– USA, MA – Gamida Cell Ltd. (Nasdaq:GMDA), a leading cellular and immune therapeutics company, today announced the nominations of Shawn Cline Tomasello and Stephen T. Wills to its board of directors.
These nominations require approval at the Annual Shareholders Meeting, which will take place in May 2019. If elected, Ms. Tomasello will join the compensation committee, and Mr. Wills will join the company’s audit committee, bringing commercial, operational and financial experience to Gamida Cell’s board of directors as the company advances its clinical development candidates: NiCord®, an investigational advanced cell therapy in Phase 3 clinical development designed to enhance and expand the life-saving benefits of hematopoietic stem cell (bone marrow) transplant, and NAM-NK, an investigational, cell-based cancer immunotherapy in Phase 1 development in patients with non-Hodgkin lymphoma and multiple myeloma.
“We are delighted to nominate Shawn and Stephen to our Board of Directors. Stephen brings a depth of financial and operational experience in public accounting and healthcare, and Shawn’s experience in leading the commercialization of multiple first-in-class medicines for the treatment of cancer is a potentially tremendous asset as we begin executing commercial readiness activities for NiCord,” said Julian Adams, Ph.D., chief executive officer at Gamida Cell. “We look forward to their contributions to as we continue to advance our pipeline.”
“Shawn and Stephen will replace two current board members, Roger Kornberg and Boaz Lifschitz, who will complete their tenure on Gamida Cell’s board of directors in May. We are grateful for Roger and Boaz’s service and commitment to the company. They brought a wealth of expertise as we advanced Gamida Cell toward late-stage development and potential commercialization, and we are pleased that Roger will continue to work with the company as a member of our scientific advisory board,” Dr. Adams continued.
About Shawn Tomasello
Ms. Tomasello has over 30 years of strategic experience in building world-class organizations encompassing all aspects of commercial and medical affairs functions. From 2015 to 2018, Ms. Tomasello served as chief commercial officer of Kite Pharma, now part of Gilead Sciences, where she oversaw the global commercialization of Yescarta®, the first approved CAR-T therapy for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. From 2014 to 2015, Ms. Tomasello served as the chief commercial officer of commercial and medical affairs at Pharmacyclics, now part of AbbVie, where she led commercial and medical affairs activities for Imbruvica®, a first-in-class treatment for hematologic malignancies. From 2005 to 2014, Ms. Tomasello served in leading commercial roles with multiple major pharmaceutical companies, including Celgene as president of the Americas hematology and oncology, where she led the company through five successful product launches encompassing 11 indications and played a critical role in acquisitions. Ms. Tomasello received her B.S. in marketing from the University of Cincinnati and her M.B.A. from Murray State University in Kentucky.
“I am pleased to be nominated to the Gamida Cell Board at such a pivotal time in the company’s growth,” stated Ms. Tomasello. “With patient enrollment in the Phase 3 study of NiCord expected to be completed in the second half of 2019 and activities underway to enable potential regulatory submissions and launch, I look forward to supporting Gamida Cell in its efforts to deliver a new standard of care to patients in need of bone marrow transplant.”
About Stephen Wills
Mr. Wills brings extensive operational, financial and transactional experience over nearly three decades in the life sciences and accounting industries. He has served as chief financial officer of Palatin Technologies, a publicly-traded biotechnology company developing peptide therapeutics, since 1997 and also serves as Palatin’s chief operating officer and executive vice president. Mr. Wills serves as active chairman of MediWound Ltd., a publicly-traded biotechnology company developing treatments for burns and wound management. Previously, Mr. Wills was executive chairman and interim principal executive officer of Derma Sciences, a provider of advanced wound care products now part of Integra LifeSciences. Mr. Wills, a certified public accountant, earned his B.S. in accounting from West Chester University, and an M.S. in taxation from Temple University.
Commented Mr. Wills, “This is an exciting time to be joining Gamida Cell’s board of directors. The company has demonstrated substantial progress since completing its initial public offering late last year and continues to leverage the transformative potential of its proprietary nicotinamide-, or NAM-based, cell expansion technology, to deliver a multi-product pipeline. I look forward to contributing to Gamida Cell’s progress as a leader in advanced cell therapy.”
About Gamida Cell
Gamida Cell is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company committed to developing advanced cell therapies with the potential to cure blood cancers and rare, serious hematologic diseases. We are leveraging our proprietary nicotinamide-based, or NAM-based, cell expansion technology to develop product candidates designed to address the limitations of cell therapies.
For more, visit www.gamida-cell.com.
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