Board of Directors

The TDG Board of Directors is comprised of distinguished UCLA faculty and executives from a range of industries, including biopharmaceuticals, engineering, finance, private equity, and venture capital. Board members provide guidance in making strategic investment decisions, oversight and direction to TDG's activities.
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Norman Abrams

Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus, UCLA

Norman served as acting chancellor of UCLA in 2006-2007. He retired from the Law School faculty in 2007 with the titles of Acting Chancellor Emeritus and Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus, but he has been recalled and continues to teach and write in the areas of anti-terrorism law, federal criminal law and evidence.

Abrams joined the UCLA Law School faculty and has been a member of the UCLA family since 1959. From 1991 to 2001 he served as UCLA's vice chancellor of academic personnel, overseeing faculty appointments and promotions on the campus. He served as interim dean of the law school from 2003 to 2004, and earlier had served as associate dean, from 1989 to 1991. In May, 2012, Abrams received the award of highest distinction conferred by the UCLA Emeriti Association, which is their Lifetime Distinguished Service Award.

The fifth edition of Abrams' groundbreaking casebook on federal criminal law, Federal Criminal Law and Its Enforcement (with Beale and Klein), was published in 2010. Another of his books, Anti-Terrorism and Criminal Enforcement, (4th edition, 2012), is the first casebook to deal comprehensively with the rapidly evolving field of anti-terrorism law and the criminal enforcement process. He is also a co-author of Evidence - Cases and Materials (with Judge Jack B. Weinstein, et al.). Over his long career, he has written on many subjects, including prosecutorial discretion, federal jurisdiction, conspiracy law, evidentiary privileges and, more recently, anti-terrorism.

Before joining UCLA, Abrams served as an associate in law at Columbia University Law School and as a research associate and director of Harvard-Brandeis Cooperative Research for Israel's Legal Development at the Harvard Law School. He has also been a consultant to various state and federal commissions and professional committees, and, while on leave from UCLA, in 1966-67, he was appointed a special assistant to the Attorney General of the United States, serving in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. He has taught as a visiting professor at Stanford University Law School, UC Berkeley Law School, the Hebrew University Faculty of Law, Bar-Ilan School of Law, University of Southern California Law School and Loyola University (Los Angeles) School of Law.

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Michael J. Cleare

Michael J. Cleare

Associate Vice Provost for Research, University of Pennsylvania

From 2000-2007, Mike was the Executive Director of Science and Technology Ventures at Columbia University in New York. This position included responsibility for all technology transfer activities at Columbia and involved licensing, spin off/start up companies, industrial research funding and domestic and international partnerships relating to IP. In August 2007, Mike joined the University of Pennsylvania as Associate Vice Provost for Research, responsible for all technology transfer, IP management and industrial liaison activities.
 
Before joining Columbia University, Mike Cleare worked for 30 years at Johnson Matthey, a UK-based multinational world leader in advanced materials technology. His experiences range from the Senior R&D Executive through Business Development to a range of senior business management positions, and included service on the main Board of the Company for four years. While in R&D, Mike was involved in the discovery and development of a major new class of anti-cancer drugs; he is credited as one of the inventors of the platinum-based drug carboplatin. He served as President of several of the company's major divisions, including Pharmaceutical Materials, Chemicals and Metals, Catalytic Systems and Electronic Materials. He has managed complex global business, negotiated and closed multi-million dollar licensing and technology transfer deals, and entered into multiple research funding agreements with major universities. For nine years, Mike was a member of the board of directors of the Canadian biotechnology company, AnorMed, which he helped to spin off from Johnson Matthey in 1996. He has published more than 40 articles and papers and holds 10 patents.
 
Dr. Cleare serves as a member of the Board of Directors, Arizona Technology Enterprises (AzTE), the exclusive intellectual property management and technology transfer organization for Arizona State University.
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Judy Gasson

