- As Executive Director, Bob Smith will oversee Foundation activities related to the gene therapy, cancer immunotherapy, neurodegenerative diseases, veterinary medicine, and FUS Partners programs.
- Mr. Smith was formerly senior vice president of the Global Gene Therapy Business at Pfizer, Inc.
Bob Smith has joined the Foundation in the role of Executive Director. He will be involved with a range of the Foundation’s key activities, including the gene therapy, cancer immunotherapy, neurodegenerative diseases, veterinary medicine, and FUS Partners programs.
Mr. Smith has more than 35 years of experience in a variety of alliance management, business development, commercial, corporate, mergers and acquisitions, and research and development roles. He was most recently senior vice president of the Global Gene Therapy Business at Pfizer, Inc. In this role, he led the company’s gene therapy and rare disease pipeline portfolio from a strategic development and operational implementation perspective as well as Pfizer’s end-to-end efforts to be an industry leader in gene therapy. Mr. Smith was also responsible for leading the gene therapy and rare disease early commercial development activities in partnership with the rare disease research unit at Pfizer.
He transitioned from Wyeth, where he led and managed the global mergers and acquisitions group, when Pfizer acquired Wyeth in 2009. During his career, he held a number of senior roles at Pfizer, including leading the worldwide business development activities for the company’s research and development organization, and its animal health, Capsugel, consumer healthcare, and nutrition business units.
“Bob brings to the Foundation a wealth of experience and contacts in both pharma and biotech development as well as business and commercialization,” said Foundation Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD. “He will be a perfect complement and force multiplier to the team.”
Mr. Smith serves or has served as a member of the board of directors of AM Pharma B.V.; Bamboo Therapeutics Inc.; Ignite Immunotherapeutics, Inc.; Iterum Therapeutics Limited; Life Sciences PA – the Pennsylvania Biotechnology Association; Bio NJ – the New Jersey State Biotechnology Association; the Duke Margolis Value Based Agreements Advisory Board; the Alliance for Regenerative Medicine (ARM); and the Foundation for Cell and Gene Medicine (FCGM). He is also a member of the executive committees of the ARM and FCGM boards, and he was recently elected to be the vice chair of the ARM Board. Bob is also a member of the Business Advisory Board of Ocugen, Inc.; the Investment Advisory Committee of Venture Investors, LLC, (Madison, Wisconsin); and the Foundation’s Gene Therapy Scientific Advisory Board.
After receiving a BS in neuroscience from the University of Rochester, he went onto earn an MBA in finance and corporate accounting from the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Rochester.
Mr. Smith presented a keynote address at the Foundation’s 2022 International Symposium on Focused Ultrasound on how focused ultrasound may integrate with and impact the field of gene therapy.
“I truly believe in the power and promise of focused ultrasound to profoundly improve the health and quality of life of millions of people around the world,” said Mr. Smith. “I’m excited to be joining the Foundation’s impressive and innovative team that is advancing this transformative technology.”