Ms. Lowry joins Metacrine from Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. where she served as head of global HR operations & total rewards. Prior to Arena, she was head of global HR operations & total rewards at ACADIA Pharmaceuticals, and before that, head of global rewards & HR operations at Ultragenyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. From 2014 to 2017 she took a sabbatical to train full-time to qualify for the Olympic trials in the marathon and obtain her M.S. in business and corporate law from the University of San Diego School of Law. Prior to that, Ms. Lowry was senior director, global total rewards & HR operations at ResMed Inc., and before that, director, human resources, global total rewards, talent acquisition & HRIS at Encore Capital Group, Inc. She began her career in HR as a consultant with Arthur Andersen and Ernst & Young. Ms. Lowry received her B.A. in Spanish language and literature from the University of Virginia.
Mr. Bischoff is our Vice President of Development and Operations. He has a strong multidisciplinary background in metabolic disease and oncology targets with over 25 years of experience in the biotech/pharmaceutical industry. Prior to joining Metacrine, Mr. Bischoff served as senior director of operations and contracts at Seragon Pharmaceuticals. At Seragon he was involved in business development efforts resulting in the acquisition of Seragon by Genentech. Prior to Seragon, Mr. Bischoff served as director of operations at Aragon Pharmaceuticals and as a pharmacologist at X-Ceptor Therapeutics, Ligand Pharmaceuticals and Hybritech, Inc. He received his B.S. in biology from the University of California, San Diego.
Dr. Smith is our Senior Vice President of Chemistry with more than 20 years of drug discovery experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Most recently at Seragon Pharmaceuticals and Aragon Pharmaceuticals, he was Vice President of Chemistry where he oversaw medicinal chemistry projects, including the development of two estrogen receptor degrader clinical candidates, and a next-generation androgen receptor antagonist program. In addition, Dr. Smith was responsible for the Aragon and then Seragon intellectual property portfolios and aspects of clinical manufacturing. Prior to Aragon, he was Head of Chemistry at Kalypsys Pharmaceuticals. Prior to Kalypsys, Dr. Smith was a Research Fellow at Merck & Co., where he led chemistry groups that contributed to clinical candidates in the areas of obesity and inflammation. Dr. Smith was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Toronto and has a Ph.D. in synthetic organic chemistry from the University of Southampton, UK.
Ms. Lee joins Metacrine from Omnione, Inc. where she served as senior vice president, general counsel. Prior to Omnione, she was most recently senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of Senomyx, Inc. until its acquisition by Firmenich S.A. Before joining the biotechnology industry, Ms. Lee advised Outdoor Channel Holdings, Inc. for five years, serving most recently as its executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary. Prior to that, Ms. Lee held legal positions of increasing responsibility with Sempra Energy, Inc. over seven years, where she last served as corporate secretary and counsel. She began her career as an associate at Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison, LLP and Morrison & Foerster, LLP. Ms. Lee received her B.A. in international relations and economics from American University, and her J.D. from the University of Illinois, College of Law.
Ms. Millican has served as our Chief Financial Officer since March 2015. From August 2013 to February 2015, Ms. Millican served as the Senior Vice President of Finance at Seragon, a private biotechnology company focused on developing Selective Estrogen Receptor Degraders (SERDs) targeting hormone dependent cancers, which was acquired by Genentech in August 2014. From July 2012 to August 2013, she served as Vice President of Finance at Aragon, a discovery-stage small molecule company focused on therapeutics for the treatment of hormone- resistant cancers, which was acquired by Johnson and Johnson in August 2013. From September 2009 to July 2012, Ms. Millican served in various senior financial management roles at Zogenix, Inc., a pharmaceutical company developing and commercializing innovative central nervous system therapies for people living with serious and life- threatening rare central nervous system disorders and medical conditions. Ms. Millican spent five years with the public accounting firm Deloitte & Touche LLP. She holds a B.S. in Accountancy from the University of San Diego and is a certified public accountant in the state of California.
Dr. Chen has served as our Chief Medical Officer since August 2018. Previously, he served as Chief Medical & Scientific Officer of Pfenex Inc., a clinical-stage development and licensing biotechnology company, from May 2017 to August 2018, and as the Chief Medical Officer of Pfenex from November 2014 until May 2017. From 2012 to 2014, Dr. Chen served as Vice President, Clinical Development of Aileron Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing and advancing drugs using novel peptide-stabilizing technologies. From 2009 to 2012, he served as Vice President, Translational Medicine of Regulus Therapeutics Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of microRNA therapeutics. From 2006 to 2009, Dr. Chen served as Director, Clinical Research and Senior Director, Clinical Research and Corporate Development of Amylin Pharmaceuticals Inc., a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery, development and commercialization of drug candidates for the treatment of diabetes, obesity and other diseases. From 2004 to 2006, he served as Associate Director, Medical Sciences of Amgen, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing, and manufacturing of innovative human therapeutics. Additionally, from 2002 to 2012, Dr. Chen served as Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine and Clinical Instructor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. From 2001 to 2004, he served as a Staff Research Investigator, Staff Scientist, and Research Scientist at the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease. Dr. Chen received his medical residency training at Massachusetts General Hospital from 1995 to 1998, his M.D. from Columbia University in 1995 and his B.A.S. in political science and biological sciences from Stanford University in 1991.
Dr. Klassen has served as our President and Chief Executive Officer and as a member of our board of directors since June 2020. From March 2017 to June 2020, Dr. Klassen served as Executive Vice President, Head of Research and Development and Chief Medical Officer of Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. From June 2016 to March 2017, he was Chief Medical Officer of Laboratoris Sanifit S.L., a biotechnology company, and prior to that, from November 2009 to May 2016, was Executive Vice President, Head of Global Development at Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. Dr. Klassen also held several positions of increasing responsibility at Amgen Inc., including Therapeutic Area Head for Nephrology. Before joining Amgen, he was a faculty member in the Division of Nephrology at Duke University Medical Center. Dr. Klassen holds a B.S. in Chemistry from Central University of Iowa. Dr. Klassen received his medical degree from the University of Nebraska College of Medicine and completed his residency in internal medicine, fellowship in nephrology, and Master of Health Sciences degree at Duke University.