MEET THE TEAM

Our Leadership Team and Board of Directors have extensive, proven experience in product development, clinical trials, regulatory affairs, business and commercial development, finance, and intellectual property management.

Founder, President,
Chief Executive Officer:
A physician-scientist, Dr. Niklason’s groundbreaking work in vascular and lung engineering has made her a world leader in regenerative medicine. She is a member of the National Academies of Engineering and Medicine, and serves on the advisory board of Trestle Biotherapeutics.

Chief Financial Officer, Chief Corporate Development Officer, Treasurer:
Mr. Sander has served as Chief Financial Officer of six other life science companies during both private and public phases, including two companies dual-listed in the U.S. and international markets.

Chief Operating Officer:
Dr. Prichard’s overall responsibility is translating the company’s innovative mission, vision and strategies into actionable activities. She brings over 20 years of strong leadership experience in the fields of tissue engineering, extracellular matrix biology, and biological response to implantable biomaterials.

Chief Medical Officer:
Dr. Parikh is an experienced medical professional with nearly two decades of biopharmaceutical experience leading teams across Clinical Strategy and Development, Medical Affairs and Patient Safety. After receiving his medical degree from the Topiwala National Medical College in Mumbai, India, he completed his post-graduate training in the US in internal medicine and pediatrics, followed by a clinical fellowship in endocrinology at the NIH.

Chief Commercial Officer:
Mr. Scheessele is a commercial leader with over 20 years of experience creating and growing businesses in the vascular and regenerative medicine markets. He is responsible for providing leadership, direction, and strategic vision to drive the commercial launch of the HAV in its initial vascular indications and follow-on market expansion.

Chief Regulatory Officer:
Cindy Cao, Ph.D., has over twenty years of drug discovery and development experience in pharmaceutical and biotech companies and has extensive expertise in global and US regulatory strategy and policy on biologics. Dr. Cao holds a B.S. in Genetics from Fudan University, a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from the University of New Mexico, and completed an NIH-sponsored post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Utah.

Executive Vice President, Business Strategy & People:
Ms. Osborne has over 20 years of Human Resources, Leadership, and Organizational Development experience across Life Sciences industry. Osborne’s management experience inside and outside of the Human Resources function provides for the ability to balance business needs with management and people needs to expertly craft and implement People strategies that ensure successful business outcomes.

Senior VP of Quality:
Mr. Alterson has over 20 years’ experience in the biopharmaceutical, vaccine, and cell/gene therapy industries while working at both clinical stage and commercial stage companies in roles of increasing responsibility across both Quality Control and Quality Assurance.  He has led multiple successful health authority inspections including PAIs.  

Co-Founder, Executive Vice President Corporate Development:
Dr. Blum has spent over 20 years combining her scientific technical expertise with bioengineered tissue development to build Humacyte’s novel biotechnology platform and bring potential therapeutic products to market. Her leadership focuses on pairing the strategic direction of the organization with the overall corporate communications and culture of the business.

Senior Executive Regulatory Strategic Advisor:
Mr. Tente has over 30 years of experience in the process development and manufacturing of biotherapeutic products as well as cell, gene and tissue engineering therapies for research-stage and clinical-stage companies. Tente has led teams involved with the translation of academic biomedical research to large-scale manufacturing under FDA Good Manufacturing Practices compliance.

A physician-scientist, Dr. Niklason’s groundbreaking work in vascular and lung engineering has made her a world leader in regenerative medicine. She is a member of the National Academies of Engineering and Medicine and serves on the advisory board of Trestle Biotherapeutics.

Laura E. Niklason, M.D., Ph.D.

Founder, President,
Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Sander has served as Chief Financial Officer of six other life science companies during both private and public phases, including two companies dual-listed in the U.S. and international markets.

Dale Sander

Chief Financial Officer, Chief Corporate Development Officer, Treasurer

Dr. Prichard's overall responsibility is translating the company’s innovative mission, vision and strategies into actionable activities. She brings over 20 years of strong leadership experience in the fields of tissue engineering, extracellular matrix biology, and biological response to implantable biomaterials.

Heather Prichard, Ph.D.

Chief Operating Officer

Dr. Parikh is an experienced medical professional with nearly two decades of biopharmaceutical experience leading teams across Clinical Strategy and Development, Medical Affairs, and Patient Safety. After receiving his medical degree from the Topiwala National Medical College in Mumbai, India, he completed his post-graduate training in the US in internal medicine and pediatrics, followed by a clinical fellowship in endocrinology at the NIH.

Shamik Parikh, M.D.

