Prabhavathi Fernandes, Ph.D., Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Prabhavathi Fernandes founded Cempra in January 2006 and has served as President and Chief Executive Officer and a Member of the Board of Directors since then. In 2012, she led the initial public offering and listing on Nasdaq for Cempra, and has successfully raised over half a billion dollars to date for the company, building value for its investors and taking its first antibacterial product candidate, solithromycin, from the bench to the NDA with the plan to launch the product in the U.S. She has licensed solithromycin in Japan to Toyama/Fujifilm. In addition, she has successfully obtained funding from BARDA, the biodefense arm of Health and Human Services in the U.S. for the development of solithromycin for use in pediatric patients and for biodefense. She has also established partnerships with the NIAID for the development of solithromycin. Her career of more than four decades has focused on anti-infectives, first in clinical microbiology and infectious diseases and then in pharmaceutical discovery and development. Prior to Cempra, Dr. Fernandes held executive leadership positions at pharmaceutical corporations including Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute, Abbott Laboratories and The Squibb Institute for Medical Research. During these years she was directly involved in the development of antibiotics, four of which have been approved with one, clarithromycin, achieving sales over a billion dollars. After leaving Bristol-Myers Squibb in 1997, she founded and led three biotechnology and CRO companies and was President and Chief Executive Officer of DarPharma, Ricerca and Small Molecule Therapeutics. Dr. Fernandes has served on the U.S. Congressional Panel for Assessment of Impact of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria and on the American Society for Microbiology Advisory Panel for Antibiotic Resistance. She has continued to work on policy matters to help in combating antibiotic resistance with IDSA and the Anti-infective Working Group. She serves on the editorial board of several journals, was a member of the Product Development working group for Biodefense for the NIAID, and was an Advisory Board Member of Optimer Pharmaceuticals, Inc. as well as the Supervisory Board of GPC Biotech. She has authored over 250 publications and numerous reviews and book chapters. She received her Ph.D. in microbiology from Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia.
Mark W. Hahn, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Hahn has over 25 years of experience as a senior financial executive in biotechnology and high technology companies. he has conducted over $500 million in financial transactions for both public and private companies. Prior to joining Cempra, Mark was CFO of Athenix Corp., a leading agricultural biotechnology company where he led the company in its $400 million merger with Bayer CropScience. He previously was the CFO of several rapidly growing technology companies including BuildLinks, Inc. and Charles & Colvard, Ltd., where he led the growth of the firm from three to 75 employees and spearheaded that company's IPO. Mark began his career with Ernst & Young. Mr. Hahn holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accouning and Finance from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Maryland.
David Moore, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer
Mr. Moore is responsible for commercial development. He has spent over 15 years developing and managing pharmaceutical commercial programs, with the majority of those years spent with the Ortho-McNeil and Janssen Pharmaceutical divisions within Johnson & Johnson. Mr. Moore has held leadership roles in key sales and marketing functions, and was part of teams that developed and executed launch plans for several prescription pharmaceuticals for both primary and acute care settings. He developed payer value platforms for several therapeutic areas including antibiotics, pain and women’s health, in which he successfully implemented pricing and reimbursement strategies with hospitals and managed care organizations. Following Johnson & Johnson, he was chief business officer and vice president of Worldwide Commercial Operations of Tranzyme, Inc., where he was responsible for building the commercial organization as well as in- and out-licensing clinical-stage assets and was chief business officer of Ocera Therapeutics where he was responsible for developing the commercial plans for an Orphan-designated advanced liver disease product for both the community and acute care markets. Mr. Moore received his B.Sc. in Biology from Towson University and an M.B.A. from Lehigh University, and a second graduate degree in Health Policy Excellence from Thomas Jefferson University.
David Oldach, M.D., FIDSA, Chief Medical Officer
David Oldach joined Cempra Pharmaceuticals in 2011. Between 2006 and 2011, Dr. Oldach directed clinical research at Gilead Sciences, Inc., where his drug development experience ranged from IND/first-in-human trial development and execution through NDA-supportive Phase 3 protocol development and execution. Dr. Oldach received his Medical Degree, Magna Cum Laude, from the University of Maryland School of Medicine and completed a residency in Internal Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital. He completed an Infectious Disease Fellowship at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, serving under John Bartlett. His academic clinical research included studies in community-acquired pneumonia and surgical infections, as well as HCV pathogenesis. At the time of his transition from academic medicine to industry, Dr. Oldach was a tenured Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and served as the Infectious Diseases Section Chief in the Baltimore Veterans Administration Hospital.
Carl T. Foster, Executive Vice President, Business Development
Carl T. Foster is the Executive Vice President, Business Development for Cempra Pharmaceuticals. Prior to joining Cempra, he was CEO of Jurilab, a European-based genomics company. Carl has also held Vice President-level positions with Nanogen, King Pharmaceuticals, Oxford GlycoSciences and Praecis Pharmaceuticals and as General Manager of Intracel BV, a Netherlands-based immunology company. Prior to that he was with Merck, Inc. and Astra Merck where he had increasing levels of responsibilities in sales, marketing, product development, and business development. Mr. Foster has served as an advisor to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies as a consultant and as a Managing Director with Ferghana Partners, Inc., an international investment banking group in New York. Carl has an MBA in Marketing and MS in Biochemistry from the University of Kansas where he conducted neurochemical research.
Gary Horwith, M.D., Executive Vice President, Regulatory Affairs
Dr. Horwith oversees regulatory chemistry, manufacturing and controls (CMC) and clinical strategies. He has 30 years of experience in clinical research and regulatory affairs and has brought numerous NCEs, vaccines, and other biological products to the IND stage, conducted Phase 1-to-3 trials and filed several NDAs during his 11 years at Wyeth and 19 years at other biotechnology and biopharmaceutical companies. Dr. Horwith received his M.D. from Autonomous University of Guadalajara, completed a residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Connecticut, an Infectious Disease Fellowship at University of California Irvine, and was a principal investigator at the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) before entering the pharmaceutical industry.
David Pereira, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Chemistry
Dr. David Pereira has over 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Prior to joining Cempra, he was a Director in the Synthesis Group of Cardinal Healthcare, where he was responsible for the process development of numerous drug candidates. He previously held positions at Baxter Healthcare in their IV Systems Division, Hemoglobin Therapeutics Group and the Corporate Research and Technical Division. He worked in parenteral drug development, medical product development and hemoglobin-based oxygen carrying solutions. Dr. Pereira earned his B.S. degree in Biochemistry from Virginia Tech followed by a Ph.D. in Medicinal Chemistry from Virginia Commonwealth University. He continued his training as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Illinois.