Fred Hassan, Managing Director, Warburg Pincus with Brent Saunders, Chairman, President & CEO, Allergan

Each year, The Conference Forum holds a private event for senior level R&D executives from mid to large pharma and biotech companies to address timely and relevant issues impacting R&D decision-making. The 2017 theme was on demonstrating value. The agenda was made up of 20 topic sessions with a speaking faculty of 50 presenters who were mostly from senior R&D leadership with CEOs, investors, representatives from the payer community and government.

We were delighted to have Allergan’s Chief of R&D, Dr David Nicholson as co-chair with Dr Bahija Jallal, EVP, MedImmune and the opening keynote was from Fred Hassan, Managing Director, Healthcare, Warburg Pincus. The 2017 keynotes also included Dr Moncef Slaoui, Chairman of Vaccines, GSK, Joseph Papa, Chairman of the Board, CEO, Valeant Pharmaceuticals and Brent Saunders, MBA, Chairman, President and CEO, Allergen.


We were pleased to welcome for the first time the following executives to the R&D Leadership Summit speaking faculty:

Jeffrey Berkowitz, EVP, Optum

Marc Boutin, JD, CEO, The National Health Council

Robert Califf, MD, Commissioner, FDA

Ron Cohen, MD, President & CEO, Acorda Therapeutics

Steven Frank, Vice-Chairman, Co-Head Global Healthcare, JP Morgan

Zhi Hong, PhD, SVP, Infectious Disease Therapy Area Unit, GSK

Hayato Ishida, General Manager of Project Facilitation and Head of Development Project Management, Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation

Monika Lessl, PhD, VP, Head of Corporate Innovation R&D, Bayer AG

Jeremy Levin, Phil, MB BChir, CEO, Ovid Therapeutics

Jan Lundberg, PhD, EVP, Science and Technology and President, Lilly Labs, Eli Lilly & Company

Mathai Mammen, MD, PhD, SVP, Cardiovascular, Metabolic Diseases, Immunology and Oncology, Merck

Steve Miller, MD, MBASenior Vice President & Chief Medical Officer, Express Scripts

Diego Miralles, MD, President, Adaptive Therapeutics

Eric Olson, PhD, CSO, Syros Pharmaceuticals

Joseph Papa, Chairman of the Board, CEO, Valeant

Vivek Ramaswamy, Founder and CEO, Roivant Sciences and Axovant Sciences

Alise Reicin, MDGlobal Head of Clinical Research, EMD Serono

Roslyn Schneider, MD, Global Patient Affairs Lead, Pfizer Inc

Greg SimonDirector, Biden Cancer Initiative, Former Executive Director, White House Cancer Moonshot Task Force

Kent Thoelke, EVP, Scientific and Medical Affairs, Safety and Commercialization Services, PRA Health Sciences

Akshay Vaishnaw, MD, PhD, EVP R&D, Chief Medical Officer, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals

Rupert Vessey, MA, BM BCh, FRCP, DPhil, President, Research and Early Development, Celgene

Also new to the program for the first time, we welcomed a non-pharma VIP guest keynote from Boeing who was interviewed by our 2016 keynote, Lars Rebien Sorensen, President and CEO, Novo Nordisk.

Many thanks to the executive team at PRA for their support and to Dr Thomas KoestlerExecutive Director Health CareVatera Health Care Partners for his guidance as well as the entire speaking faculty who brought their vast experience together to share their vision and strategy in:

  • Value, Coverage and Reimbursement
  • Pricing
  • Creating & Capturing the Value of Innovation
  • Regulatory Approval and Market Access Management
  • Competing R&D Philosophies on Culture and Leadership
  • New FDA Initiatives
  • R&D Investment and Priorities
  • Patient Centricity Impact on R&D Strategy
  • Portfolio Management
  • Outsourcing
  • Talent
  • R&D Trends on Clinical Trial Operations


Bahija2men - RDL2016

Dr Bahija Jallal, EVP, MedImmune, Genghis Lloyd-Harris, Partner, Abingworth & Francesco De Rubertis, Partner Medicxi Ventures

The format of the conference was a combination of presentations, interviews and panel discussions. The Summit provided plenty of networking opportunities, including breakfast, luncheons, welcome reception, the annual dinner and networking breaks.

The R&D Leadership Summit was open only to senior level R&D executives from clinical stage pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device and vaccine companies.

Our audience was as much a part of the event as our speaking faculty. Our ultimate goal was to foster a Summit environment that inspires positive change to advance R&D and to provide support for the leaders behind the movement. For questions about the R&D Leadership Summit, please contact Valerie@tcfllc.org or Jennifer Moran at Jennifer@tcfllc.org.


Valerie Bowling New


Valerie Bowling
Executive Director


Jennifer Moran B&W1


Jennifer Moran
Project Manager



Meredith Sands
Executive Director, Business Development


*Please note the leadership R&D program for emerging biotechs is held in Boston each May and is called the CMO Summit.

Click here to learn more about the CMO Summit.


  • "One of the best conferences and a great group of leaders and organizers and all done with such thought put into the agenda and topics."

    - Mark Currie, Ironwood Pharma