About Us


Led by CEO and Founder Peter B. Heifetz, Ph.D., and Chairman Cam Garner, the OrPro team has brought multiple therapeutics through to commercialization and founded and grown through exit over a dozen public and private companies.

  • Peter B. Heifetz, Ph.D. Founder, President and CEO Read More

    Peter Heifetz, Ph.D. has over 25 years senior R&D management and discovery/development experience in biotech and biopharma focused on the IP – R&D – business interface and has held chief scientific officer and corporate development positions at venture-backed companies Rincon Pharmaceuticals Inc, GreenFuel Technologies, and ERA Biotech SA. Dr. Heifetz began his industry career at Ciba-Geigy Biotechnology Research in RTP, North Carolina and held positions of increasing responsibility with Novartis Corporation (NYSE:NVS) and the Novartis Research Foundation, then transitioned to the global life sciences company Syngenta Corporation (NYSE:SYT) after its spinout from Novartis. At Syngenta Dr. Heifetz led world-wide R&D for Syngenta Biopharma and was head of consumer health at the Syngenta Torrey Mesa Research Institute (TMRI) in San Diego prior to becoming a fellow at Diversa Corporation (NASDAQ:DVSA) following its merger with TMRI. Dr. Heifetz received BS, MS and PhD degrees from Duke University with concentration in genetics and biochemical engineering, and earned a certificate in innovation management from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is inventor or co-inventor on over 100 issued US and international patents and published patent applications and has authored over two dozen peer-reviewed scientific publications.

  • Jacqueline Johnson, Ph.D. BoD, Dev. Planning Read More

    Marie Jacqueline (Jacki) Johnson, Ph.D. is a seasoned entrepreneur with over 30 years experience in the biotechnology industry. She was a founder of biotechnology companies FeRx Inc. and Signal Pharmaceuticals, and was a key member of Amylin Pharmaceuticals’ original scientific team. Dr. Johnson has a proven track record of building solid management teams and leading organizations with capabilities covering the full breadth of drug development including finance, business development, R&D, cGMP manufacturing, regulatory and global clinical development. Dr. Johnson served as chairperson of Rincon Pharmaceuticals, Inc and president, chief executive officer and director of FeRx. She recently cofounded Sydnexis Inc. and serves as chief operating officer.  Dr. Johnson received her Ph.D. in genetics from Stanford School of Medicine and completed her post-doctoral training at the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences.

  • Hans Kocher, Ph.D. CMC Read More

    Hans (Hausi) Kocher, Ph.D. is a senior pharmaceutical executive and researcher with over 30 years experience specializing in biologic drug discovery/development and protein manufacturing including oversight of external CMOs/CDMOs. Dr. Kocher headed the biomolecules production unit for Sandoz/Novartis Pharmaceuticals in Basel, Switzerland and recently retired from Novartis as executive director, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research. Prior to joining Sandoz Pharmaceuticals in 1986 he was laboratory director for protein chemistry at Roche Pharmaceuticals in Basel. Dr. Kocher earned his Ph.D. from the ETH in Zurich Switzerland and conducted postdoctoral research at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla CA prior to taking a faculty position at the University of Geneva. In addition to his role at OrPro Dr. Kocher held an adjunct faculty position at the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.

  • Caryn Petersen Regulatory Advisor Read More

    Ms. Caryn Peterson has over 30 years of pharmaceutical industry experience including research and development, regulatory affairs, and operations with an emphasis on global regulatory affairs for small molecules, peptide therapeutics, and biologics. She is a co-founder of the consulting firm DSC Associates specializing in regulatory, preclinical and clinical strategies designed to streamline product development. Ms. Peterson has served as acting VP of regulatory affairs for three bio-pharmaceutical companies with late stage clinical products in oncology, fibrosis, and inflammation and served as Vice President of regulatory affairs at Ascenta Therapeutics where she led the global regulatory strategy for the development of their lead product AT-101 in advanced cancers. Prior to co-founding DSC she served as VP regulatory affairs at FeRx Inc. where as a member of the executive team she was responsible for the development and execution of global nonclinical, clinical and regulatory strategies for the company’s platform technology and mid-clinical stage lead compound. Ms. Peterson joined FeRx following eight years at Amylin Pharmaceuticals where she held senior managerial positions in both pharmaceutical development and regulatory affairs and was involved in the early discovery and subsequent clinical development of the marketed peptide therapeutic pramlintide (Symlin®) for Type 1 diabetes mellitus. Prior to joining Amylin she held scientific positions at Hybritech Inc. where her work focused on humanized monoclonal antibody conjugates for the treatment of cancer. Ms. Peterson has extensive experience in drug development and interaction with health authorities in the US, Europe and emerging markets.

