Board of Directors
About our Board of Directors
Exelixis’ Board of Directors brings together an accomplished group of advisors and industry veterans from the fields of biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, clinical medicine and healthcare policy. Their diverse yet complementary experiences contribute invaluable, time-tested perspective to Exelixis’ global business strategy.
Stelios Papadopoulos, Ph.D.
Chairman of the Board, Exelixis, Inc.
Stelios Papadopoulos, Ph.D., a co-founder of Exelixis, has been a director since December 1994 and the Chair of the Board since January 1998. Dr. Papadopoulos retired as Vice Chairman of Cowen & Co., LLC in August 2006 after six years as an investment banker with the firm, where he focused on the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors. Prior to joining Cowen & Co., he spent 13 years as an investment banker at PaineWebber, Incorporated, where he was most recently Chairman of PaineWebber Development Corp., a PaineWebber subsidiary focusing on biotechnology. He joined PaineWebber in April 1987 from Drexel Burnham Lambert, where he was a Vice President in the Equity Research Department covering the biotechnology industry. Prior to Drexel, he was a biotechnology analyst at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette.
Before coming to Wall Street in 1985, Dr. Papadopoulos was on the faculty of the Department of Cell Biology at New York University Medical Center. Dr. Papadopoulos was a co-founder of Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a publicly held biopharmaceutical company dedicated to improving patient care by developing novel medicines for the treatment of hepatitis C, acquired by Hoffmann-La Roche Inc. in November 2011. Dr. Papadopoulos served as a member of the board of directors of Anadys Pharmaceuticals from 2000 to 2011 and as its chairman in 2011, prior to its acquisition.
Dr. Papadopoulos has also served as a member of the board of directors of four other publicly held companies: Biogen, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of serious diseases, since 2008 and as its chairman since 2014; Regulus Therapeutics Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of medicines targeting microRNAs, since 2008, and as its chairman since 2013; Eucrates Biomedical Acquisition Corp., a special purpose acquisition company formed for the purpose of effecting a merger, share exchange, asset acquisition, share purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses, and as its chairman, since 2020; and BG Medicine, Inc., a diagnostics company focused on the development and commercialization of cardiovascular diagnostic tests, from 2003 until 2018. Dr. Papadopoulos was also co-founder and member of the board of directors of Cellzome Inc., a privately held drug discovery company acquired by GlaxoSmithKline in May 2012.
In the not-for-profit sector, Dr. Papadopoulos is a co-founder and Chairman of Fondation Santé, a member of the board of visitors of Duke Medicine, and a member of the Global Advisory Board of the Duke Institute for Health Innovation. Dr. Papadopoulos holds an M.S. in Physics, a Ph.D. in Biophysics and an M.B.A. in Finance, all from New York University.
Charles Cohen, Ph.D.
Charles Cohen, Ph.D., has been a director since November 1995. Dr. Cohen is an independent investor and from March 2015 to May 2019, he served as Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the board of directors of Perform Biologics, Inc., a privately held biotechnology start-up company. Previously, Dr. Cohen served as Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the board of directors of On Target Therapeutics, LLC, a privately held biotechnology start-up company, from June 2015 to June 2017. From May 2007 to December 2015, Dr. Cohen was a managing director of Synthesis Capital (formerly Advent Healthcare Ventures), a venture capital firm. From 2003 to 2007, Dr. Cohen was Vice President of Advent International, a global private equity firm.
From 2000 to 2002, Dr. Cohen was the Chief Executive Officer of Cellzome AG, a post-genomics biotechnology company. Prior to that time, Dr. Cohen co-founded Creative BioMolecules, Inc., a biotechnology company, in 1982 and was one of its directors and its Chief Executive Officer from 1985 to 1995. Dr. Cohen served as a member of the board of directors of the following publicly held companies: Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to improving patient care by developing novel medicines for the treatment of hepatitis C, from 2000 to 2005; and Anesiva, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel pharmaceutical products for pain management from 2005 to 2007. Dr. Cohen also served as the Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Cellzome AG, prior to its acquisition by GlaxoSmithKline in May 2012, and as the Chief Executive Officer of several other companies. Dr. Cohen received his B.A. from the State University of New York at Buffalo and his Ph.D. from New York University School of Medicine.