Chief Medical Officer
Mr. Scheessele is a commercial leader with over 20 years of experience creating and growing businesses in the vascular and regenerative medicine markets. He is responsible for providing leadership, direction, and strategic vision to drive the commercial launch of the HAV in its initial vascular indications and follow-on market expansion.

BJ Scheessele

Chief Commercial Officer

Cindy Cao, Ph.D., has over twenty years of drug discovery and development experience in pharmaceutical and biotech companies and has extensive expertise in global and US regulatory strategy and policy on biologics. Dr. Cao holds a B.S. in Genetics from Fudan University, a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from the University of New Mexico, and completed an NIH-sponsored post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Utah.

Cindy Cao, Ph.D. ​

Chief Regulatory Officer

Ms. Osborne has over 20 years of Human Resources, Leadership, and Organizational Development experience across Life Sciences industry. Osborne’s management experience inside and outside of the Human Resources function provides for the ability to balance business needs with management and people needs to expertly craft and implement People strategies that ensure successful business outcomes.

Sabrina Osborne

Executive Vice President,
Business Strategy & People

Mr. Alterson has over 20 years’ experience in the biopharmaceutical, vaccine, and cell/gene therapy industries while working at both clinical stage and commercial stage companies in roles of increasing responsibility across both Quality Control and Quality Assurance. He has led multiple successful health authority inspections including PAIs.

Harold Alterson

Senior VP of Quality


Dr. Blum has spent over 20 years combining her scientific technical expertise with bioengineered tissue development to build Humacyte’s novel biotechnology platform and bring potential therapeutic products to market. Her leadership focuses on pairing the strategic direction of the organization with the overall corporate communications and culture of the business.

Juliana L. Blum, Ph.D.

Co-Founder, Executive Advisor

Mr. Tente has over 30 years of experience in the process development and manufacturing of biotherapeutic products as well as cell, gene and tissue engineering therapies for research-stage and clinical-stage companies. Tente has led teams involved with the translation of academic biomedical research to large-scale manufacturing under FDA Good Manufacturing Practices compliance.

William Tente, M.S. ​

Senior Executive Regulatory Strategic Advisor

History Defining Milestones

Board of Directors

Kathleen Sebelius

Chair of the Board

Ms. Sebelius is Chair of the Humacyte Board of Directors. Ms. Sebelius is the Chief Executive Officer of Sebelius Resources LLC, which provides strategic advice to private companies, non-profit organizations, higher education institutions, and financial investors. In 2009 she was appointed Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) by President Barack Obama and served in that role until June 2014. Previously. Ms. Sebelius was the Governor of Kansas from 2003 to 2009 and before that she served two terms as the Kansas insurance commissioner and four terms in the Kansas Legislature. Ms. Sebelius currently is on the boards of directors of public companies Devoted Health, Inc., Include Health Inc. and Exact Sciences Corporation. She is a director of the Kaiser Family Foundation, co-chairs the Aspen Institute Health Strategy Group and serves on advisory boards for the Dole Institute of Politics, Solera Health, Out Leadership, the Estée Lauder Foundation, the University of Kansas College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Zipline. Ms. Sebelius holds a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Kansas and a B.A. from Trinity Washington University.

Gordon M. Binder

Mr. Binder was Chief Executive Officer of Amgen, Inc. from 1988 through 2000. He joined Amgen in 1982 as Chief Financial Officer, having previously served as the Chief Financial Officer of System Development Corporation, a computer system and software company, and in financial management positions at Litton Industries and Ford Motor Company. After retiring from Amgen, Mr. Binder founded Coastview Capital LLC, a biotechnology venture capital firm. Mr. Binder currently serves as Chairman of NEUVOGEN, Inc., a private immuno-oncology company. Mr. Binder has also served as the Chairman of BIO, the biotechnology industry trade association, and as Chairman of PHRMA, the pharmaceutical industry trade association. He has served as a member of the board of directors of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the California Institute of Technology, the American Enterprise Institute and Pepperdine University. Mr. Binder is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and is the author of Science Lessons: What the Business of Biotech Taught Me About Management. Mr. Binder holds a B.S. in electrical engineering from Purdue University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School where he was named a Baker Scholar.