Judy Gasson

Director, UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center

Judith C. Gasson, a professor of biological chemistry and medicine, became director of UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1995. A molecular biologist, Gasson is responsible for one of only 39 institutions nationwide designated as comprehensive cancer centers by the National Cancer Institute. In addition to her administrative duties, Gasson also is a gifted scientist. She was instrumental in purifying for the first time a hormone-like substance that increases the speed of bone marrow cell reproduction. That substance, called GM-CSF, is used to help prevent infections in cancer patients, and to allow patients to tolerate more chemotherapy and radiation than had previously been possible. In 2005, Gasson was named a co-director of the UCLA Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Medicine and she recently testified before a key Senate subcommittee on the promise of stem cell research in cancer. Gasson also serves as a board member for the American Association for Cancer Research. She earned a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from Colorado State University and a doctorate in physiology at the University of Colorado. Gasson did post doctoral work at the Salk Institute in La Jolla. In 1983, she left the Salk Institute to join UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Center, which comprises more than 240 researchers and clinicians engaged in research, prevention, detection, control, treatment and education. One of the nation's largest comprehensive cancer centers, the Jonsson center is dedicated to promoting research and translating the results into leading-edge clinical studies. In July 2005, the Jonsson Cancer Center was named the best cancer center in the western United States by U.S. News & World Report, a ranking it has held for six consecutive years.

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Shannon Hansen

Shannon Hansen

Division VP and Associate General Counsel at Abbott Laboratories

Ms. Hansen heads the legal group of Abbott Diabetes Care, located in Alameda, California, a global healthcare company focused on diagnostic and medical devices and other products for people living with diabetes. At Abbott, Ms. Hansen provides advice to management on all legal aspects of technology licensing, patent strategies, business development, R&D, procurement, sales, marketing, and other matters impacting the Diabetes Care division. Prior to this role, Ms. Hansen led the IP Group of Abbott Diabetes where she managed the patent group responsible for strategic patenting, licensing including academic licensing, IP litigation, and business counseling.
 
Before joining Abbott, Ms. Hansen served as the Associate Solicitor at the United States Patent and Trademark Office where she represented the USPTO in Appellate and District Courts in patent, trademark, and disciplinary matters. She advised the USPTO and other administrative offices on patent policy and worked with Congress on the various Patent Reform bills. She also worked with the Solicitor General and the Department of Justice on several intellectual property cases heard before the U.S. Supreme Court.
 
Prior to this role at the Patent and Trademark Office, Ms. Hansen practiced law for over 10 years with the Los Angeles office of Kirkland & Ellis, LLP where she focused on IP counseling including licensing and conducting due diligence for the IP aspects of corporate deals, and complex commercial litigation, including patent, trademark, copyright, and antitrust litigation. As a Partner of the firm, she represented clients in a variety of businesses including biotechnology, telecommunications, software, and chemical industries. As part of her outreach activities through the firm, Ms. Hansen served as a judge for moot court competitions for the UCLA School of Law. Ms. Hansen also worked on various corporate and intellectual property matters in the international group at Mori Hamada & Matsumoto Law Offices in Tokyo, Japan.
 
Before embarking in a career in law, Ms. Hansen was a product development engineer for E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. where she was responsible for new product development, implementing new technology developed in the research organization, and ensuring compliance with various environmental laws.
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Paul Hudson

Paul Hudson

Founder, Paul C. Hudson Consulting

Mr. Hudson is the founder of Paul C. Hudson Consulting where he combines his interest in sustainability strategies for nonprofits and his experience with for-profit mergers, collaborations, and consolidations to bring best business practices, strategies and systems to the nonprofit sector. Hudson Consulting advises and assists nonprofit organizations with structuring, financing and implementing strategic alliances including collaborations, mergers, acquisitions, partnerships, cooperatives and other organizational restructurings.
 
Mr. Hudson is also the immediate past Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Broadway Federal Bank, the largest and only publicly owned African American bank west of the Mississippi. Broadway Federal is a certified Community Development Financial Institution and has served the underserved minority markets of South Los Angeles since 1947.
 
Prior to joining Broadway Federal in 1980, Hudson practiced law with the Washington D.C. firm of WilmerHale. In 1975, he returned to Los Angeles to join the law firm established by his father, Hudson, Sandoz and Brown.
 
He is a past President of the Los Angeles NAACP and past Chairman of the Los Angeles City Community Redevelopment Agency. He has also served on several industry and business boards, including California Bankers Association, California Business Roundtable, Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, Greater Los Angeles African American Chamber of Commerce, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation.
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Chistoph Hüls

Chistoph Hüls

Chief Innovation Officer, Merck KGaA

Christoph Huels is responsible for the corporate innovation strategy and the technology foresight at Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. He is experienced in different businesses at Merck in Healthcare as well as Performance Materials (specialty chemicals). Including operational excellence in R&D, licensing, bio-partnering as well as the Corporate Venture Fund of Merck. Before joining Merck in 2008, he was CEO of Protagen AG, a German biotech company focussing on high value services in protein analysis especially under GMP, tool and software development for R&D in proteomics and the development of diagnostics based on a technology platform around protein biochips. He managed there several rounds of financing for the development of diagnostics as well as the build-up of a profitable service business in protein analysis. From 1999 to 2001 Christoph was responsible for project and portfolio management at Azupharma GmbH and CoKG, the German subsidiary of the Generics business of the Novartis group. He started his professional career in 1994 at Hoechst AG. After two years in the pharma division of Hoechst (today Sanofi) in Rheumatology/Immunology early phase drug development, he was working in increasing responsibility on projects in cell adhesion, protein evolution and RNA-splicing in the Central Research department. Christoph received his PhD in Biology from the Johannes-Gutenberg-University in Mainz at the Institute of Immunology.

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Aya Jakobovits

Aya Jakobovits

Founder, President, CEO and Director, Adicet Bio, Inc.

Dr. Jakobovits is the Founder, President and CEO of Adicet Bio, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, which together with its wholly-owned Israeli subsidiary, Adicet Bio Israel, is focused on the development of next-generation immunotherapies.   Prior to starting Adicet, Dr. Jakobovits served as a Venture Partner with OrbiMed Advisors. From 2010-2013 she served as President & Founding CEO of Kite Pharma Inc., a leader in autologous T cell therapy.  Prior to Kite Pharma, she served as Executive Vice President, Head of Research and Development at Agensys Inc., an affiliate of Astellas Pharma, Inc.  Before Agensys’ acquisition in 2007, for a deal value of $537 million, she served as Senior Vice President, Technology and Corporate Development and Chief Scientific Officer, and led Agensys transition from a small gene discovery lab into a fully integrated biotech company with a proprietary portfolio of novel cancer targets and a clinical pipeline of cancer therapeutic antibodies. Before Agensys, Dr. Jakobovits served as Director, Discovery Research and Principal Scientist at Abgenix Inc., which was spun out of Cell Genesys based on XenoMouse® technology developed under her leadership. Abgenix was acquired by Amgen for $2.2 billion. 
  
Dr. Jakobovits received her Ph.D. in Life Sciences from the Weizmann Institute of Sciences, Israel, and was a postdoctoral fellow at Genentech and at UCSF.  Dr. Jakobovits is an author of over 50 scientific publications and inventor on over 100 patents. 
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Betsy Wood Knapp

Betsy Wood Knapp

Founder and CEO, BigPicture Investors LLC,

Betsy is the founder and chief executive officer of BigPicture Investors LLC, which provides investment capital, management expertise and consulting to startups and early-stage companies. She is chair of the board of Kreido Biofuels Inc., a company which provides unique chemical process technology and manufacturing capability for biofuels. Ms. Knapp founded the Entrepreneur's Hall of Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA and serves on the Board of Visitors of Anderson Graduate School of Management. Ms. Knapp also serves as board member of the UCLA Foundation, where she is the Chairperson of the Philanthropy Committee.
 
The Knapp Foundation, which makes grants in education, medicine and the arts, has made many gifts to UCLA, including the endowed Betsy Wood Knapp Professorship in Innovation and Creativity at the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Ms. Knapp also established the Knapp Competition for excellence in business planning and venture initiation at Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA
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Rajit Malhotra

Rajit Malhotra

Executive Chairman, AmperSand Biopharmaceuticals

Rajit Malhotra is a Technology Entrepreneur, Executive and Investor. He invests in, advises and helps build rapidly growing, early stage companies. He has a deep expertise in healthcare, as well as extensive experience across a broad range of industries, including Biopharma, Artificial Intelligence, Energy, and Real Estate. He is the Executive Chairman at AmperSand Biopharma, a rapidly growing company. He is also the Executive Chairman of Tour Engine, a novel combustion engine technology based business. He also advises other companies, both within and outside his investment portfolio.
 
Rajit founded his first business while still in college, building it into the largest retail chain of Paint Technology stores in Oman & Dubai. He was a co-founder and board member of one of India’s largest biotech companies, Shantha Biotech, which was sold to Sanofi Aventis for over $850M in 2009. Amongst a few other ventures, he engineered a rapid performance turnaround at one of the largest pharmacy chains in Oman.
 
In 2002, Rajit joined the LA office of McKinsey, and eventually took over as the Managing Partner for the SoCal region, until leaving in 2016. While at McKinsey, he counseled CEOs, Boards and senior executives at Fortune 500 companies He was a leader of the healthcare, public sector and EPNG practices. His healthcare clients include biopharma, medical products manufacturers, providers and distribution companies. He accumulated extensive experience across a broad range of C-suite level issues, including organizational transformation, growth strategy, commercial excellence, capability building, mergers and acquisitions and driving change at scale.
 
