Ray Elliott plans to retire from his position as president and CEO of orthopedics manufacturer Zimmer Holdings Inc. (Warsaw, IN), the company announced in November. Elliott, who has served in his current positions since the company's inception as a public company in 2001, will remain as chairman for at least one year. "My decision provides the opportunity to serve, in the future, on other corporate boards, and to advise both private equity firms and investment banks on medical devicerelated strategy and transactions," Elliott said. Zimmer has hired an executive recruiting firm to assist with the search for a successor that will include both internal and external candidates.
In November, Robert P. Cummins, president and CEO of Cyberonics Inc. (Houston), and Pamela B. Westbrook, the company's CFO, resigned their positions over accounting errors uncovered during an ongoing investigation into past stock option practices. The company named cofounder and former chief executive Reese S. Terry Jr. as interim CEO. George E. Parker III, head of human resources, was named interim chief operating officer, and John A. Riccardi, director of financial planning and analysis, became interim CFO. Board member Tony Coelho was appointed nonexecutive chairman.
NuVasive Inc. (San Diego) recently announced several senior management promotions. Keith Valentine has been promoted to president and COO of the company. He joined NuVasive in 2001 and has served as president since December 2004. Patrick Miles has been promoted to executive vice president of marketing and development. He joined NuVasive in 2001 and has served as senior vice president of marketing since December 2004. In addition, Jason Hannon has been promoted from vice president of legal affairs to senior vice president and general counsel, and G. Bryan Cornwall, PhD, has been promoted from vice president of research and development to vice president of research and clinical resources.
Valeritas LLC (Westborough, MA) has hired Poul Strange, MD, PhD, as its chief scientific officer. Previously vice president of U.S. medical affairs in the diabetes division at Sanofi-Aventis (Paris), Strange's first priority will be to oversee the medical affairs and clinical development of the company's lead product, the h-Patch insulin-delivery system, which is scheduled for commercial launch in the second half of 2007. A wholly owned subsidiary of BioValve Technologies Inc. (Westborough, MA), Valeritas focuses on developing medical technologies for the treatment of diabetes and other acute and chronic diseases.
NeoGuide Systems Inc. (Los Gatos, CA) has named Austin Noll as its new president and CEO. Amir Belson, MD, company founder and the inventor of the company's core technology, will remain full-time with NeoGuide as a board member and the chief technology officer. Noll takes the helm of NeoGuide as it prepares for commercialization of its flagship product, the NeoGuide endoscopy system. Prior to joining NeoGuide, Noll held numerous leadership positions at Medtronic over a 13-year period. Most recently he was senior vice president of marketing and business development for Medtronic Neurologic Technologies. Noll's appointment followed shortly after NeoGuide's hiring of Ian Felix as vice president of operations.
Biotest Diagnostics Corp. (BDC; Denville, NJ) has appointed Candace K. Williams to the newly created position of vice president of transfusion diagnostics. Williams' responsibilities will include building the BDC transfusion diagnostics sales and support organization and will focus on expanding BDC's manual and automated blood group serology business in North America. Most recently, Williams served as the director of immunohematology systems for Olympus America (Center Valley, PA). BDC is a subsidiary of Biotest AG (Dreieich, Germany), a worldwide supplier of manual and automated solutions to the blood bank industry.
Royal Philips Electronics (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) has appointed Stephen H. Rusckowski as CEO of Philips Medical Systems (Andover, MA). Rusckowski succeeds Jouko Karvinen, who has been named the next CEO of Stora Enso Oyj (Helsinki, Finland), a global paper, packaging, and forest products company. Prior to his new appointment, Rusckowski had global responsibility for the imaging systems business group of Philips Medical Systems. Since 1984, Rusckowski has held numerous management positions with the healthcare division of Hewlett-Packard- Agilent Technologies (Santa Clara, CA). He was the general manager of Agilent's healthcare solutions group when Philips acquired the business in 2001.
