Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Board
Mr. Cola brings a wealth of leadership experience in the biopharmaceutical industry. Prior to joining Avalo, Mr. Cola served as President and CEO of Aevi Genomic Medicine since September 2013. Prior to joining Aevi Genomic Medicine, Mr. Cola served as President of Specialty Pharmaceuticals at Shire plc, a global specialty pharmaceutical company (2007 - April 2012). He joined Shire in 2005 as EVP of Global Therapeutic Business Units and Portfolio Management. Prior to joining Shire, he was with Safeguard Scientifics, Inc., a growth capital provider to life sciences and technology companies, where he served as President of the Life Sciences Group. While at Safeguard, Mr. Cola served as Chairman and CEO of Clarient, Inc., a cancer diagnostics company subsequently acquired by GE Healthcare, and as Chairman of Laureate Pharma, Inc. Prior to Safeguard Scientifics, Mr. Cola held senior positions in product development and commercialization at Astra Merck, a top 20 US pharmaceutical company, and at AstraZeneca, a global biopharmaceutical company. Mr. Cola received a BA in Biology and Physics from Ursinus College and an MS in biomedical science from Drexel University. He serves on the Board of Sage Therapeutics and Phathom Pharmaceuticals, and currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Philadelphia.
Younok Dumortier Shin, PhD, MBA
Chief Technology Officer
Dr. Younok Dumortier Shin has more than 20 years of experience in Research & Development, Manufacturing, and Product Supply. Prior to joining Avalo, Dr. Shin served as Vice President and Managing Director at Dermelix Biotherapeutics, where she was accountable for developing innovative therapies to treat rare genetic disorders. Her responsibilities included early discovery, nonclinical, process development and manufacturing, and overall company strategy. Prior to Dermelix, Dr. Shin worked at GlaxoSmithKline, Bristol Myers Squibb, Johnson & Johnson, and Allergan, with increasing responsibilities including several leadership roles, and helped 2 new product launches (Darzalex®, Sylvant®), 7 commercial products manufacturing (Botox®, Remicade®, Stelara®, Simponi®, Eprex®, Reopro®, Orencia®), and more than 30 clinical products, ranging from novel biologics, gene and cell therapies, and oligonucleotides, from more than 15 manufacturing facilities worldwide. During her tenure at Bristol Myers Squibb, Dr. Shin also worked in a licensing group and completed several successful transactions. Dr. Shin completed her postdoctoral training at the National Research Institute of Canada. Dr. Shin holds a BASc in Chemical Engineering from University of British Columbia, an MS and PhD in Chemical Engineering from McGill University, and an MBA from Babson College specialized in Entrepreneurship.
Schond L. Greenway
Chief Financial Officer
Schond L. Greenway joined Avalo Therapeutics in March 2021 as Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Greenway comes to Avalo with over 20 years’ experience in corporate finance and investment analysis in the life sciences and financial services industries. Mr. Greenway has participated in and advised on transactions valued at over $30 billion during his tenure in investment banking and capital markets. As an in-house finance executive at 3 publicly traded companies, Mr. Greenway assisted with securing more than $1 billion in cumulative growth capital through a variety of equity and debt instruments in the public and private markets, as well as through funding from significant collaboration arrangements with therapeutics companies. Mr. Greenway commenced his investment banking career at Morgan Stanley, where he garnered experience in corporate finance, mergers, and acquisitions. He later served as Vice President, Healthcare Desk Analyst at Barclays Capital. Mr. Greenway joins Avalo from Mesoblast, an allogeneic cellular medicines company, where he served as Vice President, Investor Relations. At Mesoblast, Mr. Greenway led the Company’s investor relations activities and also successfully concluded several strategic corporate finance and capital markets initiatives. Prior to joining Mesoblast, Mr. Greenway served as Executive Director, Strategy and Investor Relations at Halozyme Therapeutics. He had previously held the position as Vice President, Investor Relations and Strategic Planning at DURECT Corporation, a spinout from ALZA Corporation (acquired by Johnson & Johnson). Mr. Greenway received a BS in computer information systems from Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, FL and an MBA from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA. Mr. Greenway also received an honorable discharge from the United States Air Force Reserves.
James A. Harrell, Jr.
Chief Commercial Officer
Mr. Harrell brings a great breadth of biopharmaceutical industry experience to Avalo. Jamie joined Avalo in May 2018 as the Executive Vice President of Marketing and Communications and was promoted to Chief Commercial Officer in November 2019 with the divestiture of the pediatric portfolio of products. Prior to joining Avalo, Jamie was an owner and principal with the NSCI Group, Inc., a privately held medical communications and education company where he focused on new business development and brand strategy. Mr. Harrell was Vice President and General Manager of Specialty Pharmaceuticals for Covidien, running a 350-person commercial operations group in the area of pain management from 2011 to 2013. From 2007 to late 2010 he served as Vice President of Marketing with MedImmune, Inc., responsible for their Global Pediatric Infectious Disease franchise. Mr. Harrell has held various commercial positions with Centocor, Inc. from 1999 until February 2007, with increasing levels of responsibility and management focused on the marketing of immunotherapy in autoimmune diseases and cardiovascular products. He began his career in field and hospital sales at Rhone-Poulenc Rorer in 1991. During his career he has helped to commercialize and market 3 blockbuster brands. Jamie holds a BS in Business Administration, with a double major in Marketing and Economics, from Samford University.
