Peter K. Miller
Chief Executive Officer, Board of Directors
Peter Miller joined the Board of Directors of OptiNose AS in 2008 when he first became familiar with the Company’s unique approach to nasal drug delivery and convinced of the potential for using it to create clinically important new products. In 2010, in partnership with Ramy Mahmoud, Mr. Miller led the start-up of Optinose in collaboration with Avista Capital Partners, acquiring OptiNose AS and accepting the role of CEO. He also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Optinose.
Mr. Miller was previously the Co-Founder, CEO and President of Take Care Health Systems, a company that disrupted the US healthcare system through a revolutionary idea to operate medical clinics inside Walgreens retail pharmacies. Mr. Miller served as a Vice President in the Walgreens Health and Wellness Division and remained CEO for Take Care Health Systems for three years after its sale to Walgreens while growing the clinical operation to more than 400 clinics nationwide.
Earlier, Mr. Miller spent more than 15 years at Johnson & Johnson, serving in a variety of marketing and general management roles that included Worldwide President of Johnson & Johnson – Merck Consumer Pharmaceuticals and President of Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a $4 billion pharmaceutical company. While at Johnson & Johnson, he played an integral role in building brands such as Tylenol, Motrin, Imodium, Pepcid, Duragesic, Risperdal and Aciphex.
Mr. Miller earned an economics degree from Trinity College and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
Ramy A. Mahmoud, MD, MPH
President and Chief Operating Officer
Dr. Mahmoud joined his partner, Peter Miller, in the start-up of Optinose and its US subsidiary in 2010, taking the role of President and Chief Operating Officer and sharing responsibility for leading all aspects of the Company. This includes overall corporate strategy; finance; scientific activities inclusive of product R&D, manufacturing and supply chain; commercial development; and business development.
Prior to Optinose, Dr. Mahmoud spent 14 years at Johnson & Johnson where he was Chief Medical Officer and a member of the Global Management Board of the Ethicon group of companies. During his Johnson & Johnson tenure, he also held senior roles in the Pharmaceutical sector, and in addition to management board responsibilities at several operating companies, he led a range of functions in both R&D and commercial organizations. Dr. Mahmoud participated in the development, launch and/or commercialization of dozens of pharmaceutical and medical device products spanning multiple therapeutic categories.
Earlier in his career, Dr. Mahmoud served 10 years on active duty and an additional 10 reserve years in the United States Army, earning the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and acting at times as a battalion surgeon or flight surgeon. He received numerous commendations and decorations for his service. During this time, he held various patient care, research and academic positions, culminating as head of the Department of Epidemiology at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and as inaugural leader of a policy research and analysis activity in support of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Health Affairs).
Over the span of his time in public service and in business leadership, Dr. Mahmoud has become an accomplished international scientist, making hundreds of scientific presentations, publishing many peer-reviewed papers and textbook chapters and serving as a scientific reviewer for a number of journals and textbooks.
Dr. Mahmoud earned a Master’s degree with a focus in healthcare management and policy from Harvard, an MD from the first Honors Program in Medical Education at the University of Miami and board certifications in both Public Health/Preventive Medicine and in Internal Medicine. He holds certificates from the Program in Clinical Effectiveness (Harvard Medical School) and in Advanced Tropical Medicine (Walter Reed). Dr. Mahmoud has been and remains involved with a number of professional societies.
Chief Commercial Officer
Tom Gibbs joined Optinose in September 2016 as Chief Commercial Officer. In this role, Mr. Gibbs is responsible for all activities associated with the commercial function of the Company and has executive oversight of business development.
Mr. Gibbs brings more than 20 years of diverse commercial leadership experience to Optinose, including roles in general management, marketing, sales, commercial operations, customer insights, analytics and finance. He joined Optinose from Takeda Pharmaceuticals where he led the General Medicines Business Unit for the United States. In this role, Mr. Gibbs had responsibility for a multi-billion-dollar portfolio comprising 11 brands spanning several therapeutic classes including CNS, GI, inflammation, diabetes and metabolics, and he led a team of more than 2,000 people.
