation in Worldwide Business Development at Pfizer with responsibility for anti-infectives and vaccines, prior to that she was a lead scientist, then business and investor relations/marketing manager at CuraGen. Her technical leadership at Pfizer led to the formation of Pfizer/GSK spin-out, ViiV Healthcare, as well as the acquisitions of an anti-infective franchise from AZ and vaccine portfolios from Baxter and GSK. Cyndi’s expertise spans the spectrum of drug development in preclinical to marketed assets, technologies, diagnostics and research platforms. In addition to support of CI, she also currently mentors and provides consultant expertise for a variety of organizations, including ABCT, eLabNYC, Springboard Enterprises, and Endless Frontier Labs. Cyndi is currently a board member at CaroGen Corporation and a board observer for a variety of CI portfolio companies.
Prior to relocating back to CT, she was on the board of NewYorkBIO for over a decade and was instrumental in helping foster the growth of biotech in the area. Cyndi received a Doctorate in Molecular Biology at SUNY Buffalo, completed postdoctoral work at Yale University and received an MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
John G. Houston, Ph.D.
President & CEO,
John G. Houston is currently the President & CEO of Arvinas and has over 28 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech arena. Prior to this appointment, John was CSO and President of Research and Development at Arvinas. Before joining Arvinas, John was Senior Vice President of Specialty Discovery at Bristol-Myers Squibb where he worked for over 18 years in roles of increasing responsibility. He ran all of the disease science biology departments in research such as Oncology, Immuno-Oncology, Immuno-Sciences, Fibrotic Diseases, Genetically Defined Diseases, Neuroscience, Cardiovascular and Virology, as well as accountability for the various technology platform organizations such as Applied Biotechnology, Leads Discovery & Optimization, Genomics, Biologics Discovery California (formerly Medarex) and Zymogenetics in Seattle. For many years he was the global Disease Strategy Team co-chair for Neuroscience and the co-chair for the Neuroscience Early Assets development strategy. He was also the site head at the Wallingford, CT facility and a member of the BMS R&D Executive Committee reporting to the Head of Discovery. He also chaired the Target Portfolio Committee with governance accountability in the early research and development phase of the BMS portfolio.
With his teams and his BMS Research colleagues, he progressed over 180 compounds into early development, several of which have advanced into late stage clinical testing and beyond. He was a member of the BMS senior leadership team that achieved 14 NDA’s over a 10 year period.
John was also the principal architect and driver of the ‘Leveraging Technology’ initiative at BMS which oversaw the design and implementation of an industry leading integrated lead discovery and optimization process. This initiative created revolutionary changes in the discovery process at BMS with significant improvements in capacity, speed and cost control resulting in marked increases in research productivity and success rates.
Prior to joining Bristol-Myers Squibb, Dr. Houston worked at Glaxo Welcome Research and Development in the UK, where he served as head of the Lead Discovery Unit.
John completed post-doctoral studies with Professor Julia Douglas at Glasgow University, and obtained his Ph.D. with Professor Brian Catley in Microbial Biochemistry from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.
Raja Mangipudy, Ph.D.
Senior Vice President, Global Head of Drug Safety Research and Development, Groton Site Director,
Raja Mangipudy is responsible for all aspects of non-clinical safety for small molecules, large molecules, vaccines and animal care and welfare across all therapeutic areas and sites.
Prior to joining Pfizer, Raja was Vice-President of Nonclinical Safety Evaluation and Global Veterinary Sciences at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS). He also served as Site Head of the company’s nonclinical safety facilities at its New Brunswick, New Jersey, location which is a major hub for BMS. Raja was responsible for global nonclinical safety evaluation across modalities and therapeutic areas including Cardiovascular, Metabolic, Oncology, Immunoscience, Neuroscience, Fibrosis and Virology.
He earned his Ph.D. at Northeast Louisiana University (now University of Louisiana Monroe) and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology. Prior to BMS, Raja held positions at Merck, Sanofi, Pharmacia, Upjohn and, for a brief time at the beginning of his career, served as part of the Pfizer sales force in India.
David I. Scheer, M.S.