Lisa Hegg PhD
Vice President, Research and Development Programs and Project Management
Dr. Hegg brings over 20 years of Research and Development (R&D) and leadership experience to Avalo Therapeutics as Vice President, R&D Program & Project Management. Prior to joining the company, Dr. Hegg served as Vice President, Development and Project Management at Aclaris Therapeutics, where she led dermatology and immune-inflammation early- and mid-stage development programs. Prior to Aclaris, Dr. Hegg held the role of VP, Head of Project and Planning & Management as well as Medicine Development Leader at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) where she oversaw multidisciplinary teams through early- and late-stage drug development, market launch, and postapproval processes. Following her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Dr. Hegg began her industry career at GSK in R&D Discovery where she held significant project management and leadership roles in cardiovascular, metabolic, pulmonary, immuno-inflammatory, dermatology, and urogenital programs/products. Dr. Hegg received her BS from Muhlenberg College and her PhD from Clark University.
Vice President Global Regulatory Affairs
Ms. Matkowski served as a global regulatory professional in the biopharmaceutical industry for the last 24 years. Most recently, she joined Avalo as Vice President, Global Regulatory Affairs. Prior to joining Avalo, she was a Senior Global Regulatory Consultant for large and small pharmaceutical companies, where she focused primarily on the development of therapies for rare diseases. Ms. Matkowski was the Head of Regulatory Affairs at Aclaris Therapeutics, where she led multiple global programs throughout development. She has held various regulatory positions across multiple therapeutic areas at Takeda, BioMarin, ViroPharma, Endo Pharmaceuticals, Cephalon, and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. Ms. Matkowski began her career at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), where she served in various roles within the Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA), Philadelphia District. Ms. Matkowski received her BS in Public Health from The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, as well as an MS in Pharmaceutical Regulatory Affairs/Quality Assurance from Temple University.
Garry A. Neil, MD
Chief Scientific Officer
Prior to joining the Avalo team as Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Garry Neil served as Chief Scientific Officer of Aevi Genomic Medicine since September 2013. Prior to joining Aevi Genomic Medicine, Dr. Neil held a number of senior positions in the pharmaceutical industry, academia, and venture capital. These include Corporate VP of Science & Technology at Johnson & Johnson and Group President at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development, VP of R&D at Merck KGaA/EMD Pharmaceuticals, and VP of Clinical Research at AstraZeneca and Astra Merck. Dr. Neil holds a BS from the University of Saskatchewan and an MD from the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine. He completed his postdoctoral clinical training in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology at the University of Toronto. Dr. Neil also completed a postdoctoral research fellowship at the Research Institute of Scripps Clinic. He is the Founding Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Industry R&D Consortium, TransCelerate Biopharmaceuticals Inc. He also serves on the boards of Arena Pharmaceuticals, the Reagan Udall Foundation, and the Center for Discovery and Innovation at Hackensack Meridian Health. Dr. Neil is past Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PhRMA) Science and Regulatory Executive Committee and the PhRMA Foundation Board. He is a past member of the boards of GTx Pharmaceuticals, the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH), and the Science Management Review Board of the NIH.
Chief Accounting Officer
Mr. Sullivan brings to Avalo Therapeutics his strong public company and life science background, along with his wealth of financial knowledge, including significant experience with equity and debt capital raises, acquisitions, divestitures, in and out-license transactions, enterprise resource planning implementations, and financial planning and analysis from leading finance and accounting functions at various public biotechnology, molecular diagnostic, and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to being named the Company’s Chief Accounting Officer, Mr. Sullivan served as Interim Chief Financial Officer, Vice President of Finance, and various other escalating roles since April 2018. Prior to joining Avalo, Mr. Sullivan was the Corporate Controller for Sucampo Pharmaceuticals when it was merged with Mallinckrodt in a $1.2 billion transaction. He also served as the Corporate Controller for OpGen and prior to that was an Auditor and Senior Manager at Ernst & Young. Mr. Sullivan received his BS in Accounting and Finance from the University of Maryland, College Park where he graduated magna cum laude, and he is a Certified Public Accountant.
H. Jeffrey Wilkins, MD
Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Wilkins brings over 19 years of clinical research experience to Avalo Therapeutics, most recently serving as Chief Medical Officer of Zyla Life Sciences. Previously, he held the position of Chief Medical Officer at Onspira Therapeutics, Lycera, and Ceptaris Therapeutics, Inc., where he led clinical programs from IND phase 1 trials to regulatory approval (including Valchlor®). Prior to this, Dr. Wilkins was Vice President, Worldwide Clinical Research, Inflammation/Oncology at Cephalon Inc., where he led clinical development, medical affairs, and business development efforts in both therapeutic areas. Previously, he was Senior Vice President of Clinical Development with Ception Therapeutics, where he headed a successful program in eosinophilic asthma prior to the company’s acquisition by Cephalon. Dr. Wilkins entered the pharmaceutical industry with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), where he rose to become Vice President of Discovery Medicine for GSK’s Center of Excellence in External Drug Discovery. He also served as Group Director of GSK’s urology franchise, responsible for Levitra® and the launch of VESIcare®. Earlier in his career as a practicing primary care physician, Dr. Wilkins was Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of TriValley Primary Care, a large multicenter primary care group in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Dr. Wilkins received his BS from Bucknell University and his MD from Temple University School of Medicine.