Deborah brings over 25 years of experience in developing and commercializing novel therapeutics across three continents. She is the former President and CEO at FORUM Pharmaceuticals, which focused on therapies for Alzheimer’s disease, other dementias and schizophrenia. She served as CEO and President of Millennium Pharmaceuticals from 2005 to 2013, bringing novel therapies through development and commercialization in the areas of cancer and inflammatory disorders. In 2008, Takeda Pharmaceuticals of Japan acquired Millennium for $8.8 billion and, following the acquisition, Deborah became the first woman to be appointed to the board of Takeda in the company’s 236-year history. Prior to Millennium, Deborah worked at Novartis including an 11-year tenure leading the Novartis Oncology business in North America, developing and launching a number of transformational cancer therapies notably Gleevec®, the first targeted cancer therapy, as well as Femara®, Zometa®, Sandostatin® and Exjade®. During her tenure at Novartis, the North American oncology business grew from $50 million to more than $2.2 billion.
Deborah is a member of the board of trustees for the Massachusetts General Physicians Organization, Northeastern University, and Boston’s Museum of Science. She serves on the Department of Chemistry Visiting Committee at MIT and on the MGH Research Advisory Council. She has served for many years as a board member of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization. Deborah completed her medical training at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.