Scheer and Company
David Scheer is President of Scheer & Company, Inc., a firm founded in 1981, with activities in venture capital, corporate strategy, and transactional advisory services focused on the life sciences. Mr. Scheer was involved in the founding and had been a member of the Boards of Directors of ViroPharma, Inc. (NASDAQ, “VPHM”), OraPharma, Inc. (acquired by Johnson & Johnson in 2003), and Esperion Therapeutics, Inc. (of which he was Chairman, acquired by Pfizer in 2004). His current board relationships include Achillion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (of which he is Chairman, NASDAQ, “ACHN”), Aegerion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (of which he is Chairman, NASDAQ, “AEGR”), Tengion, Inc. (of which he is Chairman, OTC BB, “TNGN”) Axerion Therapeutics, Inc. (of which he is Chairman), and Optherion, Inc. (of which he is Chairman).
From 1991 through 1999, he was affiliated with the health care investing team at Oak Investment Partners. Mr. Scheer has also led or played a significant role in a series of transactions involving corporate alliances, licensing arrangements, divestments, acquisitions and mergers in the life sciences. He has served as a member of the Leadership Council of the Harvard School of Public Health, and as a member of the Advisory Committee to the Harvard Malaria Initiative.
He has helped to launch, and served as Chair of the Executive Committee for “The Unfinished Agenda in Infectious Diseases”, an initiative at the Harvard School of Public Health focusing on the neglected diseases. He has also been a member of the Global Advisory Council for AIDS@30, an initiative at Harvard, and an Advisor for the Global Task Force for Expanding Cancer Care and Control in the Developing World, another Harvard-affiliated initiative. He also serves as an advisor to the Rett Syndrome Research Trust. Since 2003, he has been a member of the Board of Trustees, and Vice-Chair for the Long Wharf Theatre, in New Haven, CT.
He is the founding Chair of the Global Health and the Arts series in New Haven, which for the past 5 years has been a collaboration between Long Wharf and Yale. In 2007, he was awarded the Atlas Award for Venture Capital from CURE, of which he also serves as a member of the Board and is on the Executive Committee), and in 2009, he received the Venture CapitalLeadership Award from the Connecticut Venture Group. In 2013, he was the recipient of the Yale Science and Engineering Association Award for Distinguished Service to Industry, Commerce, and Education.
He received his A.B. cum laude in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard College, and an M.S. in Cell, Molecular and Development Biology, from Yale University.
Head of Regulatory and Quality,
Jackie Schumacher is currently the Head of Regulatory and Quality at Rallybio where she is responsible for the regulatory strategy and operations across the portfolio along with Quality Assurance oversight. Prior to Rallybio, Jackie was the VP of Regulatory and Quality at Lyndra Therapeutics. Before Lyndra, Jackie spent most of her 35+ year career within Pfizer; starting as an analytical chemist followed by a long tenure within the CMC Regulatory organization in roles of increasing responsibility. She has led teams to develop successful global registration strategies for new small molecules, product enhancements, and complex/combination products and held regulatory leadership positions within the former Established Products Sterile Injectables organization. Within Pfizer she also expanded her experiences taking on business-facing/commercial roles for emerging markets and established products.
Jackie has served as a board member and chair for IPAC-RS, an industry consortium focused on strategic pharmaceutical and regulatory development objectives for orally inhaled and nasal drug products. She is currently on the board of directors for Women in the Enterprise of Science and Technology (WEST), a nonprofit dedicated to the advancement of women in science, technology, and engineering.
Jackie received a B.A. in chemistry and in classical studies from Hamilton College.
Eleanore Seibert, Ph.D.
Vice President, Drug Metabolism & Pharmacokinetics,
Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Eleanore Seibert is Vice President of Drug Metabolism & Pharmacokinetics within the Research and Development organization at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in Ridgefield CT. In this role, Eleanore leads a department of 80 scientists who are committed to developing novel therapeutics to advance healthcare for patients in need.
Eleanore joined Boehringer Ingelheim in 2004 as a Postdoctoral Associate. She subsequently held additional scientific and project management roles within R&D. Eleanore also served as a leader within the Medical organization at Boehringer Ingelheim in roles spanning project management, process improvement, and clinical trial execution before returning to R&D in 2019.
Eleanore earned a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in 2003 and a B.S. in Forensic Science from John Jay College of Criminal Justice in 1997. She is also certified as a Lean Six Sigma Blackbelt.
