Board of Directors
Douglas M. Fambrough, III, Ph.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Douglas Fambrough co-founded Dicerna in 2007 and has served as the Company’s president and chief executive officer since 2010. His background as both a genomic scientist and venture capitalist have been instrumental in the evolution of the Company, from the development of its unique GalXC™ platform to its transformation into a successful, publicly traded company.
Prior to Dicerna, Dr. Fambrough specialized in financing innovative life science technology companies as a general partner with Oxford Bioscience Partners, a Boston-based venture capital firm.
In 2003, Dr. Fambrough and two other investors created Sirna Therapeutics, a first-generation RNA interference (RNAi) pioneer; he served on Sirna’s board of directors until Merck acquired the company in 2006. On Oxford’s behalf, Dr. Fambrough invested in several ventures, including: Solexa, developer of the dominant ultra-high-throughput DNA sequencing platform, which Illumina acquired, and Xencor, a leader in engineering antibodies to improve their therapeutic properties (Nasdaq: XNCR).
Before joining Oxford Bioscience Partners, Dr. Fambrough spent 10 years as a genomic scientist, most recently at the Whitehead/MIT Center for Genome Research, now known as the Broad Institute. Dr. Fambrough also serves as a member of the board of directors of TScan Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of T cell receptor (TCR) therapies that reprogram a patient’s own T cells to recognize shared cancer targets. He graduated from Cornell University and obtained his Ph.D. in genetics at the University of California, Berkeley.
J. Kevin Buchi
Kevin Buchi, the chief executive officer of Biospecifics Technologies Corp and the former president and chief executive officer of Cephalon, Inc. and TetraLogic Pharmaceuticals, joined the Dicerna board of directors in August 2018, and was appointed chairman of the board in January 2019. He previously served as corporate vice president of global branded products at Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Limited from 2011 to May 2012, after Teva acquired Cephalon in October 2011.
Mr. Buchi joined Cephalon in 1991 and, during his tenure, held various leadership positions, including chief financial officer and chief operating officer, before becoming Cephalon’s chief executive officer in December 2010. In addition, Mr. Buchi currently serves as a director of Amneal Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Benitec Biopharma Ltd. Mr. Buchi has previously served on the boards of several pharmaceutical companies, including EPIRUS Biopharmaceuticals, Inc., Alexza Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Forward Pharma A/S.
Stephen Doberstein, Ph.D.
Stephen Doberstein, Ph.D., joined the Dicerna board of directors in February 2020 and currently serves as the Chief Scientific Fellow at Nektar Therapeutics, Inc. Prior to this, Dr. Doberstein was Nektar’s Senior Vice President of R&D and Chief Research and Development Officer, and he served for nearly eight years as Nektar’s Senior Vice President of Research and Chief Scientific Officer. During his tenure with the company, Dr. Doberstein has been responsible for all R&D efforts, supervising more than 300 scientists, physicians and support personnel.
Before joining Nektar, Dr. Doberstein was Vice President of Research at XOMA (US), LLC, Five Prime Therapeutics, Inc. and Xencor, Inc. He began his career in the pharmaceutical industry at Exelixis, Inc. as a Program Leader, rapidly advancing to roles of increasing responsibility in target research and discovery. Early in his career, Dr. Doberstein served as a Senior Engineer at E.I. duPont de Nemours & Co., Inc.Dr. Doberstein received his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware and his doctorate in biochemistry, cell and molecular biology from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Doberstein was awarded the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Doctoral Fellowship and the Muscular Dystrophy Association Postdoctoral and Senior Postdoctoral Fellowships, and he has co-authored 30 research publications and review articles.
Martin Freed, M.D.
Martin Freed, M.D., has been a member of the Dicerna board of directors since 2016. Dr. Freed has served as an independent consultant to several private pharmaceutical, biotechnology and healthcare companies, specializing in clinical and general pharmaceutical development and clinical and regulatory strategy since February 2015.
Dr. Freed co-founded and served as chief medical officer of Civitas Therapeutics, Inc., from December 2010 to October 2014 (acquired by Acorda Therapeutics, Inc.) and as senior vice president, clinical development of Acorda from October 2014 through January 2015.
In addition, Dr. Freed has served as chief medical officer and has provided strategic and operational planning and execution, as well as medical leadership for clinical pharmacology, development strategy and preclinical development, for multiple pharmaceutical companies including Avila Therapeutics, Inc., Taligen Therapeutics, Adnexus Therapeutics, Inc. (acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb), and Vitae Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Dr. Freed spent nearly 14 years at GlaxoSmithKline and its predecessor, SmithKline Beecham Pharmaceuticals, where he served in numerous roles including vice president, clinical development and medical affairs in the metabolism therapeutic area. He has authored over 100 publications or presentations.
Dr. Freed has been Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Nephrology and Clinical Pharmacology. He performed his internal medicine residency at Temple University Hospital and his nephrology fellowship at Yale-New Haven Hospital. A Fellow of the American College of Physicians, Dr. Freed received his B.S. with Distinction in biology from the University of Delaware and his M.D. from Pennsylvania State University’s College of Medicine.
Patrick Gray joined the Dicerna board of directors in September of 2019. He currently serves as a member of the board and as chairperson of the audit committee of Tmunity Therapeutics, Inc. Mr. Gray previously served as a member of the board and as the chairperson of the audit committee of Civitas Solutions, Inc., from September 2014 to March 2019, Sancilio Pharmaceuticals Company, Inc., from February 2012 through August 2018, and Datto, Inc., from May 2015 through December 2017.
