As vice president of Corporate Development at Neuron23, David realizes he has to be able to do a lot more than simply focus on business development at this stage of the company. “You can’t silo yourself with specific responsibilities,” he explains. “For now, I do a lot of things…except experiments, so that our scientists can focus on designing and implementing great experiments.”
Not that David isn’t familiar with the experiments behind great medicines, having earned his PhD in Molecular Biology and Neuroscience and a Bachelors’ degree in Biochemistry. It’s just that he prefers working on the later half of the drug development and commercialization lifecycle, where he can ensure innovative drugs touch as many patients as possible and have a transformative impact on their life.
David has an uncanny ability to align both the commercial and R&D functions around a common strategy, understanding how a drug works at a granular level and looking at how that can be applied to treating other diseases with similar mechanisms of disease. As one of his colleagues describes him, “David can go from 30,000 feet to ground zero instantly.”
In his previous role at AstraZeneca, David was focused on developing complex brand strategies and commercial launch plans for AstraZeneca/Eli Lilly’s phase 3 Alzheimer’s drug, lanabecestat, and led the development of an ambitious lifecycle management plan for benralizumab, a treatment for eosinophilic asthma.
Described as dependable and trustworthy, if you ask David to do something, you can count on him to do it in quality way. David can be detail-oriented and is willing to go into the nitty-gritty details while always focused on the broader strategy. “I always like to think of the big picture…to bring people back down to the ground,” he explains.
In the earlier part of his career as a consultant, David was often brought in to tackle difficult problems and find solutions. He likes to have a big impact and is flexible in his work style, although he expects his colleagues to be highly capable and not get sidetracked by internal politics. “Transparency is key,” he says.
Most importantly, David likes to work with kind people. “You can be an exceptional genius and still be a kind person…and as an organization, that’s what we all agree on.”