John A. Scarlett, M.D.
Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer
John A. Scarlett, M.D., has served as our Chairman of the Board since December 2018, our Chief Executive Officer and a director since joining Geron in September 2011, and President since January 2012. Dr. Scarlett also serves as a member of the boards of directors for Chiasma, Inc. since February 2015, and CytomX Therapeutics, Inc. since June 2016. Prior to joining Geron, Dr. Scarlett served as President, Chief Executive Officer and a member of the board of directors of Proteolix, Inc. from February 2009 until its acquisition by Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in November 2009. From February 2002 until its acquisition by Ipsen, S.A. in October 2008, Dr. Scarlett served as the Chief Executive Officer and a member of the board of directors of Tercica, Inc. and also as its President from February 2002 through February 2007. From March 1993 to May 2001, Dr. Scarlett served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Sensus Drug Development Corporation. In 1995, he co-founded Covance Biotechnology Services, Inc. and served as a member of its board of directors from inception to 2000. From 1991 to 1993, Dr. Scarlett headed the North American Clinical Development Center and served as Senior Vice President of Medical and Scientific Affairs at Novo Nordisk Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Novo Nordisk A/S. Dr. Scarlett received his B.A. degree in chemistry from Earlham College and his M.D. from the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine.
Olivia K. Bloom
Executive Vice President, Finance, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer
Olivia K. Bloom has served as our Executive Vice President, Finance since February 2014, Chief Financial Officer since December 2012 and Treasurer since February 2011. Ms. Bloom previously served as our Senior Vice President, Finance from December 2012 to February 2014, Chief Accounting Officer from September 2010 to December 2012 and Vice President, Finance from January 2007 to December 2012. Ms. Bloom joined the Company in 1994 as a Senior Financial Analyst and from 1996 to 2011 served as our Controller. Prior to Geron, Ms. Bloom started her career in public accounting at KPMG Peat Marwick and became a Certified Public Accountant in 1994. Ms. Bloom graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley.
Melissa A. Kelly Behrs
Executive Vice President, Business Operations and Chief Alliance Officer
Melissa A. Kelly Behrs has served as our Executive Vice President, Business Operations, and Chief Alliance Officer since December 2021. Previously, she was our Executive Vice President, Chief Business Officer from January 2019 to December 2021, Executive Vice President, Business Development and Portfolio and Alliance Management from February 2014 to January 2019, and our Senior Vice President, Portfolio and Alliance Management, from September 2012 to February 2014. Ms. Behrs joined Geron in November 1998 as Director of Corporate Development. Since then, she has served in various managerial positions, including General Manager, R&D Technologies; Vice President, Corporate Development; Senior Vice President, Therapeutic Development, Oncology; and Senior Vice President, Strategic Portfolio Management. From 1990 to 1998, Ms. Behrs worked at Genetics Institute, Inc. serving initially as Assistant Treasurer and then as Associate Director of Preclinical Operations where she was responsible for all business development, regulatory, and project management activities for the Preclinical Development function. Ms. Behrs received a B.S. from Boston College and an M.B.A. from Babson College.
Executive Vice President and Chief Business Officer
Edward Koval has served as our Executive Vice President and Chief Business Officer since December 2021. Previously, he was Chief Business Officer at 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 from 2013 to 2020, 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. From 2012 to 2015, Mr. Koval served as an independent corporate and business development consultant, advising multiple private and public biotech companies on partnering and fundraising. Mr. Koval’s prior pharmaceutical experience from 1992 to 2012 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. Mr. 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.
