• Laurie Halloran

    Laurie Halloran founded Halloran Consulting Group in 1998. Her time as a pediatric ICU nurse had inspired her to start a company that helps move new therapies through FDA processes to get them into the hands of patients desperately in need. By providing a strategic development team, innovative start-up companies could have access to world-class expertise at a fraction of the cost.  Since its humble beginnings, Halloran has grown into a leading consultancy of like-minded experts who are dedicated to improving human health by making life science companies better at what they do.

    As a passionate advocate for workforce development and women in leadership, Laurie started early in her career with these efforts as she established and developed Worldwide Training capabilities within Clinical Operations at PAREXEL International Corporation during the 10 years of the company’s rapid growth into a leading international Contract Research Organization. Her efforts have continued for 25 years, partnering with local and global trade associations and educational institutions to create entry points into the life science community in Massachusetts.

    Laurie has been named 2018 Women’s Business Enterprise Star by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) and has won a 2017 Enterprising Women of the Year Award from Enterprising Women Magazine.  Halloran Consulting Group was also named an Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Company for the past five years in a row. In 2015, Laurie was honored by the Boston Business Journal as a Woman of Influence, in 2010 was selected as one of the 100 Most Inspiring People in Life Science by PharmaVoice, and in 2009, she was awarded Clinical Researcher of the Year by the New England Chapter of the Associate of Clinical Research Professionals.

    Laurie lectures at Boston University Medical School and the Tufts Center for Drug Development Post-Graduate program. She has previously taught at George Washington University and Harvard University. Laurie earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Russell Sage College and a Master of Science in Management from Lesley University.  She is also a Prosci Certified Change Practitioner.

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  • Tom Snow

    Tom Snow is currently Global Franchise Head, Neurology and Immunology, at Sanofi Genzyme. He joined the organization in 2012 as Vice President of Global Commercial Strategy for MS, where he oversaw global marketing, market access, and market intelligence to support the successful global launches of Aubagio and Lemtrada. From 2014-2017, he served as regional Commercial Head for MS in Europe.

    Before joining Sanofi Genzyme, Tom spent 9 years with Merck Serono, both with the US commercial organization in Rockland, MA and global in Geneva, where he was the head of global strategic marketing for Merck Serono’s MS franchise. Tom spent the first half of his career at several marketing and communications agencies, working for both consumer and health care clients, including Schering, Novartis, and Bayer.

    Tom received his BA in English and Economics from Amherst College, and his MBA from Babson College, both in the US. In his “spare time,” Tom enjoys tennis, running, listening to music, playing the drums, and reading books. He also publishes a blog about spirituality and business travel (theabsoluteceiling.blogspot.com) which receives tens of unique visitors per month.

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  • Jay Mettetal

    Jay Mettetal is a Director in Early Oncology Bioscience at AstraZeneca, leading the preclinical drug combination strategy, and coordinating AZ preclinical efforts on late-stage programs. He initially joined AstraZeneca in 2013 to build a Modelling and Simulation group focusing on translational safety and ADME. The team heavily supported the oncology portfolio with an emphasis on Quantitative and Systems approaches to common adverse events for single agent and combination therapies. Prior to joining AstraZeneca, he worked at CombinatoRx developing algorithms for identification of optimal combinations, and subsequently held positions at Pfizer in the biologics unit as well as Millennium/Takeda where he was modelling and simulation team leader in DMPK. He earned his PhD in Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology applying quantitative approaches to problems in population heterogeneity and cellular signaling.

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  • Melissa Monahan

    Melissa is the Chief of Staff, President and CEO’s Office at Boston Medical Center Health System. Previously, she held the role of Associate Director of US Corporate Communications at EMD Serono, where she was responsible for positively positioning the company with external and internal audiences, driving the positive reputation of the company through digital, media and advertising support and setting the communications strategy to enable the business to achieve its business and scientific leadership goals.