Carl B. Feldbaum, Esq.
Carl B. Feldbaum, Esq., has been a director since February 2007. Mr. Feldbaum serves as a member emeritus of the board of directors of BIO Ventures for Global Health, a non-profit organization, and is president emeritus of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), which is the world’s largest trade association representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations.
Mr. Feldbaum served as president of BIO from 1993 until his retirement in 2005. Prior to joining BIO, Mr. Feldbaum was chief of staff to Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania. He also was president and founder of Palomar Corporation, a national security “think tank” in Washington, D.C. Before founding Palomar Corporation, Mr. Feldbaum was Assistant to the Secretary of Energy and served as the Inspector General for defense intelligence in the U.S. Department of Defense. Mr. Feldbaum served as a member of the board of directors of the following publicly held companies: Actelion, Ltd, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of innovative drugs for diseases with significant unmet medical needs (acquired by Johnson & Johnson in 2017), from 2005 to 2015; Trovagene, Inc., a precision medicine biotechnology company focused on the development of oncology therapeutics for improved cancer care, from 2014 to 2015; and Connetics Corporation, a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapeutics for the dermatology market, from 2005 until its acquisition by Stiefel Laboratories, Inc. in 2006. Mr. Feldbaum holds an A.B. in Biology from Princeton University and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.
Maria C. Freire, Ph.D.
Maria C. Freire, Ph.D., has been a director since April 2018. Since November 2012, Dr. Freire has served as President and Executive Director and as a member of the board of directors of the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health. From March 2008 to November 2012, she served as President and as a member of the board of directors of the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation. Prior to joining the Lasker Foundation, Dr. Freire served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development from 2001 to 2008 and Director of the Office of Technology Transfer at the National Institutes of Health from 1995 to 2001.
Dr. Freire has served on the board of directors of Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. a publicly held urban office real estate investment trust uniquely focused on collaborative life science and technology campuses, since April 2012, and has previously served on the boards of numerous national and international organizations, including the Science Board of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the World Health Organization Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Public Health and the United Nations Secretary General’s High Level Panel on Access to Medicines. Dr. Freire is also a member of the National Academy of Medicine and the Council on Foreign Relations, and she is the recipient of numerous awards, including a 2017 Gold Stevie Award for “Woman of the Year,” the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service, the Arthur S. Fleming Award and the Bayh-Dole Award. Dr. Freire holds a Ph.D. in Biophysics from the University of Virginia and a B.S. from the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia in Lima, Peru.
Alan M. Garber, M.D., Ph.D.
Alan M. Garber, M.D., Ph.D., has been a director since January 2005. He became Provost of Harvard University, Mallinckrodt Professor of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School, and a Professor in the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and in the Department of Economics at Harvard in September 2011. Before moving to Harvard, from 1998 until August 2011, he was the Henry J. Kaiser Jr. Professor, a Professor of Medicine, and a Professor (by courtesy) of Economics, Health Research and Policy, and of Economics in the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. Dr. Garber also served as the Director of the Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research and the Center for Health Policy at Stanford. During his tenure at Stanford University, Dr. Garber also served as a Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and as a staff physician at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System. Dr. Garber has served as a member of the board of directors of Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, a publicly held biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing therapies for the treatment of cystic fibrosis, since June 2017.
In addition, Dr. Garber is a one of several co-founders and serves as the chair of the board of directors for the Center for Advanced Biological Innovation and Manufacturing, a public benefit limited liability company in the Boston metro area created to encourage collaboration among multiple institutions, with the ultimate aim of promoting the development and production of cell and gene therapies, biologics, immunotherapies and other emerging technologies that can benefit patients. Dr. Garber is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, the American Society of Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, the Royal College of Physicians and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Dr. Garber is also a Research Associate with the National Bureau of Economic Research and served as founding Director of its Health Care Program for nineteen years. He has also served as a member of the National Advisory Council on Aging at the National Institutes of Health, as a member of the Board of Health Advisers of the Congressional Budget Office and as Chair of the Medicare Evidence Development and Coverage Advisory Committee at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Dr. Garber previously served on the editorial board of a number of acclaimed scientific journals and has received numerous awards and honors. Dr. Garber holds an A.B. summa cum laude, an A.M. and a Ph.D., all in Economics, from Harvard University, and an M.D. with research honors from Stanford University.
