Leadership

  • Management
  • Board of Directors
James Mackay President & CEO
John Montana SVP, Development
Sara McCutchan Regulatory Affairs Manager
Deanne Reid Director, Operations
Tiba Aynechi Partner, Novo Ventures
Kenneth Harrison Principal, Novo Ventures
James Mackay President & CEO
James Mackay President & CEO

James Mackay, PhD, Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer, has over 25 years of development and commercialization expertise in the pharmaceutical industry, including 6 drug product approvals across multiple therapeutic areas. Prior to founding Aristea, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Ardea Biosciences, Inc., following the company’s acquisition by AstraZeneca in 2012. James was instrumental to setting up an innovative model for Ardea Biosciences that retained the biotech’s independence and accountability for the development of the gout franchise while also developing a synergistic and collaborative relationship with the parent company, AstraZeneca. Prior to Ardea, James held senior executive positions at AstraZeneca where he led the development and commercialization of drugs across a range of therapy areas. and managed significant global functional departments.

James plays a pivotal role in the San Diego Ecosystem and currently sits on the Board and Executive Committee of CONNECT and sits on the Board of BIOCOM. He is a former Board member of the San Diego Economic Development Corporation (EDC). James holds a BS in Genetics and PhD in Medical Genetics from Aberdeen University, Scotland.

John Montana SVP, Development

John Montana, SVP, Development, has a proven track record in advancing discovery and development stage assets in pharmaceutical companies over the last thirty years, including 4 drug product approvals in multiple therapeutic areas. Prior to joining Aristea, he was Vice President, Project Management and Finance for Ardea Biosciences. Following the company’s acquisition by AstraZeneca in 2012, John was a strategic leader and member of the site Executive Team, responsible for leadership and management of portfolio governance and execution level teams, and maintained key interactions with the wider AstraZeneca organization. Prior to Ardea, he was Vice President, Portfolio Management for Anadys Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Roche) and Executive Director and Site Leader, Development Operations for Pfizer, La Jolla. Prior to that, John was Project Leader, Research and Development at Genetic Systems Corporation.

John is currently an Advisory Board Member for BioPharmaPM. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology/Immunology from the University of Washington and a Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification from the Project Management Institute.

Sara McCutchan Regulatory Affairs Manager

Sara McCutchan, Regulatory Affairs Manager, has significant regulatory and quality assurance expertise in global marketing authorizations in diverse markets. Prior to joining Aristea, she played an integral role in the Regulatory Affairs function at Ardea Biosciences where she obtained and managed marketing authorizations in the US, EU, Latin America, Australia, and New Zealand. Sara has proven experience in managing projects and people across a range of providers and licensing partners. In addition to her Regulatory Affairs role at Ardea, Sara spent several years in Quality Assurance where she supported three successful FDA inspections, managed internal quality systems, and employee training.

Sara holds a BS in Cognitive Science from the University of California, San Diego and has a Regulatory Affairs Certification (RAC).

Deanne Reid Director, Operations

DeAnne Reid, Director of Operations, has deep experience in successfully leading Operations across a range of industries. At Aristea, she is accountable for Finance, HR, IT and Administration. Prior to joining Aristea, she led administrative planning for all functional areas at Ardea Biosciences and managed specific projects including FDA Advisory Committee preparation and two successful Business Development deals. Prior to joining Ardea, she held administrative and operations roles at Genentech, The Advantage Network and Tang Capital Management.

Tiba Aynechi Partner, Novo Ventures

Tiba joined Novo Ventures (US) Inc. in San Francisco, California in 2010. She is a member of the Board of Directors of AnaptysBio Inc., Arcellx Inc., Nkarta, Inc., Cianna Medical Inc., iRhythm Technologies Inc., Battersea, and Spruce Biosciences. Previously, she was a board member of Thesan Pharmaceuticals Inc. Tiba has more than 10 years of combined research and banking experience in life sciences that spans various therapeutic areas and technology platforms. Prior to joining Novo Ventures (US) Inc., Tiba was a Director with Burrill & Company where she has completed regional and cross-border M&A, licensing, and financing transactions for biotech and large pharmaceutical companies.

Tiba received her PhD from the Graduate Group in Biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco where her research involved developing computational methods for drug discovery. She has an undergraduate degree in physics from the University of California, Irvine. Tiba is also a published author of scientific articles and book chapters in the area of rational drug design.

Kenneth Harrison Principal, Novo Ventures

Ken joined Novo Ventures (US) Inc. in San Francisco, California in 2015.

Ken brings experience as a Senior Market Planning Manager at Genentech, where he helped guide strategic decision making for the Ophthalmology and HER2 franchises. Prior to Genentech, Ken worked as a management consultant at L.E.K. Consulting and as the Entrepreneurship Program Manager at QB3/Mission Bay Capital, where he helped create new programs to launch and support life sciences companies in the Bay Area.

Ken studied cellular lipid storage and metabolism as an A.P. Giannini Foundation Fellow at the J. David Gladstone Institutes, earned a PhD in Pharmacology from Yale University, and has a BS in Molecular Biology from Texas Tech University, where he was a Howard Hughes Medical Institute undergraduate research fellow.

James Mackay President & CEO

James Mackay, PhD, Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer, has over 25 years of development and commercialization expertise in the pharmaceutical industry, including 6 drug product approvals across multiple therapeutic areas. Prior to founding Aristea, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Ardea Biosciences, Inc., following the company’s acquisition by AstraZeneca in 2012. James was instrumental to setting up an innovative model for Ardea Biosciences that retained the biotech’s independence and accountability for the development of the gout franchise while also developing a synergistic and collaborative relationship with the parent company, AstraZeneca. Prior to Ardea, James held senior executive positions at AstraZeneca where he led the development and commercialization of drugs across a range of therapy areas. and managed significant global functional departments.

James plays a pivotal role in the San Diego Ecosystem and currently sits on the Board and Executive Committee of CONNECT and sits on the Board of BIOCOM. He is a former Board member of the San Diego Economic Development Corporation (EDC). James holds a BS in Genetics and PhD in Medical Genetics from Aberdeen University, Scotland.