CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Dec. 17, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Merrimack Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:MACK) today announced the election of Russell T. Ray to its Board of Directors, effective January 1, 2015. Ray is a leading investment banker and venture capital investor in the life sciences sector, and has served as a director and advisor for many prominent companies in the healthcare sector during his 30 years of experience.
Ray began his career in investment banking as a member of the High Tech Emerging Growth Group at Merrill Lynch. After his time at Merrill Lynch, Ray spent twelve years at Deutsche Bank and its predecessor entities, BT Alex. Brown and Alex. Brown & Sons, as a Managing Director and Global Head of Healthcare Investment Banking. Ray then joined Credit Suisse First Boston and served as a Managing Director and Global Co-Head of Healthcare Investment Banking where he focused on providing strategic and financial advice to life sciences, healthcare services and medical device companies. During his investment banking career, Ray successfully completed over 175 merger and financing transactions for leading healthcare companies in the United States, Europe and Israel. Currently, Ray serves as a Senior Advisor to HLM Venture Partners, a healthcare venture capital firm focused on investing in healthcare information technology, healthcare services and medical technology companies. Ray also serves as a Director of Allergan, Inc. and SWP Media, Inc.
"Russ is a pioneer and dedicated financial specialist in the life sciences space," said Gary Crocker, Chairman of the Board of Merrimack. "His strong financial and investment expertise will provide valuable guidance and a unique perspective to the Merrimack Board, which will be critical as we move the company forward into the next phase of becoming a commercial organization."
Ray is a graduate of the United States Military Academy, where he earned his B.S. in Engineering, and the University of Washington, where he earned his B.S. in Ecology and Zoology. He also earned his Master of Science in Evolutionary Biology from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.B.A. in Finance from the Wharton School.
"I am honored to serve as a director on the Board and to be joining the Merrimack community," said Ray. "Merrimack is an organization that holds great potential to change the landscape of personalized cancer care, with one of the most robust oncology pipelines in the industry that aims to couple innovative cancer therapies with diagnostics. This is a valuable and novel approach which will have a profound impact on healthcare treatment and service, and I look forward to helping Merrimack grow and develop as it enters this exciting new chapter."
Merrimack also announced today the retirement of Sarah Nash, effective December 31, 2014.
"Sarah has played a leading role on our board for nine years, guiding Merrimack through its development and transition to a public company," said Robert Mulroy, President & CEO of Merrimack. "We are honored to have worked with Sarah, and are grateful for her commitment to Merrimack and the fight against cancer. Her passion and leadership have been a solid model for Merrimack's directors and will be carried on as we transition to a commercial organization."
Ray is joining Board members Gary Crocker, Board Chairman and President of Crocker Ventures; Gordon Fehr, former Chairman and President of Pfizer Canada; Vivian S. Lee, Ph.D., M.D., Senior Vice President for Health Sciences at the University of Utah, Dean of the University's School of Medicine, and CEO of University of Utah Health Care; John Mendelsohn, M.D., co-director of the new Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy at MD Anderson and former President of MD Anderson from 1996 to 2011; Michael Porter, Ph.D., Bishop William Lawrence University Professor at Harvard Business School; James Quigley, CEO emeritus of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, Limited (the Deloitte Global Network); Anthony Sinskey, Sc.D., co-founder of Merrimack and Professor of Microbiology and Engineering Systems in the Biology Department at MIT; and Robert Mulroy, President and CEO of Merrimack.
Merrimack is a biopharmaceutical company discovering, developing and preparing to commercialize innovative medicines paired with companion diagnostics for the treatment of cancer. Merrimack seeks to gain a deeper understanding of underlying cancer biology through its systems biology-based approach and develop new insights, therapeutics and diagnostics to improve outcomes for cancer patients. Merrimack currently has six oncology therapeutics in clinical development and three additional candidates in late stage preclinical development. Merrimack's lead product candidate, MM-398, recently completed a Phase 3 clinical trial in post-gemcitabine pancreatic cancer. Based on the results of this clinical trial, Merrimack is currently preparing a New Drug Application for MM-398. For more information, please visit Merrimack's website at www.merrimackpharma.com or connect on Twitter at @MerrimackPharma.
Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Merrimack constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements. Merrimack anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause its views to change. However, while Merrimack may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, Merrimack specifically disclaims any obligation to do so.
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