Discover Koneksa

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The Koneksa Team
Our Leadership
Chris Benko
Chief Executive Officer
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Chris Benko
Chief Executive Officer

Chris Benko has twenty years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, including implementing the operating model for the translational medicine functions of Merck Research Labs. He subsequently held executive roles spanning the company’s research and commercial divisions, as well as positions at the corporate level as head of global talent management. Chris launched Koneksa as an entrepreneur in residence with Merck’s corporate venture capital fund before establishing Koneksa as an independent company.

Elena Izmailova, Ph.D.
Chief Scientific Officer
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Elena Izmailova, Ph.D.
Chief Scientific Officer

Elena Izmailova, Ph.D., leads scientific oversight of strategy and project work at Koneksa. Elena has 25 years of experience in academic and industry research. Her academic appointments include Massey Cancer Center, Children’s Hospital (Boston), Harvard Medical School, and MIT. She worked in various R&D roles at Millennium Pharmaceuticals and Takeda Pharmaceuticals. Elena is a co-founder of the Digital Medicine Society (DiMe) and a member of the Editorial Board of Clinical and Translational Science Journal (ASCPT). Elena has a PhD in Biology; her main scientific interest is clinical biomarker development and validation.

John Wagner, MD, PhD.
Chief Medical Officer
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John Wagner, MD, PhD.
Chief Medical Officer

John A. Wagner, M.D., Ph.D. oversees clinical investment and strategy at Koneksa. With more than 20 years of drug development experience, Dr. Wagner has led more than 150 first-in-human studies and has been instrumental bringing numerous blockbuster programs to market. Prior to joining Koneksa, John was CMO of Cygnal Therapeutics, held senior leadership roles at Takeda and Merck, and was a venture partner at Foresite Capital. In addition, John is Editor-in-Chief of Clinical and Translational Science and an executive committee member of the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health Biomarkers Consortium.

Robert Ellis, Ph.D.
Head of Data Science
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Robert Ellis, Ph.D.
Head of Data Science

Robert Ellis, Ph.D., leads Koneksa’s data sciences team. Robert works with an internal team of algorithm developers, data scientists, and statisticians focused on algorithm development, validation activities, and the development of next-generation digital measures. Robert has a Ph.D. in geophysics and more than ten years of experience in enterprise-technology leadership at the SVP/CTO level.

Vik Shah
President & COO
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Vik Shah
President & COO

Vik has helped guide and scale Koneksa through exponential growth, based on a background of 30 years of experience working in, and leading, healthcare and technology organizations, from startup through IPO.

Matt Cantor
EVP Customer & Product Strategy
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Matt Cantor
EVP Customer & Product Strategy

Matt currently serves as EVP, Customer & Product Strategy. In addition to overseeing all aspects of services related to study execution and customer support, Matt is responsible for strategic alliances and coordinating Koneksa’s product strategy. Matt started his career with Deloitte, advising healthcare and pharmaceutical companies. Matt received his B.S. from Cornell University and M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.

Brittny Adams
VP Finance
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Brittny Adams
VP Finance

Brittny Adams leads Koneksa’s finance team. Throughout her career, she has worked with companies to navigate complex finance and accounting transactions as well as build scalable finance solutions. Prior to joining Koneksa, she served on the leadership team at TrialSpark, Inc. where she led the company’s finance and accounting department. Before TrialSpark, she spent more than ten years at Deloitte serving public and emerging growth clients. During her tenure there, she worked for the U.S. CEO on firm projects related to global strategy, culture and talent, and corporate citizenship. She is a licensed CPA in New York.

Gol Ophir
Head of Corporate Development and Partnerships
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Gol Ophir
Head of Corporate Development and Partnerships

Gol Ophir is responsible for creating new strategic relationships at Koneksa. Gol brings more than twenty years of experience at some of the world’s leading financial institutions, where he managed global technology teams and operations. He has previously served as a divisional COO, a Chief Information Risk Officer at JPMC, and a divisional Chief Risk Officer at Citizens Bank. Prior to joining Koneksa, Gol created and managed innovative relationships for new revenue opportunities, helping to build business development capabilities at both Merck and at Morgan Stanley.

Joe Tyers
Head of Commercial
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Joe Tyers
Head of Commercial

As Head of Commercial at Koneska, Joe brings over 30 years of experience in sales and operations management concentrated in clinical development technology for the biopharmaceutical industry.  Joe’s passion for the industry is deeply rooted as a result of personal and family health crisis related to oncology and rare disease. Joe leads all global sales, marketing and channel partnership activities focused on providing unique, value-based Software-as-a-Service digital biomarker capabilities to our clients and partners.

Prior to joining Koneska, Joe was Chief Revenue Officer and Chief Customer Officer at SHYFT Analytics, and prior to that, Joe spent over 13 years at Medidata Solutions holding a variety of leadership roles within the operations and commercial organizations where his last role was SVP, Commercial Operations.  Prior to Medidata, Joe held several long-term roles of increasing responsibilities at several software and consulting firms including Business Objects, I-Many and JGI.

Leadership Collaborators
Kelly Alfaro
Executive Coordinator
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Kelly Alfaro
Executive Coordinator
Madavi Allam
SQA Manager
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Madavi Allam
SQA Manager
Anna Aronov
Commercial Operations Director
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Anna Aronov
Commercial Operations Director
John Babb
Data Science Platform Manager
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John Babb
Data Science Platform Manager
Tristan Basdeo
Technology Support Director
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Tristan Basdeo
Technology Support Director
Kirthy Dantu
Process & Validation Manager
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Kirthy Dantu
Process & Validation Manager
Michael DeLorenzo
VP Engineering
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Michael DeLorenzo
VP Engineering
Farrel Goldberg
VP PMO & Special Projects
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Farrel Goldberg
VP PMO & Special Projects
Rick Griffin
VP DevOps & CorpIT
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Rick Griffin
VP DevOps & CorpIT
Reynald Hiole
Sr. Marketing Director
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Reynald Hiole
Sr. Marketing Director
Chengrui Huang
Biostatistics Manager
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Chengrui Huang
Biostatistics Manager
Katy Jones
Client Service Director
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Katy Jones
Client Service Director
Peter Kelly
Data Science Algorithms Manager
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Peter Kelly
Data Science Algorithms Manager
Emily Lui
Logistics Manager
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Emily Lui
Logistics Manager
Kelly Moran
Talent Partner
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Kelly Moran
Talent Partner
George Pappas
Help Desk Manager
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George Pappas
Help Desk Manager
Michael Pfluger
VP Sales
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Michael Pfluger
VP Sales
Arvind Ramanujam
Data Science Director
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Arvind Ramanujam
Data Science Director
Stan Spagnuolo
Quality Assurance Director
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Stan Spagnuolo
Quality Assurance Director
Juanita Yim
VP Product Management
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Juanita Yim
VP Product Management
Our Advisory Board
Keith M. Gottesdiener
MD
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Keith M. Gottesdiener
MD

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Sachin H. Jain
MD, MBA
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Sachin H. Jain
MD, MBA

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Bernard M. Rosof
MD, MACP
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Bernard M. Rosof
MD, MACP

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William Wood
MD, MPH
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William Wood
MD, MPH

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Theodore F. Reiss
MD, MBE, ATSF
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Theodore F. Reiss
MD, MBE, ATSF

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Bruno Villetelle
MSc, MEng
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Bruno Villetelle
MSc, MEng

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