Rajit lives in Los Angeles with his two children and golden retriever. He is actively involved with several civic and charitable projects. Rajit is on the Board of the UCLA Technology Development Corporation and the CAFAM Museum. He has been on the Dean’s Alumni Leadership Council at Harvard University’s Kennedy School, a member of the Southern California Leadership Council, and the Board of the Saban Free Clinic. He was a founding member of the Oman Chapter of YEO in the mid 1990s and is currently a member, and on the Executive Committee, of the Bel Air Chapter of YPO.
 
Rajit received an MPA/ID from Harvard University’s Kennedy School and his MBA from Kellogg at Northwestern University. He has dual undergraduate degrees in Business and Liberal Arts from the Wharton School and the College at the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated Summa Cum Laude.
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William Mitchell

William Mitchell

Founding Partner, Sequel Venture Partners, LLC

William E. (Bill) Mitchell is the founding partner of Sequel Venture Partners, LLC, formed in January 2010 to invest in managed IT services companies utilizing venture capital, private equity and other investment vehicles. Prior to this, Mr. Mitchell was chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Arrow Electronics, Inc., a $20 billion Fortune 150 company providing advanced supply chain solutions to the technology industry. He joined Arrow in February 2003 as president and chief executive officer. He was named chairman of the board in May 2006. Mr. Mitchell retired as chairman of the board and chief executive officer on January 1, 2010.
 
Mr. Mitchell began his career in 1973 at Raychem Corporation, where he spent 20 years in various roles of increasing responsibility in finance, manufacturing operations, international operations, and worldwide sales and marketing. In 1993, he was named president and chief executive officer of Nashua Corporation, a manufacturer of specialty products and services for print application needs. In 1995, he became chairman, president and chief executive officer of Sequel, Inc., then a privately held computer services and maintenance company. Prior to joining Arrow, Mr. Mitchell sold Sequel, Inc. to Solectron Corporation, and then led the successful formation of Solectron Global Services, a $1.2 billion technology services company, now part of Flextronics International.
 
Currently, Mr. Mitchell serves on the Boards of Directors of Rogers Corporation where he serves as lead independent director; Humana Incorporated, where he serves on the Audit and Nominating/Governance Committees; and Spansion Incorporated, where he serves as chair of the Nominating/Governance Committee as well as the Compensation Committee. He served on the Board of Directors of National Semiconductor prior to its sale to Texas Instruments, as well as the Brown-Forman Corporation, where he was chair of the Audit Committee. He is chair-elect of the UCLA Foundation and serves on the Board of the UCLA Foundation, the UCLA Investment Company, and the Board of Trustees at the Menlo School in Atherton, California, where he serves on the Executive Committee.
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Judy D. Olian

Judy D. Olian

Dean, UCLA Anderson

Judy D. Olian, Ph.D., is the eighth dean of UCLA Anderson School of Management and is the John E. Anderson Chair in Management. She began her appointment in January 2006 after serving more than five years as dean and professor of management at the Smeal College of Business Administration at Pennsylvania State University. Under her leadership, UCLA Anderson has hired a record number of faculty from the world’s best research institutions, launched new degree and certificate programs, initiated a diverse set of global degree and immersion courses, and developed targeted partnerships with an emphasis on Asia and Latin America.
 
Dean Olian served as the 2008 chairman of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), the premier business accrediting and management thought leadership organization in the world. As dean of UCLA Anderson, Dean Olian leads an institution that annually provides management education to almost 2,000 students enrolled in MBA, Executive MBA, Fully-Employed MBA, Masters of Financial Engineering and doctoral programs, and to over 2,000 professional managers through executive education programs. The school has several widely recognized research centers and a global alumni network of more than 37,000 graduates. Prior to her tenure at the Smeal College at Penn State, she served in various faculty and executive roles at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.
 
Widely published in journals on human resource management, top management team composition, and the business alignment of management systems, Olian wrote a weekly syndicated newspaper column and hosted a monthly television show on current topics in business. She is a sought-after speaker and has consulted for major corporations. She serves on the advisory boards of Beijing University’s Guanghua School of Business; the US Studies Centre at the University of Sydney; and Luminous Capital.
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Barbara K. Sosnowski

Barbara K. Sosnowski

Vice President and Global Head – External R&D Innovation – Pharmatherapeutics and WRD External Partnerships, Pfizer, Inc.

