Daniel L. Flynn, Ph.D. is President and CEO of Deciphera Pharmaceuticals. Before founding Deciphera in 2003, he was Senior Director of Chemistry with Millennium Pharmaceuticals. In a ten year period with Searle Pharmaceuticals, he brought over five compounds into preclinical development, and advanced three drugs into clinical trials. He invented and developed a major platform in combinatorial chemistry now known as "phase-trafficking" synthesis. Dan is Adjunct Professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Kansas-Lawrence and has served as the national Chair for the Division of Medicinal Chemistry of the American Chemical Society. He received his Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry at the University of Kansas.
Mark S. Berger, MD is Chief Medical Officer. He is a hematologist/oncologist with 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry working on the clinical development of new agents for oncology. Mark previously worked at Gemin X Pharmaceuticals on the development of the BCL-2 antagonist obatoclax, leading to the acquisition of that biotech company. He played a major role in the successful development at GlaxoSmithKline of lapatinib (Tykerb) for patients with breast cancer. Prior to that experience he worked at Wyeth Research where he was the lead clinician on the gemtuzumab ozogamicin (Mylotarg) program, leading to accelerated approval. Mark received training in Hematology/Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania, and was a Medicine Resident and Chief Medical Resident at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.
Michael D. Kaufman, Ph.D. is Senior Director of Chemistry and Preclinical Development. He has 13 years of medicinal chemistry experience, primarily in the area of kinase inhibitors. Prior to joining Deciphera Pharmaceuticals in 2005, he was a Senior Principal Scientist at Pfizer Global Research & Development (Ann Arbor, Michigan) where he played key roles in both Oncology and Cardiovascular projects. He is the co-inventor of two kinase inhibitors that have advanced into clinical trials and a co-author of 19 peer-reviewed papers. Mike earned degrees from the University of Kansas (BA) and Indiana University (Ph.D.) and completed a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania.
Tom Fredrick heads legal affairs for Deciphera. He is co-founder of Life Science Legal LLP, a boutique firm with a niche in pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. Earlier, for Marion Laboratories and successor companies, he completed major research, development, manufacturing, commercial, and financial transactions throughout North America, Europe, and Japan while serving in various positions of increasing responsibility. His general-counsel roles ranged from the pharmaceutical joint-venture partner in a Massachusetts-based genomics center to a Puerto-Rico-based manufacturing company. Tom holds degrees in business administration/economics (Kansas) and law (Iowa). He serves on KU’s business school faculty, teaching courses in management and business law.
John W. Lord is Director of Information Technology. He has over 11 years experience as a network administrator and 5 years as an analytical chemist. Before joining in 2004, John was the manager of Information Technology for the Medicinal Chemistry Department and the School of Pharmacy at the University of Kansas. Previous positions include Information Specialist for the University of Kansas Center for Research and Manager of Information Technology for Oread Inc. John has received multiple IT certifications and training, including Cisco’s CCNA, Oracle Administration, CompTIA’s Network+ and A+. John received his Bachelors of Science in Chemistry from the University of Kansas.
Susan E. McElwain, CPA is Director of Finances. Prior to joining Deciphera, Susan was the Business Director at the Lawrence Arts Center. She was the Director of Operations and a Partner of Kornitzer Capital Management, Inc in Shawnee Mission, KS for seventeen years. She worked as a Supervising Audit Senior at KPMG, (formerly, Peat Marwick) in Wichita, KS and a Staff Accountant at Ernst & Young, (formerly, Ernst & Whinney) in San Antonio, TX. Susan received her CPA and a Bachelor of Science in Accounting at Kansas State University. Susan currently serves on the Lawrence School Foundation and is on the Planned Giving Committee of Lawrence Memorial Hospital.
Bryan D. Smith, Ph.D. is Director of Biology. He has 17 years of laboratory experience, including seven in the pharmaceutical industry, primarily in translational cancer research such as targeted therapies, kinase signaling, drug discovery and development, in vivo pharmacology and biomarkers. He played a key role in identifying next-generation RAF kinase inhibitors that lack the so-called ‘paradoxical stimulation’ of the RAS/RAF/MEK/ERK signaling cascade. He has also shepherded the biology for the discovery and development of selective FMS kinase inhibitors, the MET/TIE2 inