Linda-Gail Bekker is deputy director of the Desmond Tutu HIV Centre at the Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and chief operating officer of the Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation. She was president of the International AIDS Society from 2016 to 2018.
Bekker is a physician-scientist and infectious disease specialist focusing on programmatic and action research around antiretroviral rollout, TB integration, and HIV prevention in key populations. She is principal investigator of the UCT Clinical Trials Unit funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health and is actively involved in the work of its associated clinical research sites and networks. She has chaired protocols for the HIV Vaccine Trials Network and HIV Prevention Trials Network and has been investigator of record in a number of network-related protocols. She also has served on numerous international and federal scientific and working committees. Bekker leads the Desmond Tutu Centre of Adolescent Health and Wellbeing at UCT, which aims to develop evidence-based best practices around adolescent treatment and prevention of HIV, TB, and STIs, including the integration of these services within a robust, adolescent-friendly sexual and reproductive service platform.
She holds medical degrees from the University of Cape Town and a Ph.D. from the Rockefeller University.
David L. Blumberg has more than 20 years of business and consulting experience across the life sciences continuum, including global, specialty, and generic pharmaceuticals; biotech; and medical devices and products. Currently, he is the vice president of Global Operations and Portfolio Compliance at Teva Pharmaceuticals.
Previously, Blumberg led the U.S. pharmaceuticals and life sciences advisory practice at KPMG. Prior to that, Blumberg was the executive vice president of professional services and customer support of a public software company that specializes in contract and demand management for life sciences corporations. He spent several years at Accenture, where he served as lead partner for the pharmaceutical and medical products industries and led one of the corporation’s largest account relationships.
Blumberg serves on the board of advisers for the Vagelos Life Sciences and Management Program at the University of Pennsylvania. He has been a guest lecturer at the Wharton School, Harvard Business School, and New York Institute of Technology.
He holds an MBA from the Wharton School and a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Ohio State University.
Jim Connolly is the former president and CEO of Aeras, a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing tuberculosis vaccines. He served in this role from 2010 through 2012 and as Aeras board member until the asset transfer to IAVI in 2018. Recently, Connolly served as CEO of Tivorsan Pharmaceuticals and as consultant/adviser to various pharmaceutical, biotech, and investment organizations.
Connolly joined Aeras after over 23 years of pharmaceutical industry experience at Wyeth (now Pfizer), where he held a series of increasingly senior management, commercial, business development, and finance positions, including executive vice president and general manager, Wyeth Vaccines; president and managing director and vice president, sales and marketing, Wyeth Canada; area business director for Northern California and Nevada; business director for Wyeth’s disease management joint venture with Medco; and director of finance.
During his tenure leading Wyeth Vaccines from 2005 to 2009, Connolly played a leading role in building the company’s vaccines business into one of the top four global manufacturers and expanding access to the breakthrough pneumococcal vaccine Prevnar to more than 100 countries and 35 national immunization programs, including numerous emerging and developing countries where pneumococcal disease is a major cause of child mortality.
Currently, he is on the board of directors of Vaxess Technologies, Tivorsan Pharmaceuticals, and Covenant House Pennsylvania.
He holds a B.S. in business administration from Washington University in St. Louis.
Mark Dybul, M.D., is the faculty co-director of the Center for Global Health and Quality and professor in the department of medicine at Georgetown University Medical Center.
Dybul has worked on HIV and public health for more than 25 years as a clinician, scientist, teacher, and administrator, most recently as the executive director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
After graduating from Georgetown Medical School in Washington D.C., Dybul joined the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases as a research fellow under director Dr. Anthony Fauci, where he conducted basic and clinical studies on HIV virology, immunology and treatment optimization, including the first randomized, controlled trial with combination antiretroviral therapy in Africa.
Dybul was one of the founding architects in the formation of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, better known as PEPFAR. After serving as chief medical officer, assistant, deputy and acting director, he was appointed as its leader in 2006, becoming U.S. Global AIDS coordinator, with the rank of ambassador at the level of an assistant secretary of state. He served until early 2009.
He has written extensively in scientific and policy literature, and has received several awards and honorary degrees, including a doctor of science, honoris causa, from Georgetown University.
Wafaa El-Sadr, M.D., MPH, M.P.A., is the founder and director of ICAP and an international expert in infectious diseases and public health. Her work through ICAP in more than 30 countries integrates research, education, training and program design, implementation, scale-up, and evaluation. She aims to address major public health challenges through partnership, innovation, and collaboration. As the director of Columbia World Projects, she oversees a university-wide initiative that aims at taking scholarly work into action. She is also a principal investigator of the National Institutes of Health-funded HIV Prevention Trials Network.
El-Sadr received her medical degree from Cairo University in Egypt, a master’s degree in public health (epidemiology) from Columbia Mailman School of Public Health, and a master’s degree in public administration from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government. She was named a MacArthur fellow in 2008, is a member of the National Academy of Medicine in 2009, a fellow of the African Academy of Sciences in 2018, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in 2021.
Mark Feinberg, M.D., Ph.D., is president and CEO of IAVI where he leads a global team working to advance the development of vaccines and other biomedical innovations to protect against infection with HIV, TB, and other infectious diseases that disproportionately impact low-income countries.
Prior to joining IAVI in late 2015, Feinberg served as chief public health and science officer with Merck Vaccines. In this role, he helped advance the development and global availability of vaccines against rotavirus, human papillomavirus, and other infectious diseases. He also led a range of research initiatives to address unmet health needs in low-income countries including the establishment of the MSD-Wellcome Trust Hilleman Laboratories and the coordination of a private-public partnership to expedite Ebola vaccine development. Previously, he spent more than 20 years exploring HIV/AIDS pathogenesis, treatment, and prevention research and the biology of emerging diseases in both academia and government.
Feinberg holds an M.D. and a Ph.D. from Stanford University, and B.A. degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He pursued post-graduate medical training in internal medicine at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and postdoctoral fellowship training in the laboratory of Dr. David Baltimore at the Whitehead Institute. He has previously served as a faculty member at the University of California, San Francisco and the Emory University School of Medicine and as a medical officer in the Office of AIDS Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and as a fellow in the Advanced Leadership Initiative at Harvard University.
Feinberg is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Association of American Physicians. He served as the chair of the Interim Scientific Advisory Committee of the Collaboration for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and currently serves as a member of the CEPI Joint Coordinating Group.
Robert Goldberg has decades of deep and varied professional experience, including in many leadership positions within higher education. He currently serves as vice president, finance and administration, at Swarthmore College.
Previously, Goldberg was vice president, chief operating officer, and treasurer at Pomona College, where he managed an extensive portfolio of work, including Pomona’s $190 million annual budget and its $3 billion endowment. Before Pomona College, he was chief operating officer at Barnard College where he managed Barnard’s annual budget and oversaw nearly 500 staff members in areas charged with the day-to-day operations of the college. Prior to that, Goldberg completed 25 years of service with the federal government, most recently as the director of the Office of U.S. Foreign Assistance Resources at the Department of State (2010-2014), where he managed all aspects of the $32 billion foreign assistance budget for the department and for the U.S. Agency for International Development.
From 1995 to 2014, Goldberg served in various roles at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), including deputy associate director for international affairs, the senior career official responsible for budget and policy matters related to the U.S. government’s international affairs program; chief of the Force Structure and Investment Branch of OMB’s National Security Division; and senior budget analyst. His first public sector role was evaluator in the National Security and International Affairs Division of the former General Accounting Office (now Government Accountability Office).
He holds both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in international relations from George Washington University.
Eric Goosby, M.D., has worked in HIV/AIDS research, treatment, advocacy, and policy for more than 25 years and is a leading global expert and champion in fighting the disease. Currently he serves on the board of directors for Friends of the Global Fight Against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
As U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator from 2009 to 2013, Goosby directed the U.S. HIV/AIDS response and led implementation of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief under President Obama. He also was founding director of the Office of Global Health Diplomacy under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed him Special Envoy on Tuberculosis in 2015.