Emery N. Brown, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Brown is the Warren M. Zapol Professor of Anaesthesia at Harvard Medical School and the Edward Hood Taplin Professor of Medical Engineering and Computational Neuroscience at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has been on the faculty at Harvard Medical School and MIT since May 1992 and October 2005, respectively. Dr. Brown has also served as an anesthesiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital since May 1992. Dr. Brown currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Guggenheim Foundation, the Board of Trustees of the Simmons Foundation, the National Academy of Medicine Forum on Neurological Disorders and the board of PASCALL Systems, Inc., an early-stage medical device startup. Dr. Brown is a member of the National Academy of Inventors, the National Academy of Medicine, the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering. Dr. Brown holds a B.A. in applied mathematics from Harvard College, an M.D. from Harvard Medical School, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in statistics from Harvard University.  

Michael T. Constantino

Mr. Constantino is a retired Ernst & Young LLP assurance partner who served in the Research Triangle Park region of North Carolina for over 30 years. From 2009 to 2012, he served as the Office Managing Partner for the combined Raleigh/Greensboro office of Ernst & Young with over 200 employees and he was personally responsible for leading a practice that included assurance, advisory and tax services focused on public and privately held entrepreneurial companies.  Currently, Mr. Constantino serves as a member of the Board and the Chairman of the Audit Committee of 9 Meters Biopharma, Inc., a Nasdaq-listed clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. He is a past Chair of the Board for the NC State University Foundation and a member of the Board of The Green Chair Project.  He serves on the Advisory Board for CREO, Inc., an RTP-based consultancy focused on growth management and data transformation services. Mr. Constantino holds a B.A. in both Accounting and Business Management from NC State University and is a North Carolina Certified Public Accountant.  Accounting and Business Management from NC State University and is a North Carolina Certified Public Accountant, or CPA. Mr. Constantino is serves as Chair of Humacyte’s Audit Committee.

Brady W. Dougan

Mr. Dougan founded and has served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Exos Financial, LLC, since July 2015.  Exos focuses on areas of institutional finance where technology, automation and analytics create maximum value.  From May 2007 through June 2015, Mr. Dougan was Chief Executive Officer and a Member of the Executive Board of Credit Suisse Group AG and Credit Suisse AG, steering the bank through the financial crisis of 2008 and various reforms and changes in the banking industry. Prior to that time, Mr. Dougan served in various leadership positions at Credit Suisse. Mr. Dougan currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the University of Chicago. Mr. Dougan holds a B.A. in Economics and an M.B.A. in Finance from the University of Chicago.

C. Bruce Green, M.D.

Dr. Green was the 20th Surgeon General of the U.S. Air Force, overseeing all Air Force medical activities, including a staff of over 42,000 people assigned to 75 medical facilities worldwide.  In that role he was responsible for advising the Secretary of the Air Force, the Air Force Chief of Staff and the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs. He has commanded four hospitals and, as command surgeon for three major commands, he planned joint medical responses for operations Desert Thunder and Desert Fox and he oversaw aeromedical evacuation for operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. Ater 34 years of service he retired from the Air Force in 2012 with the rank of Lieutenant General.  Following his retirement from the military, General Green joined Deloitte Federal Consulting where he served as Director and Chief Medical Officer from 2013 until his retirement from Deloitte in 2022.  General Green completed residency training in both family practice and in aerospace medicine and holds a B.S. from the University of Wisconsin–Parkside, an M.D. from the Medical College of Wisconsin, and an M.P.H. from the Harvard School of Public Health.  

Laura E. Niklason, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Niklason is the founder of Humacyte and has served as its President and CEO since 2020.  Dr. Niklason served Humacyte as a senior scientist from 2004 through 2020. Dr. Niklason has served as an adjunct professor at Yale University since November 2020 and previously was the Nicholas M. Greene Professor of Anesthesiology and Biomedical Engineering at Yale University from 2006 to November 2020. She was inducted into the National Academy of Inventors in 2014 and was elected to the National Academy of Medicine and the National Academy of Engineering in 2015 and 2020, respectively. Dr. Niklason is currently on the board of directors of Self Study Inc., a private learning optimization technology company. Dr. Niklason holds a Ph.D. in Biophysics from the University of Chicago and an M.D. from the University of Michigan. Dr. Niklason completed residency training in anesthesia and intensive care unit medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital and completed post-doctoral scientific training at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the laboratory of Dr. Robert Langer.

