Chutes & Ladders—Boehringer Ingelheim shuffles exec team on heels of pipeline pickups


Chutes and Ladders
Welcome to this week's Chutes & Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word—or the bad—from your shop to Kyle Blankenship, and we will feature it here at the end of each week.

Boehringer pharma chief heads for the exit amid a top-level reshuffling

Boehringer Ingelheim
Allan Hillgrove, who headed the company's human pharma and biopharma businesses, will exit. 

The 37-year Boehringer veteran responsible for the company’s human pharma and biopharma businesses is set to retire at the end of the year, Boehringer said. He'll be replaced by Carine Brouillon, who heads Boehringer’s therapeutics meds department, both at the pharma helm and on Boehringer's board. She'll take both roles beginning Jan. 1. Hillgrove isn’t the only company leader on the way out: Joachim Hasenmaier, who has led the company’s animal health business since 2001, will also retire and step down as a board member. Taking his place at the helm of animal health will be Jean Scheftsik de Szolnok, who'll also join the board. Finally, Andreas Neumann will step down from the board next month and leave the company as Boehringer moves to split HR responsibilities between CEO Hubertus Von Baumbach and CFO Michael Schmelmer. FiercePharma

Medtronic CEO Ishrak to retire in 2020, restorative therapies head Martha to take over

CEO Omar Ishrak will retire in 2020.

Medtronic's chief executive plans to retire from the post in April 2020 at the end of the medtech giant’s current fiscal year. The move kicks off a lengthy succession process, according to the company, that will see Restorative Therapies Group EVP Geoff Martha ultimately elevated to the top spot. Before that, starting Nov. 1, Martha will join the board of directors and take on the newly created role of president to oversee Medtronic’s various operating groups and regions. Martha will take over as CEO April 27, 2020, while Ishrak will become Medtronic’s first executive chairman to help guide the transition. FierceBiotech

Zealand Pharma signs on new CFO, expands into new digs

Zealand Pharma
Senior VP Ivan Møller will hand over the reins to a new CFO. 

Matthew Dallas will take over as the Danish drugmaker's CFO as it prepares for market. Dallas has handled the books at several biotech companies, spending 10 years at Genzyme and serving as CFO at CoLucid Pharmaceuticals and, most recently, Aveo Oncology. He takes over from Møller, who has been juggling the interim CFO role with his duties as senior vice president of technical development and operations. FierceBiotech

> Rachel Humphrey, M.D., who joined CytomX Therapeutics as CMO after heading immuno-oncology at AstraZeneca and Eli Lilly, has made her exit. Her tenure at the Probody biotech ended Monday, according to an SEC filing. The company gave no reason for her departure. A doctor by training, Humphrey started her biopharma career at Bayer, overseeing the development of the bladder cancer drug Nexavar before moving on to Bristol-Myers Squibb, where she worked on the immuno-oncology med Yervoy. She signed on as chief medical officer at Mirati before heading to AstraZeneca and then Eli Lilly for comparatively short stints to lead those companies’ immuno-oncology efforts. FierceBiotech

Aerie Pharmaceuticals has named Luis Vargas as medical director for medical affairs. The appointment puts Vargas in charge of medical affairs organizational planning and operational matters at the eye disease company. Vargas has a long history in the vision care sector. The new Aerie hire worked at Visiogen in the six years preceding its acquisition by Abbott Laboratories in a $400 million deal. Vargas then spent three years at Abbott as an associate medical director before moving on to take up the position of vice president of medical affairs at ReVision Optics. FierceBiotech

> Pionyr Immunotherapeutics announced the appointment of Alicia Levey, Ph.D., as senior VP and CBO. Prior to joining Pionyr, Levey served as VP and CBO of Tempest Therapeutics following her roles as VP of business development at Inception Sciences, operating principal at Versant Ventures and project leader at Boston Consulting Group. Levey is also the co-founder of Akrotome Imaging. Release

> Orchestra BioMed has upgraded Dennis Donohoe, M.D., from its part-time to full-time CMO. For the past four years, Donohoe has been the owner of Donohoe Clinical Consultants LLC, a clinical and regulatory advisory firm that provided services to a number of companies developing innovative products in the field of interventional cardiovascular devices. For 20 years prior to that, Donohoe worked in various clinical leadership roles within Johnson & Johnson. Release

> Reata Pharmaceuticals has pegged Manmeet Soni as CFO and executive VP. Jason Wilson, who has been with Reata since 2006 and served as CFO, will assume a new role as executive VP of operations. Most recently, Soni served as the CFO of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals and previously served as CFO at Ariad Pharmaceuticals and CFO at Pharmacyclics. Release