Goosby began his career treating HIV/AIDS patients at San Francisco General Hospital, where he was associate medical director from 1984-1991. He joined the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in 1991 as the first director of the Ryan White Care Act and served as deputy director of the White House National AIDS Policy Office and director of the Office of HIV/AIDS Policy from 1995-2000. He also was the founding CEO and chief medical officer of Pangaea Global AIDS Foundation.
He holds an M.D. from the University of California, San Francisco, where he completed his residency and fellowship specializing in infectious diseases and remained on faculty, receiving a Kaiser Family Foundation Award to support junior faculty. He has published over 250 peer-reviewed publications, numerous technical book chapters, and editorial pieces.
Alexis M. Pinto, J.D., is an accomplished legal and strategic executive with over two decades of deep experience in the health care industry. She was formerly chief legal officer and corporate secretary at Zentalis Pharmaceuticals, where she was responsible for all legal, compliance, and corporate governance matters.
Prior to joining Zentalis, Pinto served as corporate vice president and corporate secretary at Celgene Corporation, with broad responsibilities including business development, corporate governance and securities, executive compensation, and early research and development, and where she was lead counsel on critical transactions with significant financial impact and complex IP, commercial, and licensing components, including the US$74 billion acquisition of Celgene by Bristol Myers Squibb and Celgene’s global, immuno-oncology collaboration with BeiGene, Ltd. In addition, Pinto established Celgene’s Office of the Corporate Secretary.
Prior to Celgene, Pinto was with Merck & Co., Inc. for 18 years, moving through roles of increasing scope and complexity, and partnered with research and development, finance, vaccines, manufacturing, sales and marketing, and government/public affairs. In her final post, she served as managing counsel, where she led intricate transactions including the $14.2 billion sale of Merck Consumer Care to Bayer and the establishment of the India-based MSD/Wellcome Trust Hilleman Laboratories. Pinto also led or participated in numerous worldwide corporate initiatives, including those involving diversity, equity, and inclusion. Prior to joining Merck, Pinto was an associate at the law firm Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker.
Pinto earned her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law and her B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of Virginia. She completed the corporate governance program at Columbia Business School and the leadership in corporate counsel program at Harvard Law School. Pinto is a member of the New York and the New Jersey state bars. Currently, Pinto is an Advisory Board Member, Atlantic Health Systems, and Trustee, the Kefalas-Pinto Foundation.
John Shiver is chief strategy officer at IGM Biosciences – Infectious Diseases Business Unit. He has more than 26 years of vaccine and pharmaceutical R&D experience in industry and government labs. Before joining IGM Biosciences, he was senior vice president of global vaccine R&D at Sanofi Pasteur, and prior to joining Sanofi Pasteur, he led vaccine research at Merck and served in the experimental immunology branch of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Throughout his career, Shiver has led teams of scientists to develop novel vaccine and monoclonal antibody candidates against a broad range of diseases, which has contributed to the licensure of several new vaccines against HPV, rotavirus, zoster, dengue, as well as the combined measles, mumps, rubella and varicella pediatric vaccine.
Shiver is a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and the International Society for Vaccines, and a member of the NIH HIV-1 Vaccine Testing Network Laboratory Science Advisory Committee and the Scientific Advisory Board of the Seattle Biomedical Research Institute. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania College of Medicine and a member of the editorial board of Nature Partner Journals (npj) Vaccines.
He holds a B.S. in chemistry/mathematics from Wofford College and a Ph.D. in physical chemistry from the University of Florida.