Erika Smith, M.B.A.
ReNetX Bio, Inc.
Erika Smith is the CEO of ReNetX Bio, a clinical stage, venture funded company in New Haven, CT, committed to advancing first-in-class, disease modifying therapy in the central nervous system. Over the past 25 years Erika has held key executive roles at leading life-science including Respironics (Philips Healthcare), Hyperion and IVAX.
She also launched and led the advancement of three separate successful investment funds including the $25M Blavatnik Fund for Innovation at Yale, YEI Innovation Fund and the Bio-Life Fund at the Center for Innovative Technology in partnership with Johnson & Johnson.
Erika was awarded “Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2019 by BioCT and Women of Innovation in 2020 by the Connecticut Technology Council. She is on the board of Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), Vice Chair of the Healthcare and Biotechnology Governor’s Workforce Council and an Entrepreneur in Residence at Technology Incubation Program (TIP) at UConn. She is an invited TedX presenter, taught life-science translational classes at the National Institutes of Health and Georgetown and co-authored a playbook for best practices of “Empowering Women Entrepreneurs” sponsored by JPMorgan Chase.
Erika holds a bachelor’s in Biomedical and Electrical Engineering and an MBA from Vanderbilt University.
J. Dormer Stephen, J.D.
Shipman & Goodwin, LLP
Dormer Stephen is Co-Chair of Shipman & Goodwin’s Business and Finance Practice Group.
Dormer handles venture capital and private equity and debt transactions, mergers and acquisitions and general corporate matters. His practice involves the representation of Fortune 500 companies, private equity funds, emerging companies and investment banks in structuring, negotiating and documenting seed through later stage equity and debt investments, mezzanine financings, syndicated credit facilities, mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures, buyouts, rollup strategies, intellectual property transactions, work-outs and financial restructurings and general corporate matters. Constituent companies are in a broad range of industries including financial services, insurance, life sciences, media, software and telecommunications. He also represents public and private clients in an “outside general counsel” capacity. Roles include counseling on strategic initiatives (such as joint ventures, joint development projects and intellectual property licensing and collaboration), commercial contract matters (such as distribution and supply agreements, license agreements and employment agreements) and other general corporate matters (such as employment and severance matters, equity incentive plans, corporate governance, real estate matters and insurance matters). As a member of the firm’s Opportunity Zones team, Dormer advises clients on various aspects of the Qualified Opportunity Zones program.
Prior to joining Shipman & Goodwin, Dormer was a Partner in the Corporate Department of Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP.
Healthcare Executive, Director & Co- Founder
Widely recognized as a Social Impact Leader and an expert in working to improve standards of care in healthcare, Kaile has spent her career elevating and progressing global healthcare through the introduction of groundbreaking products and disrupting conventional thinking in the global space.
Kaile began her career in the GE Global Leadership Development Program, and from there has enjoyed an illustrious 20+ years career in healthcare focusing on building, restructuring and transforming businesses that can create impact for patient care. She has expertise in launching global business divisions, converting standard of care across specialties, accelerating commercialization, restructuring organizations / turn-arounds and transforming cultures for high performance.
She is hailed by her peers as a “warrior for women and children,” has been recognized as a “Top Ten Chief Operating Officer Globally,” in 2021 and was awarded a coveted place as a “Top World Leader in Healthcare” in 2022.
Kaile has held a myriad of senior leadership positions in Fortune 50 companies such as Boston Scientific, Intuitive Surgical, GE Healthcare, Philips Healthtech and Change Healthcare. She has held various C Level positions in both private and publicly traded companies, as well as serving as a Director in both sectors. She has recently served in various C Level positions for venture capital / private equity backed companies in need of large-scale transformations. In addition to her many professional accomplishments, Kaile is also Co-Founder of the MAT Foundation which serves to eradicate late-stage diagnosis of female cancers.
Kaile is highly also active in our community and serves as a speaker for universities, an author for Worth Media and has been adorned with two State of Connecticut Proclamations that were awarded to her for her philanthropic work in advocation for women and work contributing to preventative disease. She has a deep network within the healthcare industry and is widely respected as a visionary that repeatedly leads the industry towards progression and advancement.