Barbara Sosnowski is Vice President and Global Head, External R&D Innovation Pharmatherapeutics and WRD External Partnerships.   As part of the Pharmatherapeutics team, Barbara is the cluster lead for Cardiovascular Metabolic and Inflammation and Immunology Research Units for externally focused efforts.  Dr. Sosnowski has more than 30 years  in the health care industry.  Prior to joining Pfizer 6 years ago, Barbara was Vice President, Biologics Development of Cardium Therapeutics and was appointed Chief Operating Officer of Tissue Repair Company following Cardium’s acquisition of Tissue Repair Company in August 2006. Prior to the acquisition, Dr. Sosnowski served as President and CEO of Tissue Repair Company. From June 2001 to December 2004 she served as Vice President Research and Development of Selective Genetics Inc. a tissue repair company that developed wound repair, orthopedic and cardiovascular products. At Selective Genetics, she co-invented and helped develop the targeted gene therapy program, both viral and non-viral. Prior to Selective Genetics she was employed by Prizm Pharmaceuticals from October 1992. Prior to joining Prizm, Dr. Sosnowski was at Ligand Pharmaceuticals, where her efforts were focused on identification of small molecule inhibitors of osteoporosis. Dr. Sosnowski received her BA in Biological Sciences from the University of California, Berkeley and PhD in Biological Sciences from Johns Hopkins University. She is also a registered patent agent.

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Tom Unterman

Tom Unterman

Founding Partner, Rustic Canyon Partners

Tom is the founding partner of Rustic Canyon Partners, one of the largest venture capital firms in Los Angeles. Through Rustic Canyon, he has raised venture funds in excess of $800 million. Among his notable investments are Netscape, LoopNet, Glass Lewis, and Fulcrum Bioenergy. Prior to forming Rustic Canyon Partners, Mr. Unterman had a long career as a corporate executive. From 1992 to 1999, he held several executive positions at Times Mirror Company, including Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. At Times Mirror, he led the acquisition and divestiture activity and oversaw the investment program. Prior to joining Times Mirror, Tom was one of California’s leading corporate attorneys, practicing first with Orrick, Herrington from 1969 to 1986 and then with Morrison & Foerster from 1986 to 1992.
 
Tom also serves as the Chairman of the Board of MediaSpan Group, Inc., and a Director of Agribuys, Bassoe Offshore, FoodLink Online, LLC, The Deal, LLC, SLS Breeze Holdings, Inc., Practice Technologies, and RiverOne, Inc. He has been a Director of Fulcrum BioEnergy, Inc. since August 2007, Element K Corporation since February 2000 and WorldRes.com, Inc. since March 1999. He serves as a Director of Néo-Soft NSI SA, Transonic Combustion, Inc., ODS-Petrodata, Inc.(alternate name IHS-Petrodata, Inc.), Good Technology, Inc., Intrepid Learning Solutions, Inc., Navigating Cancer, Inc., RealPractice, Inc. and iCopyright, Inc. He serves as a Member of the Advisory Board at US Renewables Group, LLC. He has been a Member of Advisory Board at BlackLine Systems, Inc. since March 10, 2011.
 
Tom serves actively on the boards of the California Community Foundation, CalArts, Heal the Bay, and MOCA.
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Stephen Yslas

Stephen Yslas

Corporate VP and General Counsel, Northrop Grumman Corporation

Mr. Yslas served as corporate vice president and general counsel of Northrop Grumman Corporation. Previously, he served as Northrop’s corporate vice president, secretary and deputy general counsel and as chief counsel to the company's aircraft and electronics businesses, and also led the legal team on regulatory matters, including those involving the acquisitions of Litton, Newport News and TRW. His responsibilities included international, mergers and acquisitions, export control, labor and employment, employee benefits, environmental, antitrust, intellectual property, other federal and state regulatory matters, as well as Washington office legal support.
 
Before joining the company in 1975, Yslas worked for the Atlantic Richfield Company and the National Labor Relations Board. He served for 10 years as a Police Commissioner on the City of Los Angeles Police Commission.
 
Mr. Yslas has been with various non-profit and community organizations, including the Hispanic National and Mexican American Bar Associations. He is a founding member of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials. He also serves as a Trustee of Claremont McKenna College. He served as a Member of the Board of the Constitutional Rights Foundation and the Police Memorial Foundation.