May 20, 2020 – Over the past few months, numerous healthcare organizations have turned to executive search firms to find new chief medical officers. And in the era of COVID-19 we can expect this to be another burgeoning area for executive search firms.
Recently, life sciences-focused executive search firm Coulter Partners has placed Rudolf Baumgartner as chief medical officer and head of clinical development at Denmark-based Saniona, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on rare diseases.
“Rudi’s clinical development expertise will be critical as Saniona advances its mid/late stage development of Tesomet in two rare eating disorders: Prader-Willi syndrome and hypothalamic obesity,” said Rami Levin, president and CEO of Saniona. “As we pursue our end of phase 2 meeting with the FDA and determine the regulatory path for bringing Tesomet to patients in these indications, we look forward to Rudi’s insights and expertise to build out the clinical development team and progress our programs through to commercialization. Thank you, to the team at Coulter Partners, for their outstanding professional support in achieving this appointment,” he said.
Dr. Baumgartner brings more than 20 years of experience leading multiple pharmaceutical development programs from discovery through approval and launch, in both large and small pharmaceutical companies. He is a physician-scientist with a proven track record of leading cross-functional teams through multiple development programs from investigational new drug (IND) applications through new drug application (NDA) submissions and product approvals. Trained in basic immunology, Dr. Baumgartner brings to Saniona significant expertise across a broad array of therapeutic areas, including inflammation and auto-immune diseases.
Most recently, Dr. Baumgartner served as chief medical officer for the Flatley Discovery lab, a non-profit foundation working in the rare disease space of Cystic Fibrosis. Prior to that, he was the EVP and chief medical officer for Inotek Pharmaceuticals, where he was instrumental in writing the S1 and co-leading the company’s IPO. At Inotek Pharmaceuticals, he oversaw clinical development and operations, medical affairs, regulatory affairs, biostatistics, preclinical development and intellectual property. Before that, Dr. Baumgartner held senior-level development positions at Sepracor and Merck & Co. He began his medical career as a clinician-scientist at the National Institutes of Health, in the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
“This is an exciting time to join the Saniona team, as the company builds on its strong scientific roots to become a U.S.-based biopharmaceutical company preparing for late-stage trials of Tesomet in two rare diseases,” said Dr. Baumgartner. “The two diseases for which we are evaluating Tesomet, hypothalamic obesity and Prader-Willi Syndrome, both lack approved treatment options and represent significant unmet needs for patients and their families.”
Saniona is a rare disease biopharmaceutical company focused on research, development and commercialization of treatments for the central nervous system. The company has four programs in clinical development. Saniona intends to develop and commercialize treatments for rare disease indications such as Prader-Willi syndrome and hypothalamic obesity on its own.
Life Sciences Specialists
Coulter Partners is a board and senior level global executive search specialist focused exclusively on life sciences. The firm works closely with those at the cutting edge of innovation in the industry to understand their challenges. With an extensive global network and expertise gained over 25 years in the sector, Coulter Partners have become trusted advisers on leadership in the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical technology, diagnostics, health tech, CRO and services sectors. The firm also works closely with the global investor community, hiring for their own teams as well as building the boards and executive leadership teams of their portfolio companies. The team of 95 completes over 260 assignments a year working from 14 offices across the U.K., EMEA, the U.S., and APAC.
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With the integration of technology into all facets of everyday life, the life sciences and healthcare industry is hardly alone in facing technology-related issues. These take on increased importance when they impact health, disease diagnosis, treatment and, ultimately, human longevity. Having the right leaders in place to sort through these complex challenges, say recruiters serving the sector, is critical — especially those with vision and transformational skills.
Bianca Coulter founded Coulter Partners in 2003 and has 25 years’ experience of board and C-level global search, building the leadership teams of early stage, mid cap and global multinationals in over 20 countries. Through appointing the best leadership, Ms. Coulter channels her judgement and considerable expertise to impact patient benefit and assist those at the cutting edge of life science to achieve their goals.
“I believe that we can impact patient benefit and genuinely assist those at the cutting edge of life science to achieve their goals,” said Ms. Coulter. “Helping to appoint the best leadership in this sector is an absolute privilege. I could not have enjoyed any other career as much as working within this industry, and our team is carefully selected to share this passion.”
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media