Governance at a Glance
|Board Members||Audit||Compensation, Nominating and Corporate Governance|
Yutaka Niihara, MD, MPH
Dr. Niihara has been involved in patient care and research for sickle cell disease for most of his career, and is the principal inventor of the patented L-glutamine therapy for treatment of sickle cell disease. He is a cofounder of Emmaus, principal investigator for LABioMed at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and Professor Emeritus of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He founded the company in 2000.
His experience includes serving as President, Chief Executive Officer and Medical Director of Hope International Hospice. Board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Internal Medicine/Hematology, Dr. Niihara is licensed to practice medicine in both the U.S. and Japan. His honors include the LifetimeAchievement Award, from the Sickle Cell Disease Foundation of California and the Abigail Kawananako Award. Dr. Niihara received his B.A. in Religion from Loma Linda University, obtained his M.D. from Loma Linda University School of Medicine in 1986, and received his MPH from Harvard School of Public Health in 2006.
Robert Dickey IV
Robert Dickey IV has experience as a CFO as well as in other C-level and Board positions in life sciences and medical device companies, both private and publicly-traded, across all stages of development. Before that, he was an investment banker, mostly at Lehman Brothers. He is currently a Managing Director at Danforth Advisors which provides finance support and strategy for life science companies, including strategic CFO advisory, financial analysis, capital raising, and transactional support/execution for public offerings and M&A. Previously, he was CFO at Motif Bio PLC, a dual-listed, advanced stage antibiotics company. Mr. Dickey’s prior operating experience includes CFO at Tyme Technologies; CFO at NeoStem (now Caladrius Biosciences); SVP at Hemispherx; CFO and Business Unit Manager at StemCyte; and CEO and COO at Protarga. Mr. Dickey holds an M.B.A. from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and an A.B. from Princeton University.
Willis C. Lee
Mr. Lee has more than 30 years of management and consulting experience with influential companies in the healthcare and semiconductor industries. Prior to joining Emmaus, Mr. Lee led worldwide sales and business development of Yield Dynamics’ product group at MKS Instruments. He joined the Company in 2009 and has served as Chief Operating Officer since May 2011.
He has held various managerial and senior positions at companies including HPL, Syntricity and Reden & Anders, a subsidiary of United Healthcare that provides actuarial services including capitation and risk assessment analyses for healthcare insurance carriers. Mr. Lee received his B.S. and M.S. in Physics from University of Hawaii and University of South Carolina, respectively. He was a member of the American Physical Society, completed TQM/SPC programs, and has published papers in Nuclear Instruments and Methods.
Masaharu Osato, MD
Dr. Osato has been practicing gastroenterology and internal medicine ("GI") at his private practice, the Osato Medical Clinic, Inc. in Torrance, CA since 2001. He completed a GI Fellowship at the Harbor UCLA Medical Center and served as General Internist and Director of Health Screening Center at the Tokyo Adventist Hospital in Japan, as well as at the Kobe Adventist Hospital in Japan. He attended the Loma Linda University School of Medicine in California and completed an internal medicine residency at the Kettering Memorial Medical Center in Dayton, Ohio. Dr. Osato also completed one year of pediatric residency at the Loma Linda University Medical Center.
Robin Smith, MD
Dr. Smith is a global thought leader in the regenerative medicine industry. She received her M.D. from Yale University and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of Business. She is Chairman of the Board of MYnd Analytics, Inc. During her tenure as CEO of the Caladrius Biosciences, Inc. (formerly NeoStem Inc.) family of companies (NASDAQ: CLBS), she pioneered the company’s innovative business model, combining proprietary cell therapy development with a successful contract development and manufacturing organization. Dr. Smith raised over $200 million, completing six acquisitions and one divestiture while the company won an array of industry awards and business recognition including a #1 ranking in the Tri-State region (for two years in a row), and #11 nationally, on Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500 ™, and Frost & Sullivan’s North American Cell Therapeutics Technology Innovation Leadership Award.
In 2008, Dr. Smith founded The Stem for Life Foundation (SFLF), a nonpartisan, 501(c)(3) educational organization devoted to fostering global awareness of the potential for regenerative medicine to treat and cure a range of deadly diseases and debilitating medical conditions, as opposed to merely treating their symptoms. In 2010, in order to bring the charity’s mission to a global audience, Dr. Smith forged a historic, first-of-its-kind partnership with The Vatican. As part of this relationship, The Vatican and SFLF collaborate to create high-profile initiatives that help catalyze interest and development of cellular therapies that could ultimately reduce human suffering on a global scale. Dr. Smith has served as Chairman of the Board and President of the Stem for life Foundation since its inception and is expanding its mission further under the Cura brand to bring resources to fund cell therapy clinical trials and assist in accelerating enrollment and completion.
Dr. Smith maintains a regular column on these topics for The Huffington Post. She is a winner of the 2014 Brava! Award, which recognizes top women business leaders in the Greater New York area. She was also a finalist for the 2014 EY Entrepreneur of The Year award for the New York area, recognizing entrepreneurs who demonstrate excellence and success in the areas of innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities.
In addition, Dr. Smith has extensive experience serving in executive and board level capacities for various medical enterprises and healthcare-based entities. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Rockwell Medical ( NASDAQ: RMTI), Signal Genetics (NASDAQ: SGNL), and Bioxcel Corporation. She also serves as Vice President and as a Directors of the Board of the STOQ Foundation in Rome and the Board of Overseers at the NYU Langone Medical Center in NYC. She previously served on the Board of Trustees of the NYU Langone Medical Center and is the past Chairman of the Board of Directors for the New York University Hospital for Joint Diseases.
Wei Peu Zen
Mr. Zen is Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Wai Kee Holdings Limited., a Hong Kong-based construction and infrastructure company whose shares are listed on the Main Board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange Limited. He is also the Chairman of Build King Holdings Limited and Co-Chairman of Road King Infrastructure Limited, both of which are subsidiaries of Wai Kee Holdings Limited. Mr. Zen has over 30 years of experience in civil engineering, and is responsible for the overall management of the Wai Kee Holdings Limited group of companies. He oversees the operations of the group’s construction, quarry and concrete divisions. Mr. Zen holds a B.Sc. degree in Engineering from The University of Hong Kong and a M.B.A. from The Chinese University of Hong Kong and is a member of both the Institution of Civil Engineers and fellow member of the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers and the Institute of Quarrying, UK, respectively. He is a past Honorary Treasurer of the Hong Kong Construction Association and a member of HKTDC Infrastructure Development Advisory Committee. He is also the President of the Hong Kong Contract Bridge Association.
Mr. Zwicker is the founder of Zwicker Advisory Group and has been its Chief Executive Officer since 2014. Mr. Zwicker served as Managing Director and held a variety of management positions at the investment banking firms of SG Cowen and Hambrecht & Quist. He also served as Managing Director and head of worldwide technology investment banking for Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette Securities Corporation, and as the President of WR Hambrecht + Co (WRH). Mr. Zwicker was a Director of Stirling Energy Systems, a Partner at WRH, and was also Head of Capital Markets.