St. Jude Medical Inc. (St. Paul, MN) has appointed Mark D. Carlson, MD, as chief medical officer and senior vice president of clinical affairs for St. Jude Medical's cardiac rhythm management division. In his new role, Carlson will be responsible for coordinating clinical studies that investigate new and existing cardiac devices and therapies and will be St. Jude Medical's chief liaison to the medical community. Carlson most recently served as professor of medicine and associate vice president for government relations at Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland). He also recently chaired the Heart Rhythm Society task force that developed policy recommendations regarding postmarket surveillance of medical device performance.
Cordis Corp. (Miami Lakes, FL), a Johnson & Johnson company, has appointed David E. Kandzari, MD, to the position of chief medical officer. In this newly created role, Kandzari will oversee the clinical and medical affairs activities for the cardiology division of Cordis. Most recently, Kandzari was assistant professor of interventional cardiology and genomic sciences and assistant professor of medicine and molecular genetics and microbiology at the Duke University Medical Center (Durham, NC).
Johnson & Johnson Inc. (J&J; New Brunswick, NJ) announced that Robert J. Darretta, vice chairman of the company's board of directors and chief financial officer, has decided to retire in early 2007 after a 38-year career with the company. Dominic J. Caruso, vice president of J&J's group finance organization, has been appointed corporate vice president of finance and CFO. Caruso has led J&J's group finance organization since December 2005. Previously, he was vice president of group finance for the medical devices and diagnostics group and a member of the group's operating committee.
Accumetrics Inc. (San Diego), a privately held medical device company and maker of the VerifyNow family of diagnostic tests that measure platelet function, has appointed Steven T. Frankel as CEO and a member of its board of directors. Frankel has served in top-level executive positions in the medical diagnostics industry for 30 years and was most recently president of Acon Laboratories Inc. (San Diego). Accumetrics cofounder Robert S. Hillman will assume the role of chairman of the board and serve as liaison to the scientific and medical community, as well as pharmaceutical and device companies.
Transport Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Framingham, MA), a developer of drug-device combination products for the topical treatment of dermatological conditions, has named Navneet Sharma as vice president of quality systems and operational excellence. In his new role, Sharma is responsible for providing leadership and quality assurance in Transport's engineering, chemistry, biology, drug development, and manufacturing programs. Prior to joining Transport, Sharma held leadership positions at companies including Tyco Healthcare (Mansfield, MA); Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics (Raritan, NJ), a Johnson & Johnson company; and ConvaTec (Skillman, NJ), a Bristol-Myers Squibb company.
Siemens Medical Solutions (Malvern, PA) has announced the creation of its new image and knowledge management division. The new division will be led by Ajit Singh, PhD, who is transferring from his role as president of the Siemens oncology care systems division. Succeeding Singh as president of oncology care will be Holger Schmidt, formerly the president of Siemens' special systems division. Leaving his position as president and CEO of Siemens-Asahi Medical Technologies (Tokyo), Jochen Dick will assume responsibility as the new president of the special systems division.
Gentris Corp. (Research Triangle Park, NC) has appointed Andrea Gaedigk, PhD, to its scientific advisory board. Gaedigk's work encompasses basic and translational research at Children's Mercy Hospital & Clinics (Kansas City, MO), where she directs the pharmacogenetics core laboratory within the division of pediatric clinical pharmacology and medical toxicology.
Laparoscopic systems manufacturer Viking Systems Inc. (San Diego) has appointed Michael J. Manyak, MD, to its board of directors. Manyak is vice president of medical affairs for Cytogen Corp. (Princeton, NJ) and a professor of urology, engineering, microbiology, and tropical medicine at the George Washington University Medical Center (Washington, DC). He is also on staff at the Center for Prostate Disease Research at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
Richard E. Caruso, PhD, founder and chairman of Integra LifeSciences Corp. (Plainsboro, NJ), was named the overall Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2006 national award winner. Recognized for his pioneering role in the field of regenerative medicine, he was also named the national winner in the health sciences category of the competition. Caruso has been Integra's chairman since 1992 and served as CEO from 1992 to 1997.