Our People

Our People

Novan’s cutting-edge research and development comes from our team of dedicated scientists collaborating with top-level talent around the globe. We leverage our internal knowledge and external relationships to create a world-leading nitric oxide technology platform.

Our Leadership

Paula Brown Stafford

President, Chief Executive Officer, Chairman

Paula Brown Stafford
President, Chief Executive Officer, Chairman

Paula Brown Stafford is our President and Chief Executive Officer and was appointed as Chairman of our board of directors effective July 28, 2020. Ms. Stafford has served as our President since January 2019. Prior to her appointment as our Chief Executive Officer effective February 2, 2020, Ms. Stafford served as our Chief Operating Officer from January 2019 to February 2020 after serving as our Chief Development Officer from March 2017 to January 2019. Ms. Stafford has served as a member of our board of directors since August 2017. Prior to joining Novan, Ms. Stafford held various roles of increasing importance at Quintiles Transnational Holdings Inc. (now IQVIA Holdings Inc.), a leading multinational provider of biopharmaceutical development services and commercial outsourcing services, since 1985, including serving as President of Clinical Development from 2010 to 2015, where she was responsible for all Phase I-IV clinical development operations globally and served on the Quintiles Executive Committee. Ms. Stafford also serves as a director of Health Decisions, a full-service contract research organization specializing in clinical studies of therapeutics for women’s health indications, serves as an adjunct professor in Public Health Leadership at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and operates her own third-party consulting business.

John M. Gay

Chief Financial Officer

John M. Gay
Chief Financial Officer

John M. Gay was appointed as our Chief Financial Officer effective September 23, 2020, and also serves as our principal financial officer and Corporate Secretary. He joined Novan in May of 2018 and previously held the position of Senior Director of Finance and Corporate Controller through January 2019, and Vice President, Finance and Corporate Controller from January 2019 until September 23, 2020. Prior to Novan, Mr. Gay held previous director positions, including Director of SEC Reporting, with Valassis Digital Corp. and MaxPoint Inc., from May 2014 to April 2018. Mr. Gay also served as Corporate Controller of Furiex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from June 2010 to May 2014, including from its initial listing on the Nasdaq stock exchange through the execution of an agreement providing for the acquisition of the company by Forest Laboratories, Inc., a subsidiary of Actavis plc, in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $1.1 billion. Prior to joining Furiex Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Mr. Gay served as Audit Senior Manager and in other roles of increasing responsibilities at Deloitte and Arthur Andersen from September 2000 to May 2010. Mr. Gay is a certified public accountant and holds Bachelor’s degrees in Economics and History, and a Master of Accounting degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Carri Geer

SVP, Chief Technology Officer

Carri Geer
SVP, Chief Technology Officer

Carri Geer, Ph.D., leads drug substance, drug product, device and analytical development for Novan’s drug candidates. Additionally, Dr. Geer serves as the technical liaison for collaborative partnerships. Dr. Geer has 10 years of experience in pharmaceutical product development, and a background in analytical and bioanalytical chemistry. During her tenure at Novan, Dr. Geer has been responsible for establishing and growing the analytical capabilities of the company. Prior to joining Novan, Dr. Geer was employed at Merck and bridged the interface between R&D and cGMP analytical testing. Dr. Geer received her Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Tomoko Maeda-Chubachi

SVP, Medical Dermatology

Tomoko Maeda-Chubachi
SVP, Medical Dermatology

Tomoko Maeda-Chubachi, MD, PhD, MBA provides medical input to help drive the strategy, design, and execution of Novan’s development programs. Most recently, she served as senior medical director at GSK, leading clinical development projects for psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, pemphigus, and androgenic alopecia. Prior to GSK, she held clinical and medical affairs roles at Eli Lilly and Company and Pfizer, Inc. Dr. Maeda-Chubachi was an academic physician and dermatologist for ten years before entering the pharmaceutical industry. Dr. Maeda-Chubachi received her MD and Ph.D. from Osaka University.

Board of Directors

Paula Brown Stafford

President, Chief Executive Officer, Chairman

Paula Brown Stafford
President, Chief Executive Officer, Chairman

Paula Brown Stafford is our President and Chief Executive Officer and was appointed as Chairman of our board of directors effective July 28, 2020. Ms. Stafford has served as our President since January 2019. Prior to her appointment as our Chief Executive Officer effective February 2, 2020, Ms. Stafford served as our Chief Operating Officer from January 2019 to February 2020 after serving as our Chief Development Officer from March 2017 to January 2019. Ms. Stafford has served as a member of our board of directors since August 2017. Prior to joining Novan, Ms. Stafford held various roles of increasing importance at Quintiles Transnational Holdings Inc. (now IQVIA Holdings Inc.), a leading multinational provider of biopharmaceutical development services and commercial outsourcing services, since 1985, including serving as President of Clinical Development from 2010 to 2015, where she was responsible for all Phase I-IV clinical development operations globally and served on the Quintiles Executive Committee. Ms. Stafford also serves as a director of Health Decisions, a full-service contract research organization specializing in clinical studies of therapeutics for women’s health indications, serves as an adjunct professor in Public Health Leadership at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and operates her own third-party consulting business.