Vincent Marchesi, M.D., Ph.D.
Vincent T. Marchesi, M.D., Ph.D., has been a director since May 2001. Since 1973, Dr. Marchesi has been a Professor of Pathology and Cell Biology at Yale University and, since 1991, the Director of the Boyer Center for Molecular Medicine at Yale University. In 1982, Dr. Marchesi co-founded Molecular Diagnostics, Inc., a diagnostic development company. Dr. Marchesi was formerly Chair of Pathology at the Yale-New Haven Hospital. Dr. Marchesi holds an M.D. from Yale University and a Ph.D. from Oxford University, and is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine.
Michael M. Morrissey, Ph.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Michael M. Morrissey, Ph.D., has served as a director and as Exelixis’ President and Chief Executive Officer since July 2010. Dr. Morrissey has held positions of increasing responsibility at Exelixis since he joined the company in February 2000, including serving as President of Research and Development from January 2007 until July 2010. From 1991 to 2000, Dr. Morrissey held several positions at Berlex Biosciences, last holding the position of Vice President, Discovery Research. Earlier in his career, Dr. Morrissey served as a Senior Scientist and Project Team Leader in Medicinal Chemistry at CIBA-Geigy Corporation. Dr. Morrissey serves as a member of the board of directors of XWPharma Ltd., a privately held, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. He is the author of numerous scientific publications in medicinal chemistry and drug discovery and an inventor on 70 issued U.S. patents and 25 additional published U.S. patent applications. Dr. Morrissey holds a B.S. (Honors) in Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Harvard University.
George Poste, DVM, Ph.D., FRS
George Poste, DVM, Ph.D., FRS, has been a director since August 2004. Since February 2009, Dr. Poste has been the Chief Scientist at Complex Adaptive Systems Initiative and Regents’ Professor and Del E. Webb Professor of Health Innovation at Arizona State University. From May 2003 to February 2009, Dr. Poste served as the director of the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University. Dr. Poste has served as the Chief Executive Officer of Health Technology Networks, a consulting company that specializes in the application of genomic technologies and computing in healthcare, since 2000. From 1992 to 1999, he was the Chief Science and Technology Officer and President, R&D, of SmithKline Beecham Corporation, a pharmaceutical company (later merged into GlaxoSmithKline plc).
Dr. Poste served on the Defense Science Board of the U.S. Department of Defense from 2001 to 2010 and is a member of other organizations dedicated to advancing defenses against bioweapons and biowarfare. Dr. Poste has served as a member of the board of directors of Caris Life Sciences, a privately held medical diagnostics company, since 2009. Previously, Dr. Poste served as a member of the board of directors of Monsanto Company, a publicly held provider of agricultural products and solutions, from February 2003 until its acquisition by Bayer Aktiengesellschaft in June 2018, and as the Non-Executive Chairman of Orchid Cellmark, Inc., a publicly held DNA forensics company, from April 2000 until its acquisition by the Laboratory Corporation of America in August 2009. Dr. Poste is a Fellow of the Royal Society, the UK Academy of Medical Sciences, Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and various other prestigious organizations and has been awarded honorary doctorates from several universities. Dr. Poste holds a DVM in veterinary medicine and a Ph.D. in Virology from the University of Bristol, England and Board Certification in Pathology from the Royal College of Pathologists.
Julie Anne Smith
Julie Anne Smith has been a director since September 2016. Since August 2018, Ms. Smith has served as President and Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the board of directors of ESCAPE Bio Inc., a privately held, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel, precisely targeted therapeutics for genetically defined neurodegenerative diseases. From July 2017 until June 2018, Ms. Smith served as President and Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the board of directors of Nuredis, Inc., a privately held biotechnology company. Prior to Nuredis, she served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Raptor Pharmaceutical Corp., a publicly held biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing transformative treatments for people affected by rare and debilitating diseases, from January 2015 until the company’s acquisition by Horizon Pharma plc in October 2016, where she also served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from 2012 to 2014.