Andrew J. Grethlein, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer
Andrew J. Grethlein, Ph.D., has served as our Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer since January 2019. Previously, he served as our Executive Vice President, Development and Technical Operations from July 2014 to January 2019. He joined Geron in September 2012 as our Executive Vice President, Technical Operations. Prior to joining Geron, Dr. Grethlein was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals from January 2010 to September 2012. From October 2008 until January 2010, Dr. Grethlein was Senior Vice President of Biotechnology and Portfolio Management Team Leader for Hematology at Ipsen S.A. His responsibilities at Ipsen included planning and execution of worldwide strategy for product and portfolio development in the hematologic therapeutic area. From 2003 to 2008, Dr. Grethlein served as Senior Vice President of Pharmaceutical Operations at Tercica, Inc. where he was a member of the senior executive team that governed corporate strategy, business planning and company operations, and had responsibility for all manufacturing and quality functions. Before joining Tercica, Dr. Grethlein served in various positions at Elan Corporation from 1997 to 2003, including as Senior Director, South San Francisco Pharmaceutical Operations. From 1995 to 1997, Dr. Grethlein served as Manager, Biologics Development and Manufacturing, for Athena Neurosciences, Inc. Prior to this, he served in various engineering positions for the Michigan Biotechnology Institute. Dr. Grethlein received his A.A. degree in liberal arts from Simon's Rock Early College, his B.S. in biology from Bates College, and his M.S. and Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Michigan State University.
Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Chief Commercial Officer
Anil Kapur has served as our Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Chief Commercial Officer since December 2019. Prior to joining Geron, Mr. Kapur was Chief Commercial Officer at Actinium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from February 2018 to November 2019. From October 2016 until February 2018, Mr. Kapur was Vice President, Head of Early Assets, Biomarkers and External Innovation for Worldwide Oncology Commercialization at Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. Mr. Kapur served as Vice President, Global Head of Commercial and Portfolio Strategy at Baxalta, Incorporated, in a newly created Oncology Division, from November 2015 until after its acquisition by Shire plc in July 2016. Before joining Baxalta, Mr. Kapur held marketing and sales leadership roles of increasing responsibility during his 15-year tenure at the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson (Janssen). As Vice President, Commercial Leader, Hematology Franchise in Janssen’s Global Commercial Strategy Organization, he led the development and execution of commercial strategy and launch plans for in-market development, late development, and early pipeline assets, including imetelstat. Among Mr. Kapur’s most recognized achievements while at Janssen were the successful global launches of two transformational blockbuster hematology-oncology drugs, Imbruvica and Darzalex. Mr. Kapur holds a Bachelor of Engineering from Birla Institute of Technology in India; an M.S. in Industrial Engineering from Louisiana Tech University; and an M.B.A from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.
Aleksandra Rizo, M.D., Ph.D.
Executive Vice President, Chief Medical Officer
Aleksandra Rizo, M.D., Ph.D., has served as our Executive Vice President, Chief Medical Officer since January 2019. Prior to joining Geron, Dr. Rizo was Executive Director, Strategy and Clinical Lead, at Celgene Corporation from March 2018 to January 2019, where she led submission activities and participated in strategic business development activities. From October 2008 to March 2018, Dr. Rizo served in a number of oncology drug development functions at Janssen Research and Development, LLC (Janssen), including Senior Director, Compound Development Team Leader for all Phase 1 myeloid assets and Global Clinical Leader for all late-stage myeloid assets, including imetelstat from November 2014 to March 2018, as well as Global Clinical Leader for the ibrutinib mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) program. In these roles, she had oversight and leadership responsibilities for overall clinical development strategy, study designs, execution and data interpretation. In addition, Dr. Rizo was a core member of Janssen’s Hematology Strategy Team where she participated and led diligence projects in hematology. During her initial tenure with Janssen, Dr. Rizo also worked on a variety of Velcade clinical trials in lymphoma and multiple myeloma. Dr. Rizo holds an M.D. from the University Ss Cyril and Methodius, Skopje, Macedonia, where she also completed a residency in internal medicine/hematology. She also has a Ph.D. in human leukemic stem cell biology from the University of Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands, and a Ph.D. in mouse stem cell biology from the University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.
Stephen N. Rosenfield, J.D.
Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary
Stephen N. Rosenfield, J.D., has served as our Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary since January 2019. Previously, he served as our Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary from February 2012 to January 2019, General Counsel and Secretary since January 2012 and Secretary since October 2011. Mr. Rosenfield received a B.S. from Hofstra University and a J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law.