W. Kent Geer

Lead Independent Director

W. Kent Geer
Lead Independent Director

W. Kent Geer has served as a member of our board of directors since 2015 and as our Lead Independent Director since June 2017. Since 2016, Mr. Geer has served as managing director, finance and investor relations for Med1 Ventures, LLC, an early-stage medical device development company. Since March 2020, Mr. Geer has served as contract Chief Financial Officer for EternaTear, Inc., an early-stage medical product development company. Mr. Geer was an audit partner with Ernst & Young LLP from 1989 to 2011. Beginning in 2012, Mr. Geer served as the chairman of the board of directors of PowerSecure International, Inc. until the successful sale of the company in May 2016. Mr. Geer also serves on the board of governors of North Raleigh Christian Academy.

James L. Bierman

James L. Bierman

Mr. Bierman was appointed to our board of directors on September 23, 2020, in connection with our board of director‘s vote to increase of the size of our board of directors from six to seven directors. Mr. Bierman served as President and Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the board of directors of Owens & Minor, Inc., a Fortune 500 company and a leading distributor of medical and surgical supplies, from September 2014 to June 2015. Previously, he served in various other senior roles at Owens & Minor, including President and Chief Operating Officer from August 2013 to September 2014, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from March 2012 to August 2013, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from April 2011 to March 2012 and Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from June 2007 to April 2011. Earlier in his career, Mr. Bierman served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Quintiles Transnational Corp. (now IQVIA Holdings Inc.). Before joining Quintiles, Mr. Bierman was a partner with Arthur Andersen LLP from 1988 to 1998. Mr. Bierman currently serves on the board of directors of Tenet Healthcare Corporation, a public healthcare services companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange, MiMedX Group, Inc., a public biomedical company listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange, and KL Acquisition Corp., a special purpose acquisition company listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange, and previously served as Independent Lead Director on the board of directors of Team Health Holdings, Inc.

Robert A. Ingram

Robert A. Ingram

Robert A. Ingram has served as a member of our board of directors since 2011 and served as Executive Chairman of our board of directors until his retirement from that role effective July 28, 2020. Since 2007, he has been a general partner at Hatteras Venture Advisors III, LLC, a venture capital firm. Prior to Hatteras Venture Advisors, Mr. Ingram held the roles of Chief Executive Officer and chairman of the board of directors of Glaxo Wellcome plc until his retirement in 2009 when he became the Strategic Advisor to the Chief Executive Officer, GlaxoSmithKline plc. Mr. Ingram retired as Chairman of the board of directors of Cree, Inc., in August 2018, having served on its board of directors for ten years. Mr. Ingram currently serves as chairman of the board of directors of BioCryst Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a public pharmaceutical company listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange, chairman of the board of directors of Black Diamond Therapeutics, Inc., a public precision oncology medicine company listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange, and a member of the board of directors of HBM Healthcare Investments AG, a public Switzerland-based venture capital company listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange.

Robert J. Keegan

Robert J. Keegan

Robert Keegan has served as a member of our board of directors since 2016. Mr. Keegan held the roles of Chief Executive Officer and chairman of the board of directors of Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. from 2003 to 2010. Most recently, he served as the non-executive chairman of the board of directors of Xerox Corporation and was an operating partner of the San Francisco-based private equity firm Friedman, Fleischer & Lowe. From 1972 to 2000, Mr. Keegan held various marketing, financial and managerial posts at Eastman Kodak, except for a two-year period from 1995 to 1997 when he worked as an executive vice president of the Avery Dennison Corporation. Mr. Keegan serves on the board of directors of the Heart Center of Duke University and the Duke Health Board of Visitors. Mr. Keegan is a partner of L&K Properties of North Carolina, LLC.

John Palmour

John Palmour

John Palmour has served as a member of our board of directors since 2010. Since 1987, Dr. Palmour has worked at Cree, Inc., a company he co-founded and for which he currently serves as Vice President and the Chief Technology Officer of the Wolfspeed Division. Dr. Palmour served on Cree’s board of directors from 1995 to 2010. He is currently on the board of directors of Goodzer, Inc., a privately held company focused on local services Internet advertising.

Machelle Sanders

Machelle Sanders

Machelle Sanders joined our board of directors in September 2017 and is a seasoned executive with over 29 years of progressive pharmaceutical and biotechnology experience. Ms. Sanders is currently serving as the Secretary of the N.C. Department of Commerce, appointed by Governor Roy Cooper in February 2021. Prior to her appointment as the Secretary of the N.C. Department of Commerce, Ms. Sanders served as Secretary of the N.C. Department of Administration after being appointed by Governor Cooper in January 2017. In the private sector, Ms. Sanders was most recently responsible for the pharmaceutical operations and technology operational strategy at Biogen, Inc., a multinational biotechnology company, as vice president of quality assurance and vice president of manufacturing and general manager from 2009 to 2015. Ms. Sanders has also held leadership positions in manufacturing, global quality assurance and quality control at Biogen, Inc., Purdue Pharmaceuticals, a pharmaceutical company, and Diosynth-Akzu Nobel, a company that develops and offers manufacturing processes for active ingredients for pharmaceutical companies. Ms. Sanders currently serves on the board of directors of Radius Health, Inc., a public biopharmaceutical company listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange.

