Brad Wilken is deputy director for business development and licensing for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he covers the foundation’s Global Health portfolio. In this role, he oversees work with the foundation’s Program Strategy Teams to identify and evaluate potential strategic business partners and licensing opportunities that will help execute and advance the PST strategies. Among his accomplishments are leading the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator and establishing the Gates Medical Research Institute.
Before joining the foundation, Brad spent nearly two decades working in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries for Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Genentech and Eli Lilly. He held senior positions in project management and clinical operations.
Brad earned a Master of Public Health from Columbia University, a Master of Business Administration from Butler University and a Bachelor of Science in human biology from the University of Kansas.
Barbara Stephenson is vice provost for global affairs and chief global officer at UNC-Chapel Hill, where she advances a pan-university global strategy to enhance Carolina’s global reach, impact and reputation.
Prior to joining UNC, Barbara served as a U.S. Foreign Service officer for more than three decades. She was appointed U.S. Ambassador to Panama in 2008 and later became the first woman to serve as deputy ambassador and acting ambassador at the U.S. Embassy in London. As deputy senior advisor to the secretary of state and deputy coordinator for Iraq from 2006 to 2008, Barbara received the State Department’s Distinguished Honor Award for developing and implementing the civilian surge, the largest deployment of civilians to a war zone since the Vietnam War. From 2001 to 2004, as the American Consul General in Belfast, Northern Ireland, she helped renew support for the Good Friday Agreement that brought an end to decades of violence.
Barbara served as president of the American Foreign Service Association and dean at the Foreign Service Institute.
She earned a Doctor of Philosophy, Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts in English literature from the University of Florida.
Tom Shanahan serves as chief legal officer for UNC Health. He previously served as system vice president and deputy general counsel for UNC Health and as acting chief administrative officer for UNC-Chapel Hill during 2021 and 2022.
Prior to joining UNC Health, Tom served as senior vice president for Legal, Risk, and Compliance and general counsel for the 17-campus UNC System, where he advised the System president and Board of Governors and oversaw systemwide functions in audit, risk management, compliance, and campus safety and emergency operations. His UNC System practice included work on health affairs matters involving UNC Health and the UNC School of Medicine, as well as the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University and its clinical partner, now known as ECU Health.
Tom joined the UNC System from the U.S. Department of Labor, where he served in various leadership positions, including deputy regional director in the Employee Benefits Security Administration.
Tom is an adjunct professor at the UNC School of Law, where he teaches higher education law. He received his Juris Doctor from the University of Georgia and a Bachelor of Science in human development from Cornell University.
Lydia Ogden leads R&D policy and engagement for Johnson & Johnson’s Global Public Health division. She is a proven public- and private-sector leader with three decades of experience in predicting and managing health system change and enabling impactful health partnerships spanning the globe.
Before joining J&J, Lydia directed U.S. and ex-U.S. vaccines policy, partnerships and government relations for Merck (MSD outside the U.S. and Canada) and led company-wide strategic engagement with international organizations, foundations, institutions and industry associations.
She also worked at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where she led domestic and international HIV/AIDS policy and data-driven prevention programs, implemented PEPFAR (the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), served as the agency’s deputy chief of staff for policy, and headed the Office of Health Reform following passage of the Affordable Care Act.
Lydia earned a Doctor of Philosophy in health services research and health policy from Emory University; a Master of Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School; a Master of Arts in English language and literature from Vanderbilt University; and a Bachelor of Science in English language and literature from Middle Tennessee State University.
Nate Knuffman is vice chancellor for finance and operations and chief financial officer at UNC-Chapel Hill. His responsibilities include oversight of campuswide financial planning and budgeting; treasury and risk management; facilities planning, construction and operations; real estate development; purchasing; auxiliary services; transportation and parking; and energy services.
Before joining Carolina, Nate served as vice president for financial planning and analysis at the UNC System Office, where he was a member of the senior team advising the UNC System president and supporting the UNC Board of Governors in finance and business matters. He also served as the deputy director of the N.C. Office of State Budget and Management.
