About UsOur
Leadership

ONE TEAM striving to pioneer a new frontier in medicine

Our leadership team moves in one direction: forward. Our focus unites the world-class experts we have brought together across cell and gene therapy, rare disease, clinical development and manufacturing. We share a passion for science, a commitment to teamwork and, above all, dedication to families and individuals living with genetic diseases.

We are AVROBIO.

EXECUTIVE BIOS

Meet our
Leaders

Geoff MacKay

Geoff MacKay

President & CEO

Geoff is a pioneer in cell and gene therapy with a track record of successful leadership at innovative biotechs. He is the former CEO of Organogenesis Inc., the world’s leading cell therapy company. During his tenure at the helm, the company treated 1 million patients with living cell therapies, received the first approval of an allogeneic cell therapy from the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research and led the field of regenerative medicine. Geoff is also the founding CEO of eGenesis, a biotech dedicated to applying CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing to xenotransplantation. Earlier in his career, Geoff spent 11 years at Novartis in senior leadership positions within the global transplantation and immunology franchise. Geoff sits on the boards of Talaris Therapeutics and Satellos Bioscience. Past activities include chairman of the board of MassBio, chairman of the board of the Alliance of Regenerative Medicine, and a member of the advisory council to the Health Policy Commission for Massachusetts.

Matthew Arnold

Matthew Arnold

Head of Operations

Matt brings substantial experience in global, cross-functional roles such as business operations, supply chain management, product development and strategic planning.

As Head of Operations, Matt leads the Portfolio & Program Management, Quality Assurance, and Supply Chain functions. Additionally, Matt leads key strategic initiatives such as how AVROBIO evolves their ex-vivo clinical delivery model to enable global registrational studies across multiple programs.

He was most recently with AstraZeneca where he served as operations therapy area leader for oncology and the head of operations for the company’s IMED biotech unit. He joined AstraZeneca from their subsidiary MedImmune where he served as VP, chief of staff to the president. He also spent 11 years with Amgen, serving in a number of key roles including global program manager for XGEVA® (denosumab), director of supply chain risk management and an expat assignment as the head of strategic planning and operations for international R&D. Matt began his career in the U.S. Navy, serving as engineering officer on a destroyer, commanding officer of a special operations ship and faculty at the U.S. Naval Academy, where he also coached the varsity offshore sailing team.

Matt has a BS from the U.S. Naval Academy, an MS in biotechnology from Georgetown University and an MBA from the University of Michigan. He currently serves as adjunct faculty in Georgetown University’s biotechnology MS program where he teaches courses in management strategy and project & portfolio management.

Steven Avruch, JD

Steven Avruch, JD

Chief Legal Officer

Steven was chief corporation counsel and assistant secretary (VP) at Biogen Inc., and prior to that worked at Biogen as an associate general counsel. A corporate attorney, Steven has more than 30 years of experience in a broad range of industries including life sciences and technology companies. He graduated with an AB in Russian Studies from Dartmouth College, and later earned his JD from Boston College Law School.

Diana M. Escolar, MD, FAAN

Diana M. Escolar, MD, FAAN

Chief Medical Officer

Diana is an experienced global medical leader who has been heavily involved in guiding the development of new therapies for rare diseases with a special focus on lysosomal and pediatric and adult neurogenetic disorders as both a board-certified neurologist and a biotech executive for more than 20 years. She previously served as chief medical officer at miRagen Therapeutics, a clinical-stage company developing microRNA therapeutics with leading indications in rare diseases, including rare T-cell lymphomas. Prior to working at miRagen, Diana was the chief medical officer of Akashi Therapeutics, Inc., the principal medical consultant for Acceleron Pharma’s muscular dystrophy program and a senior medical consultant and advisory board member for muscular dystrophy programs at Shire Plc. Diana was the principal medical consultant for Genzyme’s pivotal trial for Myozyme, an enzyme replacement therapy approved to treat adult-onset Pompe disease. In addition to her industry leadership, Dr. Escolar has served as associate professor of neurology at both Johns Hopkins University and George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, and was on the faculty at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. She has served as the co-founder and director of the Cooperative International Neuromuscular Research Group (CINRG) and as a steering committee member of the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Pilot Program funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She served as director of the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) clinic at George Washington University. As a faculty member at the Children’s National Hospital and Children’s Research Institute in Washington, D.C., she initiated and developed an international pediatric neuromuscular program, serving as director of the muscular dystrophy association (MDA) clinic and leading an international network conducting translational and clinical research in pediatric neurogenetic disorders. Diana earned her MD from the University of Buenos Aires and completed her neurology residency at Boston University Medical center and her fellowship in adult and pediatric neuromuscular diseases and electrophysiology at the Lahey Clinic and Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

Chris Mason, MD, PhD, FRCS, FMedSci

Chris Mason, MD, PhD, FRCS, FMedSci

Chief Scientific Officer

Chris is a clinician-scientist with more than 25 years of cell and gene therapy experience spanning R&D, clinical medicine, bioprocessing and commercialization. He works to train the next generation of world-class scientists as a professor of cell and gene therapy at University College London and reviews cutting-edge research from around the world as senior editor of the journals Cell and Gene Therapy Insights and Regenerative Medicine. Chris was instrumental in the founding of the Alliance for Regenerative Medicine (ARM), the UK-Israel Science Council and the London Regenerative Medicine Network. He serves on the board of directors for Krystal Biotech and OriBiotech, and is a member of the scientific advisory board for several public and private companies, the UK Cell & Gene Therapy Catapult, and the Canadian Centre for the Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine.

Holly May, MBA

Holly May, MBA

Chief Commercial Officer

Holly is a rare diseases leader with deep experience in commercial strategy and operations. She was previously vice president and head of commercial at SOBI, Inc., where she led all aspects of commercial strategy, operations and performance. Prior to joining SOBI, Holly held leadership roles of increasing strategic importance across marketing, operations, sales, and strategic planning at Sanofi and Genzyme. As vice president in the Genzyme rare disease unit, she led the team responsible for brand, disease and digital marketing for Fabry and other lysosomal disorders. She holds a BA in zoology from Miami University of Ohio, and an MBA with a concentration in marketing from the University of Akron.

Erik Ostrowski, MBA

Erik Ostrowski, MBA

Chief Financial Officer

Erik brings over 20 years of finance and biotech operating experience, including a focus on rare diseases and cell-based therapies. He was previously CFO at Summit Therapeutics, where he led the finance and investor relations functions and played a key role in multiple strategic transactions to build out the company’s U.S. and global operations. Prior to joining Summit, Erik was vice president of finance at Organogenesis Inc. He previously worked in investment banking, including as a director of healthcare investment banking with Leerink Partners. Erik began his career as an accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers and received a BS in accounting and economics from Babson College and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Deanna Petersen, MBA

Deanna Petersen, MBA

Chief Business Officer

Deanna is a seasoned biotech executive with unparalleled experience in global business and corporate development and strategic planning. She previously led business development for Shire’s rare disease unit, where she and her team identified and evaluated new business opportunities and negotiated and executed more than 40 licenses, mergers, acquisitions and other transactions in five years, including a $4.2 billion acquisition of ViroPharma. Prior to joining Shire, Deanna was vice president of business development at Agenus Inc. and at Coley Pharmaceutical Group. Deanna sits on the board of directors for Tecogen, Inc. (TGEN) and has previously served on boards at Armagen, American DG Energy (ADGE), the Massachusetts Biotechnology Association, the Boston chapter of the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association and the Boston BioPharma Executive Council.

Kim Raineri, MBA

Kim Raineri, MBA

Chief Manufacturing and Technology Officer

Kim has deep global experience in the cell and gene therapy industry, biologics and medical device spaces, with a distinguished track record of innovation and implementation of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). Prior to joining AVROBIO, he served as the vice president of operations for Nikon CeLL innovation Co., Ltd, a Japanese contract development and manufacturing organization. During his tenure, he established the company as the preferred provider of custom process development and manufacturing services for cell and gene therapy products in the Japanese market. Previously, Kim held management positions at Lonza, serving as the business director for cell therapy contract manufacturing operations in Singapore for five years, and prior to that as director of operations at Lonza’s Maryland facilities. Kim was also previously the senior manager of the Tissue Processing Lab at CryoLife Inc. He holds a BS from the University of Miami and an MBA from Kennesaw State University.

Georgette Verdin

Georgette Verdin

Chief Human Resources Officer

Georgette is an accomplished leader with deep experience developing HR strategies aligned to drive business results. She previously led global human resources at Novartis Institutes of Biomedical Research, where she partnered with executives and their scientific research teams across seven sites in the U.S., Asia and Europe. Before that, she served as vice president of global corporate human resources at Biogen Inc. She lived and worked in Europe for more than 10 years nurturing startups and has proven expertise at helping build cultures that attract, retain and develop world-class talent. Georgette has a passion for supporting women in business and paying forward the benefits of mentorship. She founded the Professional Women’s Association in Budapest, Hungary in 1998. She also founded Girls Night Out in Seattle in 2005 and then extended the organization to Boston. Girls Night Out is dedicated to connecting and supporting women in their careers and through their transitions. Georgette received a BA from Georgetown University and an MA in international relations from the American University School of International Service.