Susan Silbermann, MBA, M.A., is a former senior executive at Pfizer, starting as a summer intern and retiring after more than 30 years, having served the company in leadership on three continents across multiple businesses. In her final post she served as global president of Emerging Markets, responsible for 10,000 colleagues across over 100 countries, inclusive of Pfizer’s Vaccines business. She created and drove Pfizer’s internal COVID-19 task force, ensuring global colleague safety and business continuity. Prior to this Silbermann was the first global president of Pfizer Vaccines, expanding the portfolio from one product to many, from internally developed to externally sourced. She held positions in marketing, general management, business, and commercial development in the U.S. and abroad, and partnered with research and development, manufacturing, and government/public affairs. She also led numerous initiatives in diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Silbermann brings multiple governance experiences to IAVI, having served on the boards of GAVI; Catalyst, Inc.; the Johns Hopkins University Carey School of Business; and Harvard Kennedy School’s Women’s Leadership Board. Further, she was the vice chair of the President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa.
Currently, Silbermann is a board director at HilleVax, Inc. and at LianBio. She is a board member of Harvard’s Defeating Malaria: from Gene to Globe Initiative, as well as Meet the Writers, a nonprofit bringing together authors and students in low-income NYC public schools.
Silbermann holds a B.S. in biology and French from Tufts University and a joint MBA/M.A. in business administration and French political and social studies from NYU’s Stern School of Business and the Institute of French Studies at NYU’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.
Anne Martin Simonds is the global leader of the Health, Development and Social Enterprise business practice at Spencer Stuart, a global leadership advisory firm, where she specializes in board, CEO, and president searches and board/leadership advisory engagements for organizations worldwide. Her clients range from global nonprofits, foundations, government, and academic institutions to specialty pharmaceutical and biotech companies.
Previously, Simonds led the creation of the global health practice at Russell Reynolds Associates, and concurrently built the biotech vaccines and rare disease portfolio in another global search firm. Prior to that, she conducted research at the Johns Hopkins Medical School, the University of Virginia Medical Center, the University of Connecticut, and the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University.
Simonds is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, the Women Business Leaders of the U.S. Health Care Industry Foundation, the Global Citizens Council of the U.N. Foundation, and the Global Health Council. She serves as vice chair of the board of Project HOPE and as a senior adviser to the Global Development Incubator.
She holds a B.A. in biology from the University of Virginia.
Rajeev Venkayya, M.D., is the CEO of Aerium Therapeutics. Aerium is a building a pipeline of biologics and small molecule antivirals focused on protecting the world against pandemic and epidemic threats
Previously, Venkayya was President, Global Vaccine Business Unit, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, where he managed a vertically integrated business with all functions necessary for the development, manufacturing, and commercialization of Takeda’s vaccines. Takeda’s development pipeline includes vaccine candidates for dengue, norovirus, Zika (funded by the U.S. government), and Sabin-strain inactivated polio vaccine (funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation).Before that, he was director of Vaccine Delivery at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he oversaw the foundation’s top priorities of polio eradication and new vaccine introduction. Earlier in his career, Venkayya was the special assistant to the president and senior director for biodefense at the White House, where he led biodefense policy development and implementation including the National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza. He first came to Washington in 2002 through the nonpartisan White House Fellows program. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and an independent board member of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI).
Venkayya served as an assistant professor of pulmonary and critical care medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and as co-director of the medical intensive care unit and director of the high-risk asthma clinic at San Francisco General Hospital.
Venkayya completed the six-year B.S./M.D. program at the Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine and was chief medical resident in internal medicine at the University of Michigan.
Marijke Wijnroks, M.D., is head of strategic investment of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (The Global Fund). The Global Fund raises and invests nearly $4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in countries and communities most in need.
Wijnroks has more than 25 years of experience in global health and development work, serving in the government, at the United Nations, and in civil society, and working in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Europe. Previously, she was ambassador for HIV/AIDS and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, and deputy director of the Social Development Department in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Netherlands. There she oversaw policy and strategy development in areas related to HIV/AIDS, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and civil society; advised senior leadership on development and health issues; and represented the Dutch government on the boards of several leading organizations, including the Global Fund, Gavi, and UNAIDS.
She earned a medical degree from Maastricht University in the Netherlands and a degree in tropical health and medicine from the Institute for Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium.