movers-shakers-spotlightIndustry Veteran Bruce Rooke Joins Fingerpaint

Former GSW Worldwide Global Creative Director and touted industry veteran Bruce Rooke recently joined Fingerpaint, a full-service marketing agency. He will lead an ideation/innovation group to expand the agency through communication prospects. Adding Rooke’s decades of consumer and healthcare experience to the team, Fingerpaint anticipates new communication and partnership ideas, increased international presence and new business opportunities.

Rooke notes, “Fingerpaint has a great combination of experience, talent, agility, and independence that few others possess. We want clients to demand more and demand different.” The industry vet previously managed major accounts including Ford and Goodyear while serving as Executive Creative Director for J. Walter Thompson. He also won the CLIO Healthcare Awards first-ever “Lifetime Achievement Award” in 2011.

Peter Rizzuto Appointed To Senior Leadership Team as AXON Expands

Following the appointment of Peter Rizzuto, Founder and President of Veraxis Health Communications (VHC), to AXON’s senior leadership team, AXON announced that VHS has been folded into its company under the AXON name. AXON is a specialist healthcare consultancy, and Rizzuto adds more than 30 years of experience as a seasoned medical education and communications leader in pharmaceuticals and biotechnology.

“With the addition of the VHC team members into our organization, AXON can be even more proactive in helping clients achieve ambitious goals, manage business challenges, and create new opportunities, ” says Mario R. Nacinovich, Jr. MSc, Managing Partner of AXON US.



Promoted Catherine Wertjes to Head of Ethics & Compliance with responsibility for ethics and compliance, anti-bribery and anti-corruption initiatives worldwide, effective April 1, 2016. She will be based at Astellas’ headquarters for the Americas in Northbrook, IL. Wertjes previously held positions at Fujisawa Healthcare and G.D. Searle & Co.

BioPharmX Corporation

Appoints Marie-Louise Bots as Senior Vice President of Corporate Development to guide the company’s licensing and strategic partnerships worldwide. The veteran dealmaker previously served at Altadis USA as Vice President of International Business Development.

BioRestorative Therapies, Inc.

Adds former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of KeySpan Corporation, Robert B. Catell, to its Board of Directors. His executive and operational leadership skills make him an ideal candidate. He is also currently serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Advanced Energy Research and Technology Center at Stony Brook University.

Cannabis Science, Inc.

Welcomes Mieko Hester-Perez to its Scientific Advisory Board. The company specializes in the development of cannabis-based medicine—and is now focusing on autism treatment. Hester-Perez is a leading autism activist acknowledged for sharing her autistic son’s advancement using medical cannabis. She co-founded The Unconventional Foundation for Autism.

Clearside Biomedical

The late-stage clinical biopharmaceutical company appointed Richard J. Croarkin to its Board of Directors. Croarkin previously served in executive positions at Alcon, Inc. and Nestlé Health Science S.A., among others. He brings extensive global financial experience to the board. He also serves on the board of Aerie Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

DIA (The Drug Information Association)

Appoints Carol Zhu as Senior Vice President and Managing Director for DIA Greater China, which is focused on the acceleration of healthcare product development. Zhu tallies 20 years of experience in clinical research, business operations, and project management in the pharmaceutical industry. She recently served as Senior Program Officer for R&D Programs at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Promoted John Kemble to an Executive Vice President. Known as a creative visionary, Kemble has more than 20 years of experience in the industry, delivering powerful brand experiences across all multichannel media. Before Dudnyk, he served 8 years in the U.S. Marine Corp. Laurie Bartolomeo was also promoted to an Executive Vice President. Bartolomeo has 15 years experience—and is known for developing award-winning brand campaigns.

Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA)

Welcomes Heather Bresch once again as Chair of its board of Directors for the duration of a year. She has previously served as chair for the company in 2004 and 2005. Bresch is CEO at Mylan, a global pharmaceutical company committed to setting new standards in healthcare.


Announces that Nichol Pelchat is now the company’s Commercial Sourcing Leader. He has more than 15 years of experience in the industry, having previously served at Valeant, BMS, Roche Diagnostics and Eli Lily. Matchbook identifies itself as one of the leading sourcing partners in the industry, offering strategic and procurement services to fast growing biotech companies.

Neuralstem, Inc.

Appoints Richard J. Daly as Chief Executive Officer and President. He brings more than 25 years experience in commercial pharmaceutical leadership including, sales, marketing, and operations, to the company’s Board of Directors. Daly replaces Richard Garr, JD who has occupied these positions since co-founding the company in 1996.


Adds Pierre Schwich to the company as Chief Financial Officer. Schwich brings more than 35 years experience in financial leadership for public and private companies. He previously served as CFO for Cellectis, and is especially recognized for helping companies that are experiencing major growth.

Unum Therapeutics

Brings Malcolm Brenner, MD, PhD to its Advisory Board to support the company’s research plan and contribute to the advancement of the company’s Antibody-Coupled T-Cell Receptor platform. Brenner’s focal point is gene therapy and cancer-related immunotherapies (including genetic modification of T-cells). He is the Founding Director of the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston Methodist Hospital and Texas Children’s Hospital.


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