Before joining Takeda, Mr. Gibbs was at Vanda Pharmaceuticals where he was the Chief Commercial Officer for the US and EU commercial organizations, including the rare disease franchise and CNS portfolio. Prior to joining Vanda, Mr. Gibbs spent more than five years at Bristol-Myers Squibb where he held a variety of commercial leadership roles of increasing responsibility. Most recently, he served as the Vice President of Worldwide Commercial Operations where he helped drive the transformation of the company’s commercial model and commercial organization across all therapeutic categories and geographies.
Prior to working at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Mr. Gibbs was the Vice President of US Sales for Novartis Vaccines & Diagnostics where he led the launch of two new vaccines, designed and deployed a pediatric sales force, developed and implemented a supply chain solution to support a direct distribution business model, and created a sales operations infrastructure to support an expanded sales force. Earlier in his career, Mr. Gibbs held multiple US and global marketing roles at SmithKline Beecham (now GSK), Johnson & Johnson and Endo Pharmaceuticals.
Mr. Gibbs holds a Bachelor of Science in economics with a dual concentration in finance and marketing and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Chief Financial Officer
Keith Goldan joined Optinose in January 2017 as Chief Financial Officer. He brings to the Company more than 25 years of executive financial and operational leadership in biopharmaceutical and medical technology companies including CFO roles at private and public life sciences companies from early through commercial stage. Mr. Goldan most recently served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Fibrocell, a publicly held cell and gene therapy company, and of NuPathe, where he helped direct the sale of the specialty healthcare company to Teva in 2014. In these roles, Mr. Goldan led finance, IT, HR and corporate development teams and successfully raised capital though an IPO as well as multiple follow-on equity, rights, private placement and debt offerings.
Mr. Goldan’s experience also includes CFO roles at PuriCore (now Realm Therapeutics) and Biosyn as well as roles with ViroPharma and KPMG.
Mr. Goldan holds a Bachelor of Science (cum laude) in finance from the Robert H. Smith School of business at the University of Maryland and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Chief Legal Officer
Michael Marino joined Optinose in January 2017 as Chief Legal Officer. In this role, Mr. Marino serves as Corporate Secretary to the Board of Directors and has overall responsibility for leading the legal function including legal and intellectual property strategy, risk management, compliance, contracting and advising the Company on strategic transactions, financings and corporate governance matters.
Mr. Marino is a seasoned executive and legal advisor with more than 15 years of experience advising public and privately held companies in a diverse range of industries – most notably life sciences. Prior to joining Optinose, Mr. Marino served as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Fibrocell, a publicly held cell and gene therapy company. Prior to Fibrocell, Mr. Marino served as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of NuPathe, a publicly held specialty healthcare company, from 2010 until its acquisition by Teva Pharmaceuticals in 2014. During his tenures at Fibrocell and NuPathe, Mr. Marino secured the issuance of numerous US and foreign patents, successfully managed litigation matters, implemented and enhanced compliance programs and led the legal negotiations for public and private financing transactions, licensing and collaboration arrangements and the sale of NuPathe.
Before joining NuPathe, Mr. Marino was an attorney at the law firms of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP in Philadelphia, PA, and WilmerHale LLP in Boston, MA, where his practice focused on mergers and acquisitions, collaborations, financing transactions, corporate governance, securities and other general corporate matters.
Mr. Marino holds a JD from Boston College Law School and a Bachelor of Science in accountancy from Villanova University.
Ramona Lloyd, PhD, RAC
Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Quality
Ramona Lloyd, PhD, is Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Quality at Optinose. In this role, Dr. Lloyd is responsible for regulatory strategy and quality in support of development and commercialization activities.
A regulatory professional for more than 20 years, Dr. Lloyd has led or participated in the submission of numerous global investigational applications and successful marketing applications for small molecules, biologics and devices across multiple therapeutic areas.