From 2008 to 2012, Ms. Smith served as Chief Commercial Officer of Enobia Pharmaceuticals prior to the company’s acquisition by Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Previously, Ms. Smith served as Vice President of Commercial at Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc from 2006 to 2008, as Vice President, Global Marketing at Genzyme General from 2001 to 2005, and helped to establish the operations and business development function for the biotech start-up, Novazyme Pharmaceuticals, from 2000 to 2001. Ms. Smith began her industry career at Bristol-Myers Squibb Company in 1996. Ms. Smith has served as a member of the board of directors of Stoke Therapeutics, Inc., a publicly held biotechnology company pioneering a new way to treat the underlying cause of genetic diseases by precisely unregulating protein expression, since June 2020. Previously, Ms. Smith served as a member of the board of directors of Audentes Therapeutics, Inc. a publicly held, clinical -stage biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing gene therapy products for patients suffering from serious, life-threatening rare diseases caused by single gene defects, from December 2016 until its acquisition by Astellas Pharma Inc. in January 2020, and as a Director on the Health and Emerging Companies Sections of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) board. Ms. Smith holds a B.S. in biological and nutritional sciences from Cornell University.
Lance Willsey, M.D.
Lance Willsey, M.D., has been a director since April 1997. Dr. Willsey was a founding partner of DCF Capital, a hedge fund focused on investing in the life sciences, from July 1998 to March 2002, and currently is a consultant to institutional investors in the field of oncology. Since 2000, Dr. Willsey has served on the Visiting Committee of the Department of Genitourinary Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute at Harvard Medical School. From July 1997 to July 1998, Dr. Willsey served on the Staff Department of Urologic Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. From July 1996 to July 1997, Dr. Willsey served on the Staff Department of Urology at Massachusetts General Hospital at Harvard University School of Medicine, where he was a urology resident from July 1992 to July 1996. From 2000 to 2010, Dr. Willsey served a member of the board of directors of Exact Sciences Corporation, a publicly held molecular diagnostics company focused on the early detection and prevention of the deadliest forms of cancer. Dr. Willsey holds a B.S. in Physiology from Michigan State University and an M.S. in Biology and an M.D., both from Wayne State University.
Jack L. Wyszomierski
Jack L. Wyszomierski, has been a director since February 2004. From June 2004 to June 2009, Mr. Wyszomierski served as the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of VWR International, LLC, a supplier of laboratory supplies, equipment and supply chain solutions to the global research laboratory industry. From 1982 to 2003, Mr. Wyszomierski held positions of increasing responsibility within the finance group at Schering-Plough Corporation, a health care company, culminating with his appointment as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in 1996. Prior to joining Schering-Plough, he was responsible for capitalization planning at Joy Manufacturing Company, a producer of mining equipment, and was a management consultant at Data Resources, Inc. Mr. Wyszomierski has served: as a member of the board of directors of XOMA Corporation, a publicly held biotech royalty aggregator, since August 2010; as a member of the board of directors of Athersys, Inc., a publicly held company engaged in the discovery and development of therapeutic product candidates, since June 2010; as a member of the board of directors of Solenis LLC, a privately held manufacturer of chemical products, since August 2014; and as a member of the board of directors of SiteOne Landscape Supply, Inc., a publicly held company that distributes landscape supply products, since April 2016.
Mr. Wyszomierski previously served as a member of the board of directors of: Unigene Laboratories, Inc., a publicly held biopharmaceutical company, from April 2010 to July 2013; and AssuraMed Holding, Inc., a privately held distributor of home healthcare products, from January 2011 until its acquisition by Cardinal Health Inc. in March 2013. Mr. Wyszomierski holds a M.S. in Industrial Administration and a B.S. in Administration, Management Science and Economics from Carnegie Mellon University.