Occam places Lisa Deschamps as CEO of AviadoBio

Occam recently recruited Lisa Deschamps to AviadoBio. She takes the helm of this neuro gene therapy company based on the scientific research of Chris Shaw of King’s College London after having had a distinguished career at Novartis in a variety of senior executive management positions in neuroscience and gene therapy. In addition to bringing deep content knowledge to Aviado, Lisa has also provided leadership for the company’s recently successful $80 million financing, bringing in new investors including NEA. For more information, see here.

Occam Places Ed Koval as CBO at Geron

Occam is pleased to announce the placement of Ed Koval as EVP & CBO of Geron, a late-stage public biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of treatments for hematologic malignancies.

In his role at Geron, Koval will be a member of the Company’s Executive Management Committee and report to Dr. Scarlett. Koval will be responsible for business development, including evaluation and execution of out-licensing, in-licensing and strategic transaction opportunities.

Koval brings more than 25 years of biotech and pharmaceutical experience in business development and both in-licensing and out-licensing of products and platform technologies. Prior to joining Geron, Koval was the Chief Business Officer of ZebiAI Therapeutics, a company spun out of X-Chem Pharmaceuticals in order to discover and develop advanced drug discovery programs based on novel machine learning technologies, and which was recently acquired by Relay Therapeutics.

Prior to the spin-out of ZebiAI, he was Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, at X-Chem Pharmaceuticals, a drug discovery company, where he closed multiple transactions with multinational pharmaceutical companies for programs in oncology, hematology/oncology, inflammation, infectious disease and rare diseases.

Koval’s prior pharmaceutical experience also includes serving roles in business and corporate development, strategic planning, alliance management and financial evaluation and analysis at Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Merck & Co., Inc. and Chiron Corporation, where he finalized negotiations and executed and managed multiple strategic corporate partnerships and alliances.

Koval holds an M.Sc. in Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and an M.B.A. from the Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Occam Places Andreas Grauer as CMO at Federation Bio

Occam is pleased to announce the placement of Andreas Grauer as the CMO of Federation Bio, a Venrock-backed, next generation microbiome company based on the work of prolific Stanford academic Michael Fischbach pioneering a novel approach to create potent, durable and safe cell therapies.

Grauer, a highly tenured physician scientist and entrepreneurial executive with formidable clinical development experience across modalities and disease states, will be instrumental in giving shape to the dynamic microbial platform as FedBio enters the clinic with its lead program in 2022.

Grauer previously served as CMO at Corcept, overseeing clinical development programs in endocrinology and oncology, as well as metabolic and neurologic indications. Prior to Corcept, Dr. Grauer served as Vice President of Global Development at Amgen, leading clinical research efforts in bone, nephrology and inflammation. While at Amgen, he oversaw several large development programs spanning from early clinical research to FDA and international approvals and commercialization.

Grauer is an internist and endocrinologist by training. He received his medical education at the University of Heidelberg in Germany and at the Royal Postgraduate Medical School at the Hammersmith Hospital in London, UK, conducting subsequent clinical training at the University of Heidelberg. Dr. Grauer has authored more than 100 scientific publications and book chapters.

Occam Places Gino Van Heeke as CSO at LabGenius

Occam is pleased to announce the placement of Gino Van Heeke as CSO of LabGenius, a machine learning (ML)-driven protein engineering company. In this role, Gino will leverage his wealth of drug discovery and development experience to direct LabGenius’ scientific strategy. 

Van Heeke has forged a richly variegated career spanning large and small companies where his focus has cut across both large and small molecule drug discovery & development. His demonstrated success building and leading dynamic scientific teams in myriad settings coupled with translational creativity and entrepreneurial verve will serve LabGenius well as it seeks to automate large molecule drug discovery.

Van Heeke joins LabGenius from Engitix Therapeutics, where, as CSO, he established a portfolio of projects and initiated the company’s first drug discovery campaign. Before this, Gino was Senior Director, Discovery and Early Development at Ablynx where he led the discovery of NANOBODY® drug candidates and their transition to clinical development. Prior to his move into biotech, Gino held several senior positions at Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research over a 22-year tenure, including Executive Director for Biologics.

Dr. Edwin Moses, LabGenius Chairman commented “Gino’s expertise in translational research, coupled with LabGenius’ ML-driven drug discovery platform, is an excellent combination which I believe will further accelerate the company’s successful development.”

 

Occam Places Scott Myers on the Board of Dynavax

Dynavax Technologies Corporations, (Nasdaq: DVAX)biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing novel vaccines, today announced the appointment of Scott Myers to its Board of Directors and election as Board Chairman.

Scott has worked in the global pharmaceutical and medical technology industries for nearly three decades.  Most recently he was the Chief Executive Officer and served on the board of directors of AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where he led its turnaround and strategic sale to Covis Pharma in November 2020. Scott has served as Chairman of the board of directors of Rainier Therapeutics, Inc., an oncology biotechnology company focused on late-stage bladder cancer, from June 2018 to January 2020, and served as its Chief Executive Officer from September 2018 to January 2020. Prior to Rainier, Scott served as Chief Executive Officer, President and Director for Cascadian Therapeutics, Inc., an oncology company, from April 2016 through its acquisition by Seattle Genetics in March 2018. Scott is an independent director on the board of directors of Selecta Biosciences, Trillium Therapeutics, Inc. and Harpoon Therapeutics, Inc.

Scott holds a B.A. in Biology from Northwestern University and an M.B.A. from the Graduate School of Business (Booth) at the University of Chicago.

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Chris Gibson

CEO | Recursion Pharmaceuticals

"Occam has been a formidable recruiting partner for Recursion. Over the past three years, they have helped us make key additions to the senior executive team and Board. The firm has consistently provided a unique blend of nuanced and ethical judgement, tireless and creative effort, and strategic insight in helping us develop a holistic organizational plan as Recursion has evolved."
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Co-Founder & Managing Partner | Lux Capital

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Managing Director | Alta Partners

"Occam brings an uncommon mix of intelligence, discipline and instinct to executive recruiting. Building companies is more art than science; they bring both to the party. In enduring fashion, Occam has mastered the human side of venture capital."
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“Thorough, tireless, and professional, and they listen. Occam is a search firm that matches the entrepreneurial intensity of its clients. Results delivered with intelligence, urgency and style.”
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Recent Placements

Occam places Lisa Deschamps as CEO of AviadoBio

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Occam Places Ed Koval as CBO at Geron

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Occam Places Andreas Grauer as CMO at Federation Bio

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Occam Places Gino Van Heeke as CSO at LabGenius

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Occam Places Scott Myers on the Board of Dynavax

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The medieval philosopher William of Occam is the firm’s adopted patron saint. William spoke plainly and thought with rigor and humanity. These qualities yielded elevated ideas and also got him into a few punch-ups with the Holy See. His enduring concept, Occam’s Razor—“Lex Parsimoniae”—embodies an unrelenting focus on essentials in problem solving. His and our solutions strive for elegant simplicity.

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Occam Places Lisa Deschamps as CEO of AviadoBio

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Occam Places Ed Koval as CBO at Geron

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Occam Places Andreas Grauer as CMO at Federation Bio

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Occam Places Gino Van Heeke as CSO at LabGenius

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Occam Places Scott Myers on the Board of Dynavax

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Occam Places David Lynch as CBO of Strateos

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