Monique da Silva

Monique da Silva

SVP, Corporate Communications

Monique is a global communications leader with extensive experience in the biotechnology and healthcare industries. She was previously vice president, corporate communications at Spark Therapeutics, where she was responsible for internal and external communications, and led the company’s corporate social responsibility efforts. While at Spark, she led the communications efforts for the regulatory approval and launch of the first gene therapy for a genetic disease in the U.S. Previously, Monique led the U.S. public affairs group for Biogen, where she was responsible for advocacy relations, employee communications and external communications to support the company’s $6.5 billion U.S. business, launching four new medicines in two years. Before Biogen, she worked in U.S. and global leadership positions at Ogilvy PR and MSLGroup. Monique is part of the leadership team for the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association, New England. She has a BA from Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine and completed the General Management Program at Harvard Business School.

Azadeh Golipour, PhD

Azadeh Golipour, PhD

SVP, CMC and Manufacturing

Azadeh Golipour is a senior leader with global experience and proven track record in cell and gene therapy process development, analytical development and GMP manufacturing. She is a CMC subject matter expert with ability to provide and execute CMC strategies from early-stage through late-stage product development. Azadeh is experienced in progressing novel therapies to regulatory filings and leading CMC interactions with global regulatory authorities.

Azadeh joined AVROBIO five years ago; during this period, Azadeh designed and implemented AVROBIO’s platform plato®. Azadeh has also built and led multiple teams during her time at AVROBIO.

Prior to AVROBIO, Azadeh spent time at CCRM, a catalyst for commercializing regenerative medicine-based technologies and cell and gene therapies. CCRM enables product development through its unique translational platforms and process development and manufacturing capabilities. During her time at CCRM, Azadeh led the due diligence, business planning and program leadership for two successful company concepts developing iPSC-derived cell therapies as part of CCRM’s company incubation program. Both of these companies attracted funding from venture capitalists and were spun out of CCRM.

Azadeh holds a PhD in molecular genetics from University of Toronto (Canada) and has published multiple articles, including two first-author articles in the prestigious journal Cell Stem Cell and one article in the prestigious journal Nature. Azadeh’s landmark articles on reprogramming stem cells have been cited more than 1,000 times.

Jose F. Gomez

Jose F. Gomez

SVP, Global Market Access & Value

Jose is a seasoned biotech commercial leader with deep expertise in value and access, strategic pricing, reimbursement, new product development and global commercialization. He successfully built and led market access, pricing and reimbursement functions at three leading biopharma companies, with in-depth experience in gene therapy and rare diseases. Jose previously led the global market access and global strategic marketing functions at AveXis. Prior to AveXis, he worked at Shire Pharmaceuticals, Abbott Laboratories and Eli Lilly. While at Shire, Jose led global market access for the rare diseases business, including the lysosomal disorders commercial and pipeline products.

Andreas Kouri

Andreas Kouri

SVP, Global Supply Chain & External Manufacturing

Andreas has deep knowledge of the building blocks, strengths and efficiencies of a holistic value chain. Throughout his 20 years in the industry, Andreas has driven unparalleled patient experience through advocating on behalf of patients and their families. Prior to joining AVROBIO, Andreas served as Vice President, Global Supply Chain at bluebird bio, where he was accountable for design, build, scale, oversight and leadership of their end to end clinical and commercial supply chain. Previously, Andreas held positions of increasing responsibility at Shire, BMS, Pfizer and Pharmacia, spanning all aspects of global supply chain across multiple geographies, including Sweden, Ireland and the United States.

Board of
Directors

Bruce Booth, DPhil Bruce Booth, DPhil

Bruce Booth, DPhil

Chairman

Bruce Booth is a partner at Atlas Venture and focuses on the discovery and development of novel medicines and therapeutic platforms.

Bruce is currently chairman of Arkuda Therapeutics, Hotspot Therapeutics, Kymera Therapeutics (Nasdaq:KYMR), Nimbus Therapeutics, and Quench Bio. He also serves on the board of Magenta Therapeutics (Nasdaq:MGTA) and several seed stage companies. He previously served on the boards of past Atlas companies Avila (acquired by Celgene), Lysosomal Therapeutics, miRagen (Nasdaq:MGEN), Padlock (acquired by BMS), Prestwick (acquired by Biovail), Rodin Therapeutics (acquired by Alkermes), Stromedix (acquired by Biogen), Unum Therapeutics (Nasdaq:UMRX), and a number of other ventures.