Nate earned a Master of Public Management at the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Arts in economics and political science from Illinois Wesleyan University.
Dr. Perrin Jones is an anesthesiologist and partner with East Carolina Anesthesia Associates and a member of the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees. Perrin served as a member of the North Carolina House of Representatives from October 2019 through December 2020 and was in the U.S. Navy Reserve from 2000 to 2008.
He is a member of the American Society of Anesthesiologists and was President of the North Carolina Society of Anesthesiologists.
Perrin completed a residency in anesthesiology at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire. He earned a Doctor of Medicine from Wake Forest University School of Medicine and a Bachelor of Arts from UNC-Chapel Hill.
Andy Johns is senior associate vice chancellor for research at UNC-Chapel Hill, where he oversees strategic planning, research policy, infrastructure and operations, and elements of regulatory compliance. Andy focuses heavily on the complexities associated with biomedical research, addressing challenges and barriers to growth of the research enterprise, both from a logistics and policy perspective. He has led university-wide efforts to plan for new academic and research initiatives in clinical research, data science and data analytics, among others. Andy oversees the offices of Sponsored Research, Clinical Research Support & Compliance, Animal Care & Use, and Research Information Systems.
He has served in higher education for over two decades in areas of research, financial and information technology administration. Prior to his current role, Andy served as director of UNC’s Office of Research Information Systems and also held the role of director of IT Services for UNC’s finance division.
Andy earned a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry from UNC-Chapel Hill.
Laurent Fraisse is research & development director for the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative, where he drives scientific strategy and oversees all research and clinical activities worldwide. Founded by Médecins Sans Frontières, the World Health Organization and five international research institutions, DNDi discovers, develops and delivers new treatments for neglected patients around the world.
Laurent is an experienced biotechnology and pharmaceutical executive and a leading expert in infectious diseases. Prior to joining DNDi, he led R&D for large pharmaceutical firms and served as chair of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) Strategic Governing Group dedicated to infectious diseases.
Laurent was executive vice president for infectious diseases at Evotec, where he focused on accelerating the infectious disease research pipeline development and initiating new open innovation R&D initiatives. Before that, during 20 years at Sanofi, he rose to become vice president for infectious disease R&D, addressing medical needs in bacterial, parasitic and viral related infections.
Laurent earned a Doctor of Philosophy in biotechnology from the Institut National Polytechnique in Toulouse, France, and graduated from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure Agronomique in Rennes with a specialty in biochemistry.
Chris Clemens is provost and chief academic officer of UNC-Chapel Hill. The Jaroslav Folda Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy, he joined the university as an accomplished astrophysicist in 1998.
Before becoming provost in 2022, Chris held many leadership roles at Carolina, serving as chair of the physics and astronomy department, senior associate dean for natural sciences and senior associate dean for research and innovation in the College of Arts and Sciences, and director of UNC’s Institute for Convergent Science.
His research interests include stellar seismology, interacting binaries, time-resolved photometry and spectroscopy, and astronomical instrumentation.
Chris held postdoctoral fellowships at Iowa State University and Caltech and earned a Doctor of Philosophy in astronomy from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Science in astrophysics from the University of Oklahoma.
Richard Burr is principal policy advisor and chair of DLA Piper’s Health Policy Strategic Consulting practice within the global legal firm’s Regulatory and Government Affairs practice group. He provides policy advice, strategic consulting and a wide range of related services to life sciences and healthcare clients navigating a rapidly changing policy landscape and significant regulatory and political uncertainty.
Prior to joining DLA Piper, Richard served nearly three decades in federal service — five terms in the House of Representatives and three terms in the Senate. He was chairman and a senior member of the Senate’s Select Committee on Intelligence and served as an influential member of the Finance Committee for 12 years.
Richard is widely known as one of the foremost government authorities in healthcare and life sciences policy. His many legislative accomplishments include the 1997 FDA Modernization Act and the Pandemic All Hazards Preparedness Act, which created the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and was critical in the rapid development of the COVID-19 pandemic vaccine.
Richard earned a Bachelor of Arts in communication from Wake Forest University.