Steven D. Skolsky

Steven D. Skolsky

Since January 2010, Steve Skolsky has served as the founding Principal of Expis Partners, a strategic consulting firm to the biotech, pharmaceutical, life science and clinical services community, with a focused expertise in commercialization, marketing strategy, drug development, operations, strategic planning and corporate and business development. From September 2011 to December 2016, Mr. Skolsky held senior executive roles at Quintiles Transnational Holdings Inc. (now IQVIA Holdings Inc.), a leading multinational provider of biopharmaceutical development services and commercial outsourcing service, most recently as Senior Vice President & Managing Director and previously, Senior Vice President and Head of Global Clinical Operations. Prior to joining Quintiles, from August 2007 to December 2009, he served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Sequoia Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and from June 2004 to December 2006, he served as the Chief Executive Officer of Trimeris, Inc. Prior to that, Mr. Skolsky served for more than 20 years at GlaxoSmithKline plc where he held a number of positions including senior leadership roles as Managing Director of GlaxoSmithKline’s operations in Australia and New Zealand and Senior Vice President, Global Product Strategy and Clinical Development.

Scientific Advisors

Novan’s current Scientific Advisors are key opinion leaders with broad expertise across therapeutic areas. Novan has recruited these leading and well-respected physicians to provide medical advice and drug development insight to the company’s senior leadership team and board of directors. Additional experts will be added as appropriate to support new areas of research and development.

Our People

Our People

Brian Berman, MD, PhD

Antiviral

Dr. Brian Berman is professor emeritus of dermatology and cutaneous surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He is vice president of both the American Academy of Dermatology and the American Academy of Dermatology Association, and vice president of the American Dermatological Association. He has held many leadership positions including vice chairman of the Department of Dermatology at The University of California, Davis and chairman of the Department of Dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center of Florida in Miami Beach. He is past president and founder of the National Association of Veterans Affairs Dermatologists and chaired the Dermatology Field Advisory Group for the Department of Veterans Affairs. He also serves on numerous scientific advisory/editorial boards, including the European Journal of Dermatology and the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology.

In addition to caring for patients at Skin and Cancer Associates in Aventura, Florida, Dr. Berman teaches at the Miami Veterans Affairs Medical Center. He also serves as co-director of the Center for Clinical and Cosmetic Research, where he continues his broad-based clinical research program while focusing laboratory investigations on the study of the control of scarring. He has presented at more than 300 dermatologic societies and meetings and has authored more than 250 peer-reviewed scientific and clinical articles, chapters, and books. He is the recipient of the Dean’s Senior Faculty Clinical Research Award from UMMSM, was bestowed the “Scientist of the Year” Award from Sigma Xi, a Science and Research Honor Society, and is included in U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Doctors in America.”

Diane Thiboutot, MD

Acne

Dr. Diane Thiboutot is a board-certified dermatologist who graduated from Penn State College of Medicine and completed her Residency in Dermatology at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. She is currently Director of Clinical and Transitional Science Research Education, Professor of Dermatology, and Vice-Chair for Research for Dermatology at Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine in Hershey, PA.

Dr. Thiboutot and her team are continuously conducting mild, moderate and/or severe acne vulgaris studies to enhance the treatment options for teens and adults who suffer from acne. The studies have involved several combinations of investigational and/or FDA approved topical and/or oral medication. Additionally, her clinical trials office has fully executed research studies applying topical and oral medications, both Investigational and FDA approved products, for rosacea.

She is Co-Director of the Penn State MD/PhD program. Dr. Thiboutot is a reviewer for the National Institute of Health as well as several dermatology journals. She directs an active basic and clinical research program with the support from the NIH and sponsorship from large and small pharmaceutical firms as an independent clinical/scientific consultant. She is a member of the AOA Honor Medical Society She is a member of the AOA Honor Medical Society She is a member of the AOA Honor Medical Society.

Eric Simpson, MD

Inflammatory Skin Disease

Dr. Eric Simpson is a board-certified dermatologist who graduated from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School. He additionally received a master’s degree of Clinical Research from Oregon Health & Science University. Dr. Simpson practices medical dermatology with special interests in chronic inflammatory skin diseases and skin cancer. He is actively involved in clinical research and is currently funded by the National Institutes of Health and industry partners to study new approaches to chronic skin disease treatment and prevention.

Dr. Simpson’s collaborations are global in scope and has been invited to present his research and approach to patient care at international conferences in Europe, North and South America, and Asia. He has published over 80 scientific articles in several high-impact peer-reviewed journals including the New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet. Dr. Simpson supports patient advocacy by serving as the Co-Chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee for the National Eczema Association. He also serves on the Executive Committee of the Harmonizing Outcome Measures in Eczema (HOME)- a volunteer group of patients, providers, and other stakeholders whose mission is to improve the quality of eczema research to better suit the needs of patients and policy-makers.