Hunter Jackson, PhD, Chairman and CEO
Dr. Jackson was a co-founder and served as Chairman and CEO of NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: NPSP) from 1986 to 2006. Three products were brought forward during Dr. Jackson's tenure at NPS. The company’s first product was Sensipar®, for the treatment of secondary hyperparathyroidism and hypercalcemia. It was launched in 2004, is marketed by Amgen in the U.S. and Europe, by Kyowa Hakko Kirin in Asia, and will generate sales of over $1 billion in 2011. NPS’s second product, Preotact®, an injectable synthetic hormone for osteoporosis, is marketed by Nycomed in the EU and has received an “approvable” letter from the FDA. The company’s third product, Gattex™, an injectable peptide intended for the treatment of short bowel syndrome, successfully completed phase 3 clinical trials and NDA filing is expected in the fall of 2011. Under Dr. Jackson's leadership at NPS, the company entered into major agreements with Pfizer, FMC, GlaxoSmithKline, Amgen, Kirin, Abbott, AstraZeneca, Allergan, and Nycomed. Additionally, the company raised approximately $900 million dollars through a variety of public and private financings.
Dr. Jackson is a member of the Governing Authority of the Utah Science, Technology, and Research Economic Development Initiative (USTAR) and received the 1998 Ernst & Young Utah Entrepreneur of the Year Award and the 2002 Utah Governor’s Medal for Science and Technology.
Dr. Jackson has a BA from the University of Illinois, a PhD in Psychobiology from Yale University, and did his postdoctoral work in the Neurosurgery Department at the University of Virginia Medical Center.
Dean Li, MD, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer
Dr. Li is the H.A. & Edna Benning Endowed Professor of Medicine and Cardiology and the Director of the Molecular Medicine Program at the University of Utah. Dr. Li was a co-founder of Hydra Biosciences in 2001 and was head of research and development until the end of 2003. Hydra Biosciences is a privately held biopharmaceutical company focused on developing drugs through leveraging its expertise in ion channels and molecular regeneration. Dr. Li maintains his role as member of the scientific advisory board. He was the director of the Vascular Biotherapeutics Center of Excellence sponsored by the State of Utah Department of Economic Development.
Dr. Li is the recipient of multiple honors including the Established Investigator Award by the American Heart Association and Clinical Scientist Award in Translation Medicine from the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation. He is a member of the American Society of Clinical Investigators. He is the author of multiple manuscripts published in peer reviewed journals including Science and Nature.
Dr. Li received an undergraduate degree in Chemistry from the University of Chicago. He earned his MD and PhD from Washington University in St. Louis and completed his residency in Internal Medicine and was a clinical fellow in Cardiology at Barnes Hospital at Washington University Medical Center.
Val Antczak, JD
Val R. Antczak is a lawyer with extensive legal and business experience. Mr. Antczak was the Senior Vice President, Legal Affairs and General Counsel of NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. where he was responsible for all legal matters from 2005 to 2008. Mr. Antczak was a lawyer at Parsons Behle & Latimer from 1978 to 2005 where he had a successful corporate transaction and commercial litigation practice. He was also involved as a member of the Board of Directors and/or as Vice Chairman at Parsons Behle & Latimer for fifteen of those years. Mr. Antczak has been and remains involved serving a number of educational and community organizations, including, among others, as a member of the Executive Committee of the Economic Development Corporation of Utah, member of the Executive Committee of the Health Advocates, University of Utah Health Sciences Division and as a member of the Executive Committee of the University of Utah’s Commercial Advisory Board. Mr. Antczak received a B.S. in Finance from the University of Utah (magna cum laude) and a J.D. from the University of Utah College of Law.
David L. Clark, MS, MBA
Mr. Clark joined the faculty of Utah State University as the Executive Director of Entrepreneurial Programs in the Huntsman School of Business in October 2008.
From October 2005 to October 2008 he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Prolexys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately held biopharmaceutical firm developing novel cancer therapies in Salt Lake City, Utah. Prior to Prolexys he was Vice President, Corporate Affairs at the publically traded firm, NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. From 1996 till 2005 Mr. Clark was involved in business development, funding transactions, investor relations and corporate communications for NPS. From 1988 to 1996, Mr. Clark held the office of Vice President at AgriDyne Technologies, Inc. (Salt Lake City) with responsibilities for business development and administration. Before AgriDyne he was responsible for financial analysis and assisted in property acquisitions and financing for Clark Financial Corporation (Salt Lake City), a private investment firm from 1983 to 1988. From 1980 to 1983 Mr. Clark worked in division management and financial analysis and control at UI Group in Kennewick, Washington.
He holds a B.S. in botany from Brigham Young University (1976), an M.S. in agronomy with an emphasis in plant genetics from the University of Illinois (1978), and an M.B.A. from the University of Utah (1980). Mr. Clark is a founding trustee of the Utah Life Science Association and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees of the Utah Technology Council.
Jeffrey A. Fink, MBA
Mr. Fink is currently the Managing Director of Gambel Oaks Advisors, LLC, a strategic and financial advisory firm dedicated to the life sciences and allied industries. Mr. Fink spent over twenty years in the investment banking industry advising life science clients in the U.S. and Europe on the full range of financing and strategic advisory assignments. He was Head of Healthcare Investment Banking for Robert W. Baird & Co. in Chicago until 2007, and prior to that was a Partner in the Healthcare Group at Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein (the successor firm to Wasserstein Perella) and Head of Healthcare Mergers and Acquisitions for Vector Securities International, Inc., a dedicated biotechnology and life sciences investment bank. Mr. Fink’s advisory clients have included Schering AG, Genentech, Boehringer Ingleheim, F. Hoffman LaRoche, Ltd., the Ares Serrono Group and Celgene Pharmaceuticals. His financing clients have included NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Celgene Pharmaceuticals, ISIS Pharmaceuticals and Sepracor. Overall, Mr. Fink has advised clients on over $3 billion in closed transactions, including more than thirty initial public offerings and follow on public offerings.
Mr. Fink is a Chartered Financial Analyst and holds a B.A. from Kalamazoo College and an M.B.A from the University of Michigan.
Thomas N. Parks, PhD
Dr. Parks is the Vice President for Research at the University of Utah. He received a B.S. in Biology from the University of California at Irvine in 1972 and a Ph.D. in Psychobiology from Yale University in 1978. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Virginia Medical School in 1977-8, Dr. Parks joined the faculty at the University of Utah School of Medicine as an Assistant Professor of Anatomy and taught neuroscience to medical and graduate students. As an active neuroscience researcher for more than thirty years, Dr. Parks published extensively on the development of the central auditory system and the effects on the brain of early hearing loss. He has served on a variety of review panels for the National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation, as an officer of national organizations, and on foundation and editorial review boards. In 1992 Dr. Parks was appointed the George & Lorna Winder Professor of Neuroscience and chair of the Department of Neurobiology & Anatomy at the University of Utah and in 2004 became the founding executive director of the University’s Brain Institute, positions he held until his appointment as Vice President for Research in January 2008. In 1986, Dr. Parks co-founded NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. He served as Vice President of the company in 1987-8 and as a director until 2006.