Bruce serves or has served as an advisor in various capacities to Takeda, UCB, and the Gates Foundation. He also serves on the boards of the Pennsylvania State Research Foundation, which helps with technology transfer for Penn State, and New England Disabled Sports, a charity dedicated to adaptive sports. Bruce blogs about biotech and venture capital topics at LifeSciVC.com, which is syndicated on Forbes.

Prior to joining Atlas in 2005, Bruce was a consultant at McKinsey & Company, as well as an investor for Caxton Health Holdings. As a British Marshall Scholar, Bruce received a DPhil (PhD) in molecular immunology from Oxford University. He received a BS in biochemistry, summa cum laude, from The Pennsylvania State University.

Bruce enjoys running, skiing, hiking, and fly fishing. He lives in Wellesley, MA and has three wonderful kids.

Ian Clark Ian Clark

Ian Clark

Ian has more than 35 years of experience in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry, most recently serving as CEO and a member of the board of directors for Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, until his retirement in 2016. During his seven-year tenure as CEO, Ian and his team brought 11 new medicines to market for patients fighting rheumatoid arthritis, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and various types of cancer. Ian was among the highest rated CEOs by Glassdoor, recognized as the Bay Area’s most admired CEO by the San Francisco Business Times and awarded the Honorable Mentor of the Year by the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association. Prior to joining Genentech, Ian held various positions of increasing responsibility at Novartis, Sanofi, Ivax and Searle, working in the USA, UK, Canada, Eastern Europe and France.

Currently, Ian is on the board of directors of Takeda, Agios Pharmaceuticals, Guardant Health and Corvus Pharmaceuticals, and serves as chairman of the board of Olema Oncology. He is an operating partner of Blackstone Life Sciences and a member of the BioFulcrum Board of the Gladstone Institutes. Ian previously served on the boards of Shire, Kite Pharma, Dendreon, Solazyme, Forty Seven and Vernalis. He was also on the board of Biotechnology Industry Association and on the Economic Advisory Council of the 12th District of the Federal Reserve.

Ian received his BS in biological sciences and an honorary DSc from Southampton University in the United Kingdom.

Phillip Donenberg Phillip Donenberg

Phillip Donenberg

Phillip brings more than 20 years of leadership expertise in finance, mergers and acquisitions and operations focused in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. He has held leadership roles overseeing strategic transactions, financing management and accounting operations, controls and reporting processes for growing life sciences companies. Phillip has served as a member of AVROBIO’s board of directors and audit committee chairman since June 2018. He also serves on the board of directors and as the chairman of the audit committee of Taysha Gene Therapies, a gene therapy company.

Phillip is currently Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Jaguar Gene Therapy, LLC., an early-stage gene therapy company, and has served in such roles since February 2020. Previously, Phillip served as Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Assertio Therapeutics, Inc., a pharmaceutical company, from July 2018 to November 2018. Prior to that, he served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of AveXis, Inc., a gene therapy company, from October 2017 to June 2018 and as Vice President, Corporate Controller from September 2016 to October 2017. Prior to joining AveXis, Phillip served as Chief Financial Officer of RestorGenex Corporation from 2014 until its merger with Diffusion Pharmaceuticals LLC, a pharmaceutical company, in January 2016, and served as the merged company’s consultant Chief Financial Officer until September 2016. Phillip earned a BS in accountancy from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana College of Business and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Gail Farfel, PhD

Gail Farfel, PhD

Gail brings more than 25 years of pharmaceutical development and regulatory rare disease experience in rare diseases with both large and small pharmaceutical companies. She has been executive vice president and global chief development officer at Zogenix, Inc., a rare disease company, since July 2015. At Zogenix, she leads all product development activities, including preclinical and clinical development, and regulatory strategy. Prior to joining Zogenix, Gail was chief clinical and regulatory officer of Marinus Pharmaceuticals, establishing and overseeing clinical, medical and regulatory strategies for adult and pediatric seizure disorders, including a pediatric epileptic orphan disease. Previously, she was vice president, therapeutic area head for neuroscience clinical development and medical affairs at Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, where she oversaw a portfolio of products for multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.

Gail began her career in pharmaceutical drug development at Pfizer Inc., where she worked in clinical development and global medical affairs, directing programs through all stages of clinical development and regulatory submissions.