Prior to joining Optinose, she served as both a consultant to the pharmaceutical industry and as an executive with Sanofi-Aventis, Bristol Myers-Squibb and Johnson & Johnson. She acted as Senior Vice President of Regulatory Affairs and Safety for ImClone Systems and has served as Vice President of Regulatory Affairs and Quality for public and private biotechs, leading global regulatory strategy, regulatory submissions through product approval and key meetings with global regulatory authorities.
Dr. Lloyd earned a doctorate in molecular genetics and microbiology from Robert Wood Johnson Medical School at Rutgers University and was a researcher at the Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine. She also earned a Regulatory Affairs Certification (RAC), the professional credential in regulation of healthcare products.
Vice President, Finance
Michele Janis joined Optinose in 2011 as Vice President, Finance, and is responsible for managing all accounting and finance activities within the Company.
With more than 15 years of accounting and financial management expertise, Ms. Janis previously held the role of Director of Business Analysis and Planning at Take Care Health Systems, a Walgreens company, where she was responsible for leading financial and business analytics for strategic initiatives.
Prior to joining Take Care Health Systems, Ms. Janis simultaneously served as CFO/Controller to several pharmaceutical and technology-based early-stage companies, after which she joined The National Digital Medical Archive, which specialized in medical imaging storage and analytics technology. Earlier in her career, she was the CFO for Creative Labs’ OEM division, a worldwide leader in products for the personal computer industry. She also served as Corporate Controller for Atlantic Dairy Cooperative, a milk distributor and dairy products manufacturer.
Ms. Janis holds an MBA in finance from La Salle University and a Bachelor of Science in accounting from West Chester University.
John Messina, PharmD
Senior Vice President, Clinical Development and Medical Affairs
John Messina is Senior Vice President, Clinical Development and Medical Affairs for Optinose. He joined the Company in 2010 and leads the development and implementation of all clinical programs as well as clinical components of regulatory submissions and interactions with regulatory agencies.
Prior to joining Optinose, Dr. Messina served as Vice President of Clinical Operations and Strategic Planning at Cephalon where he led the development, planning and execution of all company clinical programs across therapeutic areas. Additionally, he has worked at Purdue Pharma, Novartis Pharmaceuticals and Sandoz Pharmaceuticals. He has conducted clinical trials in all phases of development and served as a clinical lead for multiple NDA submissions and product launches.
Dr. Messina earned a PharmD from Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, and completed an industrial clinical pharmacy fellowship at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. He has published extensively within the fields of analgesia and CNS clinical research.
Vice President, Operations & Program Management
Sheila Bergey is Vice President, Operations & Program Management. With a track record of strategically repositioning organizations, building teams, and driving the execution that brings about new levels of performance across a range of disciplines, she is uniquely qualified to lead this integrated function.
Most recently, Ms. Bergey was with MannKind Corporation, a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing drug-device combination-product technologies. Previously, during a 25-year tenure with Johnson & Johnson, she held leadership positions in operations/supply chain, served as CIO for multiple operating companies and was the VP of Change Management – a role combining strategic planning, program management, IT, process excellence and procurement. She also founded Saybrook Consulting and served as COO of Lindi Skin, a skin care company in the Philadelphia area.
Ms. Bergey holds an MBA from Temple University and a Bachelor of Science in business administration – operations management from Drexel University.
Vice President, Technical Operations
Ricci Whitlow joined Optinose in July 2017 as Vice President, Technical Operations. In this role, Ms. Whitlow has responsibility for all activities associated with chemistry, manufacturing and controls (CMC) development of the product portfolio, clinical supplies manufacturing/management and the commercial supply chain.
Ms. Whitlow has spent more than 20 years in the pharmaceutical, biologics and medical device industry, with prior experience in product development, manufacturing, global supply chain and logistics, regulatory, quality and project management with Johnson & Johnson and LifeCell, a private-equity-owned regenerative medicine company.
Prior to joining Optinose, Ms. Whitlow was Vice President, Operations with Catalent, a contract development, delivery and supply partner of oral, sterile and inhalation products for the pharmaceutical industry. During her tenure at Catalant, she had general management responsibilities for nine manufacturing facilities within the Catalent network.
Ms. Whitlow holds an MBA from the TRIUM program of NYU/LSE/HEC and a Bachelor of Science in industrial engineering from Texas A&M University. She is also a certified Six Sigma green belt.
Karen E. Brophy
Vice President, Human Resources
Ms. Brophy joined Optinose in February 2018 as Vice President, Human Resources. She is responsible for the strategic implementation of human resources programs and practices at Optinose. She has more than 30 years of diverse experience in human resources across a number of industries including biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and information management. Throughout her career, she has built and led HR teams while guiding companies through many types of organizational change.
Ms. Brophy joined Aventis at its formation in New Jersey and was responsible for supporting the North American Medical Affairs and Oncology Business Units. In addition, she played a key role in the integration of the North American Medical Affairs and Integrated Healthcare Markets organizations following the acquisition of Aventis by Sanofi. Ms. Brophy joined Celgene prior to the launch of Revlimid, supporting the commercial organization throughout the pre-launch, launch and first year of sales. Following that, she moved into HR operations roles, leading the staffing and other HR support functions during a significant period of growth for Celgene. Ms. Brophy was VP of Human Resources at Dendreon, leading the HR function and organization through an intense period of change. Most recently, she was VP of Human Resources at Agilex Fragrances.
Ms Brophy holds a Bachelor of Arts in international relations from Mount Holyoke College.
Per G. Djupesland, MD, PhD
Co-Founder, Chief Scientific Officer of OptiNose AS
Per G. Djupesland, MD, PhD, is the inventor of Optinose’s patented, bi-directional nasal drug delivery technology and is a Co-Founder of the Company. Dr. Djupesland is a lead inventor on all 39 Optinose patent families/patent applications and serves as Chief Scientific Officer of OptiNose AS, with primary responsibility for device discovery and early development efforts. These early development efforts include identifying new product opportunities that use bi-directional technology, advancing the design of devices using the bi-directional technology to treat a variety of medical conditions and conducting Phase I and IIa trials with new “nose-to-brain” applications for the technology.
Dr. Djupesland is an Otolaryngologist (ENT) with a specialization in rhinology and more than 25 years of clinical experience. Among other positions prior to Optinose, he served as a Clinical Research Fellow at The Hospital for Sick Children and Toronto General in Toronto, Canada, primarily studying the role of nitric oxide in the upper airways. Dr. Djupesland has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed articles in international medical journals and has lectured at numerous international scientific conferences.
Dr. Djupesland earned medical and doctorate degrees in the fields of nasal physiology and aerodynamics from the University of Oslo.
Helena Kyttari Djupesland
Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of OptiNose AS (Norway)
Ms. Djupesland helped to found OptiNose AS in Norway. From 2000 to 2010, she raised funds, negotiated venture capital deals, led recruiting efforts and was responsible for managing clinical development for Phase I and IIa studies. Ms. Djupesland’s current responsibilities include administration of ongoing new product development efforts in device discovery and early development research conducted by OptiNose AS. Her responsibilities entail managing research vendor contracts, grant funding, project plans and timelines and serving as an R&D project manager for early phase clinical trials. She also plays a role in management of the Company’s patent portfolio.
Prior to Optinose, Ms. Djupesland spent five years as Vice President, Operations at Kvaerner Energy, Thermal Power (acquired by GE Company), where she was responsible for project management, engineering, procurement and manufacturing. She also spent nine years at Storebrand International Reinsurance, the largest insurance company in Norway, gaining extensive experience in international business, risk evaluations and negotiating and closing deals.
Ms. Djupesland graduated from the Law School at the University of Athens and earned a Master in Administrative Science from the University of Paris II and an MBA from the Norwegian School of Management. She is fluent in four languages.