With decades of leadership experience in the life science industry, our team fosters an ethos of innovation to develop regenerative medicine therapies aimed at treating a range of serious liver diseases.
Thomas P. Hess
President & Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Hess, is currently under agreement with Danforth and he is a seasoned executive with significant experience in managing and leading teams as well as overseeing the financial and operational responsibilities of private and publicly traded life sciences companies. He has over twenty years of experience and has been a with Danforth since September 2021. Mr. Hess recently served as Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Finance of Genomind, Inc., until his retirement in May 2021. From September 2011 until its sale in April 2014, Mr. Hess served as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Finance of The Keane Organization. Mr. Hess also previously served in various other capacities including, but not limited to, Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Yaupon Therapeutics, Inc.; Chief Financial Officer and Vice President, Finance of Adolor Corporation; Corporate Controller of Vicuron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; and Senior Manager, Accounting and Audit of KPMG. Mr. Hess received his B.S. in accounting from The Pennsylvania State University and his MBA from Katz Graduate School of Business, University of Pittsburgh and is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Pennsylvania. He currently serves on the Alumni Council of Penn State and is the Chairman of the Nittany Lion Club Annual Fund.
Thomas Jurgensen has over 30 years of corporate, transactional and intellectual property legal experience and is licensed to practice in California, Colorado and before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Mr. Jurgensen is currently in private practice with Optima Law Group. APC in San Diego, California serving as its Managing Shareholder since he founded the firm in February 2011. Optima Law Group serves a diverse base of life science and technology clients with a focus on early stage and emerging companies and also has offices in Boulder, Colorado. He previously served as Managing Shareholder of Catalyst Law Group in San Diego, California from December 2003 to December 2010. From January 2001 to December 2003 he practiced corporate and intellectual property law with the Firm of Blanchard, Krasner and French in La Jolla, California while also serving as the Acting General Counsel of Ligand Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Prior to that, Mr. Jurgensen served as Vice President and General Counsel for The Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California from January 1999 to December 2000, Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary for Molecular Biosystems, Inc. in San Diego, California from February 1997 to November 1998, and Assistant General Counsel at Ligand Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in San Diego, California from March 1993 to February 1997. Mr. Jurgensen also was an Intellectual Property Attorney at Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing (3M) in St. Paul, Minnesota and an Associate Attorney with the law firm of Merchant and Gould, PA in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Mr. Jurgensen received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a Chemistry minor from the University of Wisconsin River Falls in May 1981. He then received his Master of Science degree in Animal Ecology from Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa in December 1985 and conducted research in Southern Chile under grants from the National Science Foundation and the Organization of American States. He received his law degree from the University of Oregon School of Law in May 1989 and was awarded Order of the Coif and served as Managing Editor on the Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation. Mr. Jurgensen has been a Founder of numerous technology companies including Allylix, Inc. He has served in a number of executive rolls at both private and public companies, including as CEO, President, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary and has and still serves on several private company Board of Directors.
Jeffrey N. Miner
Chief Scientific Officer
Jeffrey N. Miner has held management and executive leadership positions in pharmaceutical and life science companies for more than 20 years. He has extensive biotech and pharmaceutical experience spanning discovery, preclinical, translational and clinical development. He currently serves as founder and Chief Scientific Officer for Viscient Bio Inc., a position he has held since 2017. Prior to founding Viscient, Dr. Miner was Executive Director of Biology at AstraZeneca from 2013 to 2017, and Senior Director of Ardea Biosciences, a member of the AstraZeneca group, from 2008 to 2013. From 1993 to 2007, he was Head of Molecular and Cellular Biology at Ligand Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Miner is currently a Faculty Advisor and Molecular Biology Institute Associate at San Diego State University, and is a Board Member of the Scientific Advisory Board for ARTA Bioscience. Jeff completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of California San Francisco in 1993 on glucocorticoid receptor gene regulation in Keith Yamamoto’s laboratory. He received his Ph.D. in Microbiology in 1989 from Oregon State University conducting graduate research in Virology in Dennis Hruby’s laboratory and he received his B.S. degree in Biology from The College of Idaho in 1984. Dr. Miner has drug discovery experience in the Inflammation, Oncology, Endocrine, Hepatology and Cardiovascular therapeutic areas and his work has led to, or enhanced, the development of multiple marketed medicines. His target areas of expertise include Nuclear Receptors, Kinases and Transporters. He has published over 70 peer reviewed articles and book chapters and is an inventor on multiple patents.