VNB’s current structure consists of three tiers including the Executive Team (Full-time Chief Science Officer and part-time Chief Financial Officer) reporting to the CEO, the CEO reporting to the Board of Directors (BODs), and a four person BODs. The Executive Team consists of the following individuals:
Tom Roberts, B.S., M.B.A, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer (San Antonio, TX). Tom has 30 years of experience in significant leadership roles and executive management at large corporations, mid-caps, and start-ups in the medical device and biotech sectors. He has held senior leadership positions at Acelity and Hoffmann-La Roche, including Head of Product Development and Global Marketing for a billion-dollar healthcare brand. In this role, Tom led the global development, regulatory clearance, and commercialization of 10+ healthcare technology products globally. Prior to joining VNB, Tom served as CEO/Board Director at Invictus Medical, Inc. (San Antonio, TX), a start-up healthcare technology company where he successfully raised $10M in financing and directed the full development, regulatory clearance, and commercialization of a novel University of Texas-licensed healthcare technology. Tom received his B.S (Biology) from Denison University and M.B.A. from Indiana Wesleyan University.
Matthew Gdovin, Ph.D., Founder, Chief Scientific Officer & Board Director (San Antonio, TX). After receiving his Ph.D. in Physiology at Dartmouth College, Dr. Gdovin completed his post-doctoral fellowship at The University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine. From 1997 to 2018, he was an Assistant and Full Professor at the UTSA. During his academic tenure, Dr. Gdovin incorporated VNB becoming its full-time Chief Science Officer in 2018. In this role, he helped raise $1.28M in financing, participated in the solidification of critical strategic partnerships, and led the development of VNB’s drug. Dr. Gdovin has been awarded over $3.2M by the NIH for research in respiratory control and neurobiology.
Greg Espenhover, CPA, Founder, Chief Financial Officer & Board Director (San Antonio, TX) Greg is a successful entrepreneur and CPA with 30+ years’ experience in providing accounting, tax, and business consulting services. Since 1988, he has been a CPA under the Texas State Board of Accountancy, as well as a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants and holds Certified Information Technology Professional AICPA designation. In 1999, Greg became a Shareholder and Partner with Davidson Freedle Espenhover & Overby, P.C., providing accounting, auditing, consulting, and tax services for private companies.
In addition to the Executive Leadership Team, VNB has secured the expert guidance of the following professionals:
George Peoples, M.D., FACS, Clinical Advisor (San Antonio, TX). Dr. Peoples is Founder/Director of Cancer Vaccine Development Program (CVDP), affiliated with Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences (USUHS; Bethesda, MD). He is Professor (adjunct) of Surgical Oncology at MD Anderson Cancer Center and CEO of boutique CRO Cancer Insight, which has 20+ years of clinical trial development and management, 1,500+ patients dosed Phase 1/2 trials, and 9 INDs. Dr. Peoples is a cancer immunotherapy expert with 5 licensed cancer vaccines and 305+ peer-reviewed manuscripts, abstracts, and chapters. Dr. Peoples provides critical insight pertaining to Cancer therapy development, IND-enabling studies, and human clinical studies.
Michael Liss, M.D., Collaborator (San Antonio, TX). Dr. Liss specializes in genitourinary system cancers (prostate, kidney). After graduating with honors from the Medical School of Wisconsin, he attended University of California, Irvine, and trained under leaders in laparoscopic and robotic urology. Dr. Liss is the current site PI for SWOG (formerly Southwest Oncology Group), one of the biggest cooperative clinical trial groups in the world. He serves as medical director of clinical research at UT Health (San Antonio, TX) and is an active member of the May’s Cancer Center’s Genetics and High-risk Cancer Screening Clinic. Dr. Liss provides critical insight pertaining to IND-enabling studies and human clinical studies.
Barry Burgdorf, B.B.A., M.B.A., J.D., Partner, Hogan Lovells, Corporate Law Firm (Austin, TX). Mr. Burgdorf helps public and private companies, emerging companies, and venture capital, private equity, universities, and higher education clients, with a variety of complex mergers, acquisitions, financings, IP, and other corporate transactions in the life sciences sector, with particular focus on technology, commercialization, research, and development. Barry, provides critical insight pertaining to governance, financing, and strategic partnerships.
Luis De Taboada, Vice President of Advanced Research, DJO Global Inc., Scientific Advisor (Vista, CA). Luis is a medical device executive with broad experience in all aspects of the medical device enterprise, with specific training and experience in the use of electrophysical agents (particularly, lasers) as therapeutic interventions in musculoskeletal and neurological conditions. He has lead teams at startups, mid-size, and large companies through the development of several medical devices – from conceptualization, through clinical studies and regulatory approvals, to successful commercialization. Luis provides critical insight pertaining to laser light delivery parameters regarding animal and human testing.
In addition to the before mentioned Advisors, VNB will actively recruit and partner with the necessary expertise to successfully execute the overall regulatory strategy including IND-enabling studies, IND application preparation and filing, and human clinical studies. To that end, the company is in discussions with, and has solicited proposals from Guidehouse Consulting, Charles River Consulting, and LabCorp. Once the necessary funding is secured, VNB will formally engage the appropriate partner.