She has authored more than 50 scientific articles in the areas of neuropsychopharmacology and drug effects. Gail currently serves on the board of directors of DURECT Corporation (Nasdaq: DRRX) and is a director on the Board of the American Society for Experimental Neurotherapeutics. She holds a PhD in neuropsychopharmacology from the University of Chicago, where she received the Ginsburg Prize for Dissertation Excellence and is a director on the Medical and Biological Sciences Alumni Board. Gail also holds a BA in biochemistry from the University of Virginia.

Annalisa Jenkins, MBBS, FRCP Annalisa Jenkins, MBBS, FRCP

Annalisa Jenkins, MBBS, FRCP

Annalisa is a life science thought leader with over 20 years of biopharmaceutical industry experience. She has recent experience in the fields of gene therapy and rare disease, having served as president and CEO of Dimension Therapeutics Inc until its acquisition in November 2017. Her prior leadership roles at global pharmaceutical companies included serving as executive vice president, global development and medical for Merck Serono. She also held several senior positions at Bristol-Myers Squibb including as senior vice president and head of global medical affairs. Earlier in her career, Annalisa was a medical officer in the British Royal Navy during the Gulf Conflict, achieving the rank of surgeon lieutenant commander. Currently, she chairs the boards of CellMedica, Cocoon Biotech and Vium, Inc., and is a director on the boards of Ardelyx, Oncimmune Holdings plc, AgeX, Affimed, PlaqueTec Ltd. and a number of early–stage private biotech and life science companies. She also serves as a committee member of the science board to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Annalisa graduated with a degree in medicine from St. Bartholomew’s Hospital in the University of London and subsequently trained in cardiovascular medicine in the U.K. National Health Service.

Geoff MacKay Geoff MacKay

Geoff MacKay

President & CEO

Geoff is the president and CEO of AVROBIO and a veteran biotech executive with deep experience in cell and gene therapy. He is the former CEO of Organogenesis Inc., the world’s leading cell therapy company. During his tenure at the helm, the company treated 1 million patients with living cell therapies, received the first approval of an allogeneic cell therapy from the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research and led the field of regenerative medicine. Geoff is also the founding CEO of eGenesis, a biotech dedicated to applying CRISPR Cas-9 gene editing to xenotransplantation. Earlier in his career, Geoff spent 11 years at Novartis in senior leadership positions within the global transplantation and immunology franchise. Geoff sits on the boards of Talaris Therapeutics and Satellos Bioscience. Past activities include chairman of the board of MassBio, chairman of the board of the Alliance of Regenerative Medicine, and a member of the advisory council to the Health Policy Commission for Massachusetts.

Christopher Paige, PhD, FCAHS Christopher Paige, PhD, FCAHS

Christopher Paige, PhD, FCAHS

Christopher earned a PhD in immunology at the Sloan-Kettering Division of Cornell University Graduate School of Medical Sciences in 1979. He became a member of the Basel Institute for Immunology in Switzerland in 1980 where he worked until joining the Ontario Cancer Institute (OCI) as a senior scientist in 1987. In 1990, Christopher became the founding director of the Arthritis and Autoimmunity Research Centre as well as director of research at The Wellesley Hospital. In 1997, he returned to OCI, now part of the University Health Network (UHN), to assume the role of vice president, research at UHN. Christopher now serves as senior scientist at UHN and is a professor in the Departments of Medical Biophysics and Immunology at the University of Toronto.

Philip Vickers, PhD

Philip Vickers, PhD

Philip is CEO of Faze Medicines, a biotechnology company focused on biomolecular condensates, and has served in that role since January 2021. Previously, he was president and CEO of Northern Biologics, Inc., a company focused on the development of monoclonal antibodies as immuno-oncology therapeutics to treat targeted populations of cancer patients. Prior to joining Northern Biologics, from 2010 to 2017, he was global head of research and development at Shire, responsible for overseeing preclinical research and development, clinical research, regulatory affairs and medical affairs. Phil oversaw Shire’s growing product portfolio and as executive vice president and a member of Shire’s Executive Committee he played a key role in developing and executing Shire’s global business strategy, with a particular focus on rare diseases. Prior to joining Shire, he had roles of increasing responsibility in drug discovery in a range of therapeutic areas at Merck, Pfizer, Boehringer-Ingelheim and Resolvyx.

Philip is currently a member of the board of directors of Revance Therapeutics. He holds a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Toronto and a BS in applied biochemistry from the University of Salford, Manchester UK. He was also a visiting fellow at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland.

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