Todd M. Pope

Mr. Pope is a Partner in Revival Healthcare Capital. Since 2021, he has served as Vice Chair (formerly President and CEO) of WellAir Group Ltd., a leading clean air solutions company. Prior to its acquisition by WellAir, Mr. Pope served as the Executive Chairman of UV Innovators, LLC, a developer of medical-grade handheld UVC disinfection technology, from 2017 to 2021. From 2008 to 2019, Mr. Pope served as the Chief Executive Officer of TransEnterix, Inc. (now Asensus Surgical, Inc.), a medical device company. He previously served as Global President of Cordis, a multi-billion-dollar division within Johnson & Johnson’s medical device business, and he served 14 years in various management roles at Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon Endo-Surgery Division and Boston Scientific, where he rose to Vice President, Global Sales, and Marketing, Neurovascular Division.  He is currently Chairman of AdvaMed ACCEL and is a member of the Boards of Directors of WELL.Co, a private digital health company and Swiss company Distalmotion. Time Magazine named Mr. Pope one of the “50 most influential people in healthcare 2018.” Mr. Pope holds a B.A. from the University of North Carolina. 

Diane Seimetz, Ph.D.

Dr. Seimetz has 23 years of international drug development, partnering and managerial experience in the biopharmaceutical industry. In 2013 she co-founded Biopharma Excellence and was its CEO from December 2013 until June 2021. Biopharma Excellence was acquired by the PharmaLex Group in September 2020. Since July 2021, Dr. Seimetz has served as Principal Consultant at the PharmaLex Group. She currently serves on the board of directors of Cumulus Oncology, as a member of the decision board of the Helmholtz Validation Fund, and as an advisory board member of the Aglaia Oncology Fund. Dr. Seimetz began her professional career in 1999 with the Fresenius Healthcare Group and served as Executive Vice President of its biotech division and Chief Scientific Officer with responsibility for international drug development from 2008 to 2013. Dr. Seimetz holds a degree in pharmaceutical science from the University of Saarland, a master’s degree in drug regulatory affairs from the University of Bonn, and a Ph.D. from the University of Heidelberg, for which her research work was conducted at the German Cancer Research Center and Johns Hopkins University.

Rajiv Shukla

Mr. Shukla has over 20 years of buyouts, equity investments and executive management experience in the healthcare industry. He has served as CEO of 4 publicly listed companies and served as Director on the Boards of 14 companies since 2013. He has conducted over 45 healthcare equity investments including multiple roll-ups/control investments and closed over $65 billion in healthcare acquisitions at Pfizer and over his investment career at Morgan Stanley Investment Management and Citi Venture Capital International. He began his career at the Boston Consulting Group. Mr. Shukla has extensive experience with C-level management, post-merger integration, re-structuring and fundraising with over $500 million in public equity capital raised since 2017. Mr. Shukla graduated with a Bachelors in Pharmaceutics from the Indian Institute of Technology and a Masters in Healthcare Management from Harvard University.

Max Wallace, J.D.

Mr. Wallace is President of Round Table Research, a cancer research company based on research from the University of North Carolina, the University of Florida and Duke University. From 2008 to 2019 Mr. Wallace was CEO of Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure (ABC²), a venture philanthropy organization focused on bringing new brain cancer treatments into the clinic. He previously founded and helped build several other biotech companies, including Trimeris, a public company that brought to market a new class of drugs for the treatment of HIV and other viral diseases; Cogent Neuroscience; Sphinx Pharmaceuticals (now part of Eli Lilly & Company); and SARCO (now part of PPD).  He has served on the Board of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and he co-founded and was President of the North Carolina Bioscience Organization, the industry’s trade organization in North Carolina. He previously served as legal counsel for Duke University Medical Center, as Duke’s Director of Government Relations and as a founding director of Duke Management Company, the University’s asset management company. Mr. Wallace holds a B.A. from Duke University and a J.D. from the University of Florida.

Susan Windham-Bannister, Ph.D.

Dr. Windham-Bannister is President and Chief Executive Officer of Biomedical Growth Strategies, LLC, a strategic advisory firm serving the life sciences and healthcare industries, From 2008 to 2015, Dr. Windham-Bannister served as founding President and CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC), a $1 billion life sciences-dedicated investment initiative. Before MLSC, she was co-founder and Managing Partner of Abt Bio-Pharma Solutions (ABS), leading the firm’s Commercial Strategy Group in developing market access and competitive business strategies for global clients.  Dr. Windham-Bannister serves on the board of directors of public companies Aridis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Histogen. She is the Chair of the National Board of Directors of the Association for Women in Science (AWIS), serves on the board of directors of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and Chairs the board of BioscienceLA, a nonprofit independent innovation catalyst organization. Dr. Windham-Bannister holds a B.A. from Wellesley College and a Ph.D. in Health Policy and Management from the Florence Heller School at Brandeis University. She was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School and a Fellow in the Center for Science and Policy (CSAP) at Cambridge University, Cambridge, England.

Partnerships

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