President and Chief Executive Officer
William K. McVicar, Ph.D., was appointed CEO in July 2017 after joining Flex Pharma in April 2017 as President of Research Development. Dr. McVicar brings to Flex Pharma approximately 30 years of clinical development experience. Prior to joining Flex Pharma, Dr. McVicar served as Executive Vice President of Pharmaceutical Development, Chief Scientific Officer, and President during his tenure at Inotek. As Vice President of Development Operations at Sepracor, he oversaw the development, FDA review, and approval of multiple NDAs and SNDAs, including BROVANA , XOPENEX MDI , and XOPENEX s pediatric approval, which were each approved in a single 10-month review cycle. Prior to Sepracor, Dr. McVicar held various positions of increasing responsibility at Sandoz, Novartis and Rhone Poulenc Rorer.
Dr. McVicar earned his B.S. in Chemistry from the State University of New York College at Oneonta and his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Vermont.
Vice President, Clinical Operations
David Golod brings a strong and broad background in drug development to Flex Pharma with 18 years of experience in the Pharmaceutical Industry. David started in Clinical Research at Solvay Pharmaceuticals, where he was the Senior Clinical Scientist of Cardiovascular Clinical Operations and Medical Affairs. David followed his time at Solvay becoming the Director of Clinical Research at Akros Pharma, Inc. where he worked on Phase I – Phase II programs across nine separate therapeutic areas. After his time at Akros, David led the clinical development programs for Pear Tree Pharmaceuticals focusing on Women s Health and helped Javelin Pharmaceuticals file an NDA for Dyloject. Most recently, David headed the Program Operations Management Department within Clinical Development Execution at Vertex Pharmaceuticals in Boston, where he was responsible for planning, execution, and oversight of all clinical programs for Cystic Fibrosis, Oncology, and Pain. Most notably, the clinical programs that David oversaw at Vertex resulted in approvals for Kalydeco and Orkambi, successful completion and readout of the VX-661 CFTR Corrector Program, and initiation of the clinical programs for the Next Generation CFTR Correctors.
David received his Ph.D. in Physiological and Pharmacological Sciences from Emory University in Atlanta. He received his M.B.A. from the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia and his B.S. in Biomedical Engineering from Purdue University.
Rob Hadfield joined Flex Pharma from Cooley LLP, where he was an attorney in the firm s business department. At Cooley, Mr. Hadfield represented companies in their public company reporting compliance obligations, venture capital financings, mergers and acquisitions and general corporate matters. Previously, Mr. Hadfield was corporate counsel at Kiva Systems prior to its acquisition by Amazon. At Kiva, Mr. Hadfield was part of a two person legal team responsible for managing all legal aspects of the company s business. Prior to law school, Mr. Hadfield was a financial analyst in the health care investment banking group of SG Cowen.
Mr. Hadfield holds a B.S. degree in finance from Providence College, and a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Chief Financial Officer
John McCabe joined Flex Pharma from ARIAD Pharmaceuticals, where he was Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer. Previously, he served as Vice President and Corporate Controller at Charles River Associates, where he was responsible for all aspects of global financial accounting, planning, and reporting. Prior to Charles River Associates, he was Director and strategic business unit Controller at Biogen Idec, managing all accounting and government pricing functions for the U.S. commercial business, including Avonex, Tysabri, and Rituxan. Mr. McCabe started his career at Arthur Andersen Co., where he advanced to an Audit Manager and he later held financial positions at two technology companies.
Mr. McCabe holds B.S. degrees in accounting and management information systems from Babson College, and an M.B.A from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Vice President, Research and Translational Development
Dr. Short brings to Flex Pharma 15 years of experience and a diverse skillset across many disciplines including biotechnology, small molecule discovery, pharmacology, translational research and early clinical development. Prior to joining Flex Pharma Dr. Short was Sr. Director of Research at Zalicus and CombinatoRx r esponsible for the execution of research and early development including discovery, nonclinical development and translational research involving novel calcium and sodium ion channel blockers. Throughout his career in the biotechnology sector, Dr. Short has led research programs across multiple indications including oncology, inflammation, anti-infectives, wound-healing, pain and neural signaling.
Dr. Short earned both Ph.D. and bachelor degrees in Chemistry from the University of Virginia. He performed his post-doctoral studies in the lab of Noble laurate Jack Szostak focusing on developing innovative technology to profile proteome-wide protein-protein interactions.
Vice President, Corporate Development and Program Management
Angelene brings to Flex Pharma experience drawn from healthcare consulting, business development and program management across public and private biotechnology companies. Before joining Flex Pharma, Ms. Simonello spent 8 years at Biogen where she held roles in Corporate Development, focusing on M A and Immunology in-licensing activities and, most recently as Program Director for Eloctate where she led a program team from pre-clinical studies to global approvals. Her career in biotech began in business development and alliance management at ViaCell and prior to that, she was an Analyst in Arthur D. Little s healthcare practice.
Ms. Simonello holds a B.S. degree in biochemistry from Mount Holyoke College, and received her M.S. from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.
Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Wessel is our Chief Medical Officer and a board certified neurologist with extensive drug development experience, including serving as the medical lead for three products approved in United States: RAZADYNE at Johnson Johnson , LUNESTA at Sepracor, Inc. and AMPYRA at Acorda Therapeutics, Inc.
Prior to joining Flex Pharma, Dr. Wessel was an independent consultant to several biotechnology and large pharmaceutical companies, including Concert Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Alkermes plc, Sanofi SA and Novartis AG. Previously, Dr. Wessel was the Chief Medical Officer of Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. from November 2008 until September 2011. Between March 2002 and October 2008, Dr. Wessel was employed in various leadership positions at Sepracor, Inc., including Senior Vice President of Clinical Research. Before joining Sepracor, Dr. Wessel worked on several CNS projects at Janssen Pharmaceuticals in Europe and the U.S. Before working in the pharmaceutical industry, Dr. Wessel held several academic and research positions.
Dr. Wessel received his M.D. from the University of Munich School of Medicine and completed his Ph.D. in experimental neurobiology at the Max-Planck-Institute for Psychiatry in Martinsried, Germany. He completed his residency in neurology at New York Hospital and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (Cornell University Medical Center).
Senior Vice President, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications
Ms. Woo brings to Flex Pharma 20 years of experience in investor relations, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, previously serving as Vice President of Investor Relations for Biogen Idec for 12 years and investor relations consultant to Ironwood Pharmaceuticals and Cubist Pharmaceuticals. During her tenure at Biogen Idec, Ms. Woo managed investor communications through several critical periods, including the overturning of Avonex orphan drug exclusivity, the Tysabri suspension and re-introduction, and the proxy battles with dissident shareholder activist, Carl Icahn. Prior to business school, Ms. Woo was a financial analyst in the investment banking group of Lehman Brothers.