  • Mitchell Rosner, Ph.D. QA/QC and Pharma Development Read More

    Mitchel Rosner, Ph.D. has more than 25 years’ industry experience in pharmaceutics, analytical chemistry and quality. He has authored submissions to health authorities in multiple countries, built quality systems, led laboratory pre-approval inspections, and has contributed to approved products Rituxan®, Zevalin®, Ranexa®, Lexiscan®, Exubera®, and Tobi Podhaler®. Dr. Rosner began his industrial career at IDEC Pharmaceuticals (now Biogen) and has led quality control and analytics for CV Therapeutics (now Gilead Sciences), Nektar Therapeutics, Novartis (San Carlos) and Algenol Biotechnology. More recently he headed quality at Synthetic Genomics and has a part-time role as VP of quality at Aridis Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Rosner received his Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Toxicology from the University of Arizona and holds several professional certifications in quality. He is an inventor on multiple patents and serves as a board member of IPAC-RS.

  • Jeffrey Tepper, Ph.D., DABT, DSP Preclinical and Toxicology Read More

    Jeffrey Tepper, Ph.D., DABT, DSP is a board-certified preclinical research and development  toxicologist with over 30 years of experience in the successful transitioning of early drug concepts from animal pharmacology through GLP toxicology and into clinical studies. As a pharmacology and toxicology consultant Dr. Tepper has helped more than 30 companies advance their research compounds towards clinical development and into IND and NDA/BLA–enabling studies. In his prior industry career he helped bring to market the blockbuster therapeutics Pulmozyme®, Raptiva®, and Xolair®, holding roles as senior scientist at Genentech, director of pharmacology at Bayer Biotechnology, VP of pharmacology/toxicology at Catalyst Biosciences, and co-founder and senior director pharmacology/toxicology at Aerovance Inc. Dr. Tepper is an expert in preclinical FDA regulatory requirements and GLP including inflammatory/autoimmune, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, ophthalmology, coagulation, neurology and dermatology indications using recombinant and engineered proteins, antibodies, oligonucleotides, small molecules, peptides, PEGylated molecules and drug device combinations. He is the author of over 60 peer reviewed publications and book chapters and is a member of the American College of Toxicology, the American Thoracic Society, the International Society of Aerosols in Medicine, the Safety Pharmacology Society, the Society of Toxicology, and is past president and board member of the Northern California Society of Toxicology.

  • Ken Wilke Strategy and Operations Read More

    Ken Wilke, MBA, is a seasoned R&D Strategy & Operations professional with over 30 years of biopharma industry experience, including roles at J&J, BMS, and Merck as well as experience as an independent consultant.  At J&J, Mr. Wilke was responsible for capital projects and strategic initiatives with JLABS, the company’s biotech incubator platform.  Previously, as Director, Translational Medicine Strategy & Operations at Bristol-Myers Squibb, he provided strategic direction for the launch and development of a new Translational Medicine division in R&D.  In this role he built operational infrastructure and provided oversight for headcount, budget, governance, scientific reviews, and business development activities.  Prior to BMS, Mr. Wilke served 25 years at Merck in various roles spanning global capital project engineering and R&D strategy & operations.  In his final position at Merck as Director of Clinical Pharmacogenomics, he directed clinical specimen biorepository operations and managed projects supporting pharmacogenomics and biomarker research.  In 2014, Mr. Wilke founded BioStrategy Solutions, an independent consulting company with clients ranging from startup biopharma services companies to large multinational pharmas.  Mr. Wilke received a B.S. degree in Engineering from Stanford University and an MBA from Lehigh University.