: Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Seth Lederman, MD

Seth Lederman is a physician, scientist and founder and executive officer of innovative biopharmaceuticals companies. Prior to founding Tonix, among the companies Dr. Lederman founded was Targent Pharmaceuticals, which developed late-stage oncology drugs, including pure-isomer levofolinic acid (levoleucovorin). Targent’s assets were sold to Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, which marketed levoleucovorin as Fusilev® for advanced colorectal cancer, where it gained significant market acceptance.  

Dr. Lederman served as an Associate Professor at Columbia University from 1996 until April 13, 2017. He joined the faculty of Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1985, became Assistant Professor of Medicine in 1988, and Associate Professor with tenure in 1996 and Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology in 1997. From 1988 to 2002, Dr. Lederman directed basic science research at Columbia in molecular immunology, infectious diseases and the development of therapeutics for autoimmune diseases. Dr. Lederman is author of numerous scientific articles, and inventor of technologies recognized by a number of issued patents. His fundamental work on the CD40-Ligand (CD154) elucidated the molecular basis of T cell helper function and has led to the development of therapeutic candidates for autoimmune diseases and organ transplant rejection in collaboration with Biogen and UCB. The successful defense of his CD154 patents has led to important precedents in defining the relationship of therapeutics and molecular targets. In collaboration with Prof. David Baltimore (then at Rockefeller University and later MIT), Dr. Lederman identified and functionally characterized the CD40 signaling molecule, TRAF-3. His early work on HIV contributed to the understanding of how the V3 loop of HIV gp120 was involved in fusion with CD4 cell membranes, an early and essential event in viral entry and infection. In addition to his research, Dr. Lederman served as attending physician in the Edward Daniels Arthritis and Autoimmunity Clinic on the Medical Service at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital from 1988-1996.  

Dr. Lederman represented U.S. Biotechnology at a Beijing Summit in September 2015 with China’s President Xi Jinping. The Summit was organized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and involved a delegation of U.S. CEOs, former U.S. Cabinet officials and leading academic experts. 

Dr. Lederman earned an AB from Princeton in Chemistry cum laude in 1979 and an MD from Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1983. Dr. Lederman trained in internal medicine and rheumatology at Columbia's Presbyterian Hospital. He was an NIH Physician-Scientist 1985-1990 at Columbia.

Margaret Smith Bell was a Vice President at Standard Life Investments where she was a portfolio manager and health care equity analyst. Previously, Ms. Bell was a Managing Director at Putnam Investments, and served as a senior health care analyst and a portfolio manager of the Putnam Health Sciences Trust. Ms. Bell's healthcare experience also includes equity research positions with State Street Research and Alex. Brown & Sons, Inc. Ms. Bell is a past member of the Board of Overseers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Ms. Bell holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Mr. Grace is the President & Chief Executive Officer of Grace Institute Foundation, which provides financial support to women’s workforce development programs in New York City. He is also a co-founder and Chief Philanthropy & Chief Social Impact Officer for (qp) global family offices LLC, which creates and manages the single family offices of an exclusive group of families from around the world. Mr. Grace is an experienced senior executive with expertise in strategic planning, general management, finance, operations, supply chain management and philanthropy. He has substantial experience with both overseas and domestic companies, ranging in size from Fortune 50 companies to start-ups. Since 1996, Mr. Grace has been President of both MLP Capital, Inc., a private investment firm, and GMS Timber Co, a forestry management company. During this same period, he has also been a fiduciary for overseen a number of non-profit entities. In this latter connection, Mr. Grace is responsible for governance, investment management, asset allocation, and the finance, accounting, tax and legal functions. Previously, Mr. Grace served as President and CEO of Kingdom Group, LLC, a provider of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fueling stations for alternative fuel vehicles, and COO and CFO of C3 Communications, Inc. an in-store marketing/promotion company. Over the period 1977-1995, Mr. Grace served in a variety of roles at W.R. Grace & Co. including as the head of Grace Logistics, Inc., a $35 million operating company with oversight responsibility for Grace's $5.0 billion in annual global supply chain activities (President, 1991-1995); Kascho GmbH, a $140 million chocolate manufacturer (Managing Director & Chief Financial Officer, 1988-1991); Grace Cocoa, a $700 million global cocoa products manufacturer (Project Manager, 1986-1988); the Financial Planning & Analysis Division of W. R. Grace & Co. (Group Manager, 1982-1986); Chemed Corporation, a $350 million specialty chemicals manufacturer and health care provider (Assistant to the President, 1980-1982); Omnicare, Inc., a $70 million provider of hospital pharmacy services (Project Manager, 1979-1980). Mr. Grace is a Director of Chemed Corporation (NYSE: CHE), and is chair of both the chairing on both Audit and Nominating Committees. Mr. Grace was previously Chairman of the Board of Grace Institute and Chairman of the Board of KickStart International. He continues to serve as a board member or officer for a number of other non-profit entities.

Mr. Grace was a Liberal Arts major at the University of Notre Dame and holds an M.B.A. degree in Finance from Columbia University's Graduate School of Business.