Mr. Gray spent 37 years with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (“PwC”) until his retirement in 2009. He is a certified public accountant who spent 25 years as an Audit Partner at PwC. At the time of his retirement, Mr. Gray served as the lead partner for the PwC U.S. firm’s Corporate Governance Group. Prior to that time, he held held various other leadership positions within the firm, including leadership of the PwC U.S. High Technology Group.
Mr. Gray holds a B.S. in Economics from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.
Stephen J. Hoffman, M.D., Ph.D.
Stephen Hoffman, M.D., Ph.D., is an independent director and has served as a member of the Dicerna board of directors since November 2007. Most recently, he served as the chief executive officer of Aerpio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from 2017 to 2019. Dr. Hoffman has been a senior advisor to PDL BioPharma, Inc. since February 2014. Prior to that, he served as a managing director at Skyline Ventures, a venture capital firm, from May 2007 until February 2014.
From January 2003 to March 2007, Dr. Hoffman was a general partner at TVM Capital, a venture capital firm. From 1994 to 2002, he served as president, chief executive officer and a member of the board of directors of Allos Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, where he remained as chairman of the board until it was acquired by Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in September 2012. From 1990 to 1994, Dr. Hoffman completed a fellowship in clinical oncology and a residency/fellowship in dermatology, both at the University of Colorado. Dr. Hoffman was the scientific founder of Somatogen Inc., a biotechnology company that in 1998 was acquired by Baxter International, Inc., where he held the position of vice president of science and technology from 1987 until 1990.
Dr. Hoffman currently serves on the boards of directors of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Palleon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Previously, he also served on the boards of directors of Genocea Biosciences, Inc., and Sirtris Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a pharmaceutical company that was acquired by GlaxoSmithKline in 2008.
Dr. Hoffman holds a Ph.D. in bio-organic chemistry from Northwestern University and an M.D. from the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
Adam M. Koppel M.D., Ph.D.
Managing Director, Bain Capital
Adam M. Koppel, M.D., Ph.D., managing director of the Bain Capital Life Sciences Fund, has been a member of the Dicerna board of directors since April 2017. He first joined Bain Capital Public Equity in 2003 and was a leader within the firm’s healthcare sector until mid-2014; Dr. Koppel rejoined Bain Capital in 2016.
From mid-2014 to mid-2016, Dr. Koppel was executive vice president of corporate development and chief strategy officer at Biogen. Prior to initially joining Bain Capital, Dr. Koppel was an associate principal at McKinsey & Co. in New Jersey, where he served a variety of healthcare companies. In addition to Dicerna, he serves on the boards of directors of Solid Biosciences, PTC Therapeutics and Trevena.
Dr. Koppel received an M.D. and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He also received an M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Palmer Scholar. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University with an A.B. and A.M. in history and science.
Marc Kozin has served on more than a dozen boards in a variety of roles and on all committees. Previously, Mr. Kozin was a career strategy consultant, having served as president of L.E.K. Consulting’s North American practice from 1997 to 2012.
Mr. Kozin began his career at L.E.K. in 1987 by helping to establish the firm’s Boston office. He has over 30 years of experience in corporate and business unit strategy consulting, merger and acquisition advisory services, and value management both domestically and internationally. He also led the development of L.E.K.’s industry-leading life science strategic planning practice.
Mr. Kozin is lead director of UFP Technologies, where he has served as a director since 2006. In January 2013, he joined the strategy advisory board of HealthCare Royalty Partners, where he is vice chairman. On the non-profit side, he serves on the board of The Greenlight Fund.
Since 2012, Mr. Kozin has served on the boards of Endocyte, a small molecule-targeted therapeutic company since sold to Novartis; Dyax, an integrated biotechnology company since sold to Shire; OvaScience, a fertility company since merged with Millendo Therapeutics; and Flex Pharmaceuticals.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Mersana Therapeutics
Anna Protopapas is president and chief executive officer of Mersana Therapeutics, a clinical-stage antibody drug conjugate company, which she joined in March 2015. Prior to Mersana, Ms. Protopapas was president of Millennium Pharmaceuticals, where she led Takeda Pharmaceutical Co.’s $1.3 billion oncology business.
Ms. Protopapas also served as the executive vice president of global business development for Takeda Pharmaceuticals, where she oversaw global acquisitions, partnering, licensing and venture investing. In this role, she led Takeda’s $12 billion acquisition of Nycomed, a critical step in the company’s globalization. Ms. Protopapas was a member of Takeda’s executive committee and was elected a corporate officer in 2011. Earlier, Ms. Protopapas was an executive officer at Millennium Pharmaceuticals and served in various senior leadership positions, playing an integral role in the company’s transformation from a genomics start-up to a fully integrated oncology leader.
Ms. Protopapas served on the board of directors of Ariad Pharmaceuticals from May 2015 to February 2017, when it was sold to Takeda for $5.2 billion. She also served on the board of Bioverativ from January 2017 to January 2018, when it was sold to Sanofi for $11.6 billion. She earned her bachelor’s degree in science and engineering from Princeton University; a master’s degree in chemical engineering practice from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; and an M.B.A. from Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Cynthia Smith has more than 20 years of broad leadership experience within the healthcare industry. Most recently she has served as chief commercial officer and a member of the executive team of ZS Pharma (acquired by AstraZeneca), where she led efforts to transition the company from the development stage to a commercial enterprise.
Prior to joining ZS Pharma, Ms. Smith served as vice president, market access and commercial development at Affymax, Inc. Earlier, she held various senior leadership positions in market access, corporate strategy, government relations and external affairs at Merck & Co. Before beginning her career in the biopharmaceutical industry, Ms. Smith served as a healthcare policy analyst in the White House Office of Management and Budget. She previously served on the board of Nivalis Therapeutics.