    Prior to joining EMD Serono, Melissa was the Director of Strategic Communications at Boston Medical Center (BMC), New England’s largest safety-net hospital and trauma center. At BMC she managed the media relations and internal communications for the hospital and was responsible for developing and implementing broad, pro-active internal and external communications strategies in support of BMC’s key priorities.

    Earlier in her career, Melissa was a Senior Vice President at Rasky Baerlien Strategic Communications, where she managed the firm’s healthcare practice working with a range of high-profile healthcare companies and organizations.

    A graduate of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications, Melissa also serves on the Board of Healthworks Community Fitness, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing high-quality fitness opportunities and health education for women and children in low-income neighborhoods to prevent and treat lifestyle-related chronic diseases, improve health and fitness, and promote well-being and empowerment.

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  • Kendalle Burlin O’Connell

    As President and COO, Kendalle leads the strategic direction, global expansion, and business operations of the organization ensuring that MassBio offers the greatest value to its members and that Massachusetts life sciences companies have the best environment possible to research, develop, and commercialize breakthrough therapies and cures for people around the world who need and deserve them.

    Kendalle first came to MassBio in 2008 as Director of Purchasing and Strategic Alliance. She was promoted to Vice President of Member Services and General Counsel in 2012, then promoted to the organization’s first-ever Chief Operating Officer in February 2019. Throughout her tenure at MassBio, Kendalle has played a critical role in the growth of MassBio’s membership supporting its expansion to become the largest life sciences trade association in the world with over 1,400 members. Kendalle has overseen the rebrand of a number of MassBio’s core programs and services, including the MassBio Edge, MassBio’s savings and rewards program, and its expansion into other New England states by building valuable partnerships with the supplier community and creating MassBio’s highly-rated Employee Rewards program. She also led the development of the MassBioHub, MassBio’s conference and business center, and the creation of MassBio’s 2025 State of Possible Report. In 2019, Kendalle commenced a multi-year digital health initiative to support the convergence of digital tech and the life sciences in Massachusetts. And in 2021, Kendalle was instrumental in the launch of MassBio’s Partnering Week, a new initiative to bring together established biopharma companies with early-stage startups and academic institutions.

    Kendalle has reached extraordinary heights in her growing career. She was named a 2019 Boston Business Journal 40 under 40 honoree which recognizes a leader’s impact on Massachusetts’ industries. Currently, Kendalle serves as a Board of Director for the Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation (MassBioEd) and the New England Chapter of the March of Dimes. She also served as the Event Chair of the Black Tie for Babies Gala from 2016-2018.

    Prior to joining MassBio, Kendalle practiced law in the areas of Estate and Medicaid Planning, Probate and Asset Protection. She graduated cum laude from Sacred Heart University with a B.A. in Economics and Political Science and received her Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School. She resides in Haverhill, Massachusetts with her husband and two children.

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  • Mary Ellen Wiltrout

    Mary Ellen is the Director of Online and Blended Learning Initiatives and Lecturer in Digital Learning for the MIT Department of Biology. Mary Ellen completed her undergraduate degree in biological sciences from Carnegie Mellon University and her Ph.D.in biology studying translesion synthesis at MIT. From 2009 to 2013, she co-taught the molecular biology course at Harvard University as a preceptor. She also developed several of her own courses at Harvard Extension School.

    In 2013, Mary Ellen moved to the Broad Institute to be part of the core group with Michelle Mischke and Brian White to create Eric Lander’s MITx course, 7.00x Introduction to Biology – The Secret of Life. Mary Ellen now oversees the execution and evolution of MIT Department of Biology’s digital learning strategy with her group. The group develops digital learning content for MIT students and advises evidence-based teaching practices. They also implement these practices in the creation of world-wide bound MITx on edX MOOCs. Mary Ellen’s group completes research on the design of digital learning content as well.

