Avtar Dhillon, MD
Dr. Dhillon is a life sciences entrepreneur with more than 20 years’ experience building public companies through mergers and acquisitions, leading innovation in scientific, engineering and farming enterprises, securing government grants and NGO funding (more than US$75 million to date), and building dominant IP portfolios through partnering. During his tenure as President and CEO at Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: INO), Dr. Dhillon led the turnaround of the company through restructuring and acquisitions. Under his leadership, Inovio completed financing totaling over US$250 million and several licensing deals with global pharma leaders, such as Merck, Wyeth (now Pfizer), and Roche. Before joining Inovio, he was Vice President of MDS Capital Corp. (now Lumira Capital Corp.), one of North American’s leading healthcare venture capital organizations. Dr. Dhillon practiced family medicine for over 12 years and currently sits on the board of the Cannabis Association of Canada. He has a BSc (Honours) in Human Physiology and an MD from the University of British Columbia.
Gaetano Morello, ND
Dr. Morello is an accomplished clinician with direct, first-hand experience in the clinical and medical application of cannabinoids. Dr. Morello continues to practice at the Complex Chronic Disease Program at Woman’s Hospital in Vancouver, Canada. He also serves on the Quality Assurance Committee for the College of Naturopathic Physicians of British Columbia and other health and medical panels. He authored Cleanse: The Ultimate Inside Out Approach and The Fiber Miracle, and is a contributing author to A Textbook of Natural Medicine, Alive Magazine, Viva Magazine and other publications. He has made more than 500 medical presentations in the US, Canada, Australia, Germany, and Italy in the last decade. Dr. Morello has a BSc in Cell Biology/Nutrition from the University of British Columbia and a Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine from Bastyr University.
Mr. Dhillon is the co-founder and director of OncoSec Medical Incorporated, a leading biopharmaceutical company developing cancer immunotherapies for the treatment of solid tumors. Prior to OncoSec, he served as Vice President of Finance and Operations at Inovio Pharmaceuticals, where he raised over $160 million through multiple financings and several licensing transactions. His management experience spans corporate finance, M&A integration, in-licensing of key intellectual property, strategy implementation, corporate transactions and collaborations with leading universities and key global opinion leaders. Mr. Dhillon also the co-founded BeCancerPositive.org, an online community for cancer patients. In 2014, he was a finalist in Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” competition. Mr. Dhillon holds a BA (Honors) in political science and a minor in business administration from Simon Fraser University.
Jim Heppell, BSc, LLP
Mr. Heppell is the co-founder and Director of BC Advantage Funds (VCC) Ltd., a venture fund that invests in and builds technology, life science and clean technology companies. His first fund, the Advantage Life Sciences I Fund, won the Canadian Venture Capital Deal of the Year Award in 2006. Earlier in his career, he practiced corporate securities law with Fasken Martineau DuMoulin and later served as President and CEO of Catalyst Corporate Finance Lawyers. Mr. Heppell has also helped to build a number of life science companies, including Aspreva Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Galenica Ltd. SW: GALN), Immgenics (acquired by Amgen NASDAQ: AMGN), Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: INO), and Sophiris Bio Inc. (NASDAQ: SPHS). He earned a BSc in microbiology and a law degree from the University of British Columbia.