Alumni Connections

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David MelineModerna, Inc., a clinical stage biotechnology company headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, announced that David Meline, ’86, has joined the company as CFO. Meline joins Moderna from Amgen, a biotechnology company based in Thousand Oaks, California, where he served as CFO and executive vice president.

Dmirty Valbe11.2 Ventures has added Dmitry Valbe, ’10, to its management team as chief technology officer. Valbe joins the company from Nuveen, an asset manager headquartered in New York, where he served as managing director and head of data science. 11.2 is a venture builder studio based in Chicago.

Jai DasJai Das, ’99, will join the board of directors for UJET Inc., a provider of cloud contact center solutions based in San Francisco. Das is managing director, president, and cofounder of Sapphire Ventures, a venture capital firm based in Palo Alto, California, which also recently led Series C round funding for UJET.

No ImageADMA Biologics, Inc., a late-stage biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Ramsey, New Jersey, has elected Martha Demski, ’77, to its board of directors. Desmki was senior vice president and CFO of Ajinomoto Althea, Inc. (now known as Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services), a contract development and manufacturing organization based in San Diego, before her retirement in 2017.

Dan FairfaxStorCentric, a global provider of storage solutions based in Sunnyvale, California, has added Dan Fairfax, ’79, to its board of advisors. Fairfax brings more than 25 years of technology experience as the former senior vice president and CFO of Brocade Communications Systems, now a Broadcom group company based in San Jose, California.

Jennifer HolmgrenJennifer Holmgren, ’06 (XP-75), has been elected to the executive committee board as the I&E section vice chair for the Biotechnology Innovation Organization in Washington, DC. Holmgren is CEO of LanzaTech, a provider of carbon recycling technology based in Skokie, Illinois.

Johannes HuthJohannes Huth, ’86, has joined the board of Coty, a global beauty company headquartered in Amsterdam. Huth is a partner and head of EMEA operations for KKR, a global investment firm headquartered in New York.

Dan MoloneyDan Moloney, ’83, will join the board of directors for Xperi Holding Corporation, a creator of innovative technology solutions based in San Jose, California, following its merger with TiVo. Prior to the merger, Moloney served on TiVo’s board of directors since 2013. He is an executive partner at Siris Capital, LLC, a New York–based private equity firm in the technology and telecommunications industries.

Paula PriceThe Boston based health plan Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts announced that Paula Price, ’88, has been reelected the company’s board of directors. She will serve on the audit committee and the finance and business performance committee. Most recently, Price was executive vice president and CFO of the New York–headquartered retailer Macy’s Inc., where she remains an advisor.

Krishnan RajagopalanKrishnan Rajagopalan, ’88, has been reelected to the board of the US-China Business Council (USCBC), a Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization of American companies that do business with China. Rajagopalan is the president and CEO of the Chicago-based management consulting company Heidrick and Struggles.

Andrew AckermanTechCrunch interviewed Andrew Ackerman, ’95, for an article about how the pandemic and the shift to remote work will impact the startup sector in New York. Ackerman is managing director of urbantech for Dreamit Ventures, a New York–based early stage venture fund.

Dan BloodBTIG, a global financial services firm headquartered in New York, announced that Daniel Blood, ’90, has joined the firm’s investment banking unit as head of specialty finance. Prior to BTIG, Blood was the group head of real estate and head of the New York office at FBR, a full-service investment bank headquartered in Arlington, Virginia.  

Bob BoltBob Bolt, ’86, has joined Symphony Financial, a Skokie, Illinois-based wealth management firm within Northwestern Mutual, as a partner. He previously served as a wealth management advisor for the company.  

Tim CurranBuilding Engines, a Boston-based provider of building operations software for modern commercial real estate (CRE), is making available, at no cost, three simplified software modules that are pre-configured to support building reopening efforts during COVID-19. “Building operations need to evolve rapidly to support tenants and their employees as we all move through the various phases of reopening,” said Tim Curran, ’97, CEO of Building Engines. “It’s more important than ever for CRE operators to have processes and systems in place to instill confidence in their tenants that they are equipped to open and operate a safe and healthy building.”

mike DoyleCOTA, Inc., a Boston-based health-care technology company focused on cancer care, is redirecting a significant amount of its resources to analyze real-world data collected from COVID-19 patients. Through the COVID-19 Evidence Accelerator program, which brings together leading experts in health data aggregation and analytics, these findings can be shared with frontline care providers and answer key questions about treatment as quickly as possible. “Through our work with the Evidence Accelerator, we've been able to work closely with the FDA and industry leaders to enhance our national and global understanding of this pandemic,” said Michael Doyle, ’82, COTA’s president and CEO. “While randomized clinical trials will ultimately help validate these initial findings, the real-world observational studies in progress now offer the first useful early insights into effective treatment strategies for COVID-19.”

Stanley CerckNovavax, a late-stage biotechnology company focused on vaccines for serious infectious diseases based in Gaithersburg, Maryland, announced it will receive approximately $200 million from a private placement to aid its search for a COVID-19 vaccine. “We are extremely pleased to receive this tremendous support from RA Capital, which we believe signals a high level of confidence in the significant progress of our COVID-19 and influenza vaccine programs,” said Stanley C. Erck, ’76, president and CEO of Novavax. He added that the proceeds will help the company fulfill its “critical priority of providing a vaccine against the COVID-19 pandemic as quickly as possible.”

No ImageUrsula Moncau, ’04, has been promoted to president of Schaumburg Bank & Trust, a member of the Wintrust Community Bank family based in Schaumburg, Illinois. She will continue to serve as head of the Wintrust commercial real estate group in the northwest hub.

No ImageTechCrunch interviewed Dylan Taylor, ’98, and other top investors in the space market for an article about the state of the industry and what impact the pandemic might have on it. Taylor is chairman and CEO of Voyager Space Holdings, a Denver-based space holding company.

lawson whitingThe Jack Daniel Distillery and the Nearest Green Distillery are partnering on the Nearest & Jack Advancement Initiative to further diversity within the American whiskey industry. “Given our deep commitment to diversity and inclusion, I am thrilled we are coming together in this way today … to help us advance the next generation of African American leaders in our industry,” said Lawson Whiting, ’97, president and CEO of Jack Daniel’s parent company, Brown-Forman Corporation, a producer and marketer of wine and spirits based in Louisville Kentucky. The initiative will establish the Nearest Green School of Distilling, the Leadership Acceleration Program, and the Business Incubation Program.

David RabieCrain’s Chicago Business published an article about David Rabie, ’15, and the success of his food-tech startup Tovala. The Chicago-based company, which sells countertop smart ovens and prepackaged meals, has seen a 300 percent increase in sales in September and a 20 percent increase in subscribers since March, when stay-at-home orders took effect. “The business was doing really well before coronavirus, but it accelerated things,” says Rabie, who serves as CEO.

Charlie RossettiLondon-based private equity group Sovereign Capital has hired Charles Rossetti, ’15, as an investment director focusing primarily on the business services sector. Previously, Rossetti was a principal at the mid-market firm Morgenthaler Private Equity headquartered in Cleveland.

No ImageBizwomen, the Business Journals’ news site focused on women business leaders, featured Shruti Gandhi, ’12, founder and managing partner of the San Francisco–based venture firm Array Ventures, in an article about her work funding women and immigrant founders and her recent initiative investing in startups founded by people of color, especially those who identify as Black and Latinx. Additionally, Gandhi is offering underrepresented minority entrepreneurs monthly roundtable sessions to get feedback and advise on their business ideas from herself and other venture capitalists.