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  • Rita Smith

    Rita is currently the Regional Business HR – US/PR Pharma for AbbVie Bioresearch Center (Worcester, MA) and Cambridge Research Center (Cambridge, MA), the company’s center of excellence for biologics and neuroscience.  In this role, lead the site’s Human Resources function and supports the Research & Development and Operations functions.

    Prior to this role, Rita was Director, Business Human Resources to AbbVie’s Chief Human Resources Officer and EVP and the global HR function.

    Rita joined AbbVie in December of 2013, as HR Business Partner Operations supporting Purchasing and Supplier Management (PSM) and Manufacturing Science & Technology (MS&T). She also held a previous role in Executive Development leading our manager level key talent workshop, the Emerging Leader Program (ELP) and Executive Coaching program for our global senior leaders.

    Prior to AbbVie, Rita was Senior HR Business Partner of Operations Business Group (OBG) in the Defence Business at Rolls Royce and held progressively responsible HR Business Partner and Labor Relations roles at Ford Motor Company.  Rita started her career as a Staff Attorney in house counsel to Service Employees International Employees (SEIU).  Rita has a Juris Doctorate (JD) and Master’s of Public Administration (MPA) from The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio.

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  • Shelley Seymour

    Shelley is an educator at Hampshire Regional High School in Westhampton, MA, where she has taught biology and the school’s life science electives since 2005.

    She works with high school students of all levels, and she aims to make biology accessible and significant to all. She especially enjoys revealing students’ sense of wonder and curiosity for the world around them and giving them a place to develop and explore with purpose. An important core value Shelley holds as an educator is to put teaching people above teaching material and to always consider how students will go out and interact with the world around them using what they have experienced in her classroom.

    Prior to working at Hampshire, Shelley started her teaching career in the Springfield, MA public schools, where she spent four years teaching middle school science. Shelley holds a B.A. in Biology from Connecticut College and an M.Ed. in Secondary Science Education from UMass, Amherst.

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  • Lora Marden

    Lora is the Vice President of Patient Advocacy, Engagement & Innovation at Cogent Biosciences. She has over 15 years of experience working in the rare disease biotech space and social services. Prior to joining Cogent, she held several roles of increasing leadership responsibility in the areas of Marketing, Patient Services, Operations, and Patient Advocacy at Sanofi-Genzyme, Alnylam, Sobi, and Kiniksa Pharmaceuticals. She began her career with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as a Social Worker providing case management and support for underserved families in the state. As a part of the Sanofi Talent Executive Program, she helped develop a Career Lattice vs. Ladder Summit and Mentorship Program. While at Sanofi Genzyme, she also received the Sanofi Champion of Customers Award, which is granted to the top 1% in the company globally.

    Lora received her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Rochester and completed the Strategic Marketing Management Executive Education Program at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. She is also a member of the Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah and is passionate about professional development, mentorship, diversity, and inclusion in biotech and life sciences.

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  • Robert Gottlieb

    Robert, who is the Principal at the communications and strategy consulting firm, RMG Associates,  has more than 30 years of experience in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries as a consultant on strategy and communications, in-house communications director, and journalist. He has substantial experience and a strong track record in work with well over 100 companies and organizations ranging from start-ups in and outside of the U.S. to multi-nationals. Robert and RMG Associates bring particular expertise in corporate positioning, external and internal communications strategy, and preparation for financing and partnering.  He has helped more than 20 clients develop business plans to support venture and public financings.

    Robert co-founded Feinstein Kean Healthcare (now a division of Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide), a Massachusetts-based communications and business consulting firm focused exclusively on biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and related healthcare organizations. Robert has been an active member of the biotechnology community in Massachusetts for more than 25 years. Robert served as an advisor to the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council for over 15 years. He also participates as a mentor in MIT’s Venture Mentoring Service and as a member of the Board of Directors of the New England Israel Business Council.

    Robert holds a B.A. degree from Trinity College (Connecticut).

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