General Grange is currently Chief Executive Officer of Pharm-Olam International, Ltd. Prior to joining Pharm-Olam, he was President of Osprey Global Solutions, LLC “OGS”, a Service Disabled Veterans Organization. Gen. Grange served as the Chief Executive Officer of Pharmaceutical Product Development, Inc. “PPDI”, where he oversaw clinical and laboratory operations. Prior to PPDI he served in the McCormick Tribune Foundation for 10 years, most recently as Chief Executive Officer and President, where he also oversaw the support of Veteran Programs. Gen. Grange served 30 years in the U.S. Army as a Ranger, Green Beret, Aviator, Infantryman and a member of special operating units. At the Pentagon, he was Director of Army Current Operations, Readiness, and Mobilization. Gen. Grange commanded the Ranger Regiment and the First Infantry Division (the Big Red One). He holds a master’s degree in Public Service from Western Kentucky University.

Dr. Landry is the Samuel Bard Professor and Chair of the Department of Medicine (tenured) at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons. Dr. Landry also serves as Director of the Division of Experimental Therapeutics. Dr. Landry was a co-founder (with Dr. Lederman, above)of Vela Pharmaceuticals, which developed several drugs for central nervous system disorders, including very low dose (VLD)-cyclobenzaprine for fibromyalgia syndrome. At Columbia, Dr. Landry developed the first artificial enzyme to degrade cocaine and his report in Science was voted one of top 25 papers in the world for 1993 by the American Chemical Society. His discovery that vasopressin can be used to treat shock fundamentally changed intensive care medicine after an international randomized prospective trial supported his published findings and demonstrated a reduction of mortality in moderately severe septic shock. Dr. Landry is a leader in the development and ethics of embryonic stem cell research and served as a member of the President's Council on Bioethics during the George W. Bush administration. In 1991, he established his laboratory at Columbia University to investigate medical applications of artificial enzymes and in 1998 founded the Division of Experimental Therapeutics. The Division focuses on novel therapeutics for intractable problems such as cocaine addiction, nerve gas intoxication and vasodilatory shock.

Dr. Landry graduated from Lafayette College, completed his Ph.D. in organic chemistry under Nobel laureate R.B. Woodward at Harvard University in 1979 and then obtained his M.D. degree from Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1983. After residency in Internal Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital, he returned to Columbia University as an NIH Physician-Scientist, 1985-1990.

Mr. Mather served as a Managing Director at Janney Capital Markets from 2009 to 2015. He was most recently Co-Head of the Equity Capital Markets Group where he was responsible for public offerings, private placements, PIPES, registered directs and other financings. Previously, Mr. Mather served as Managing Director at Jefferies and, as Head of the Structured Equity Group, was responsible for the origination and execution of private placements for private companies, registered direct and PIPE offerings for public companies and special purpose acquisition companies. Prior to Jefferies, he was at Cowen and Company for ten years where he was a Managing Director and led the Private Equity Group. Before Cowen, Mr. Mather held senior investment banking and investment positions at Smith Barney Inc. and Prudential Investment Corporation. Mr. Mather has completed advisory and capital raising assignments for more than 100 companies.

Mr. Mather received an AB in History from Brown University and an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).

Dr. Olukotun is the Chief Executive Officer of CR Strategies, LLC, which consults on clinical trial design and FDA strategy for pharmaceutical product development. He is the former Chief Executive Officer of EpiGen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and the former Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of CardioVax, Inc. He is also co-founder of VIA Pharmaceuticals and served as the company's Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Olukotun has 30 years of experience in clinical research and drug development in the pharmaceutical industry. Before CardioVax and VIA, he was Chief Medical Officer of Esperion Therapeutics, Inc., a cardiovascular drug development company, until its acquisition by Pfizer in 2004. From 1996 to 2000, Dr. Olukotun was Vice President of Medical and Regulatory Affairs and Chief Medical Officer of Mallinckrodt Inc. Prior to joining Mallinckrodt, Dr. Olukotun spent 14 years at Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, including time at Squibb prior to the merger with Bristol Myers in 1989. At Squibb, Dr. Olukotun was part of the team that won FDA approval for two revolutionary drugs: Capoten® (captopril) and Pravachol® (pravastatin). Capoten was the first rationally designed drug and the first angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor to win FDA approval. Pravachol was the second statin to win U.S. FDA approval. Both became blockbusters and are still widely prescribed today as generics. The inventor of pravastatin, Professor Akira Endo won the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award and the inventors of captopril, David Cushman and Miguel Ondetti won Albert Lasker Clinical Medical Research Award. Dr. Olukotun received his medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine and obtained a Master of Public Health degree from Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Olukotun is a Board-Certified cardiologist and a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology as well as the American Heart Association.

Mr. Rhodes is the President and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), a public benefit corporation which offers information and analysis, technical expertise and funding to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. Mr. Rhodes works with public and private partners to expand investment and innovation in energy to drive New York's clean energy economy and stimulate economic activity. Mr. Rhodes is a former partner at Booz Allen Hamilton (1987-2002) where he led significant work in strategy and commercial operations globally for clients in biotech and pharmaceuticals. He had a particular focus on business optimization, including clinical development strategies for new and existing molecules, market repositioning and commercial operations for established drugs, and business development strategies to enhance drug portfolios and pipelines. Recently Mr. Rhodes served as Senior Advisor to Good Energies (2007-2010), a private investment firm focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency, where he developed strategy, supported portfolio companies and served on the management team. Mr. Rhodes serves on the board of several non-profit organizations, including the Hospital for Joint Diseases, New York, and the American Federation for Aging Research, New York. Mr. Rhodes is a graduate of Princeton University (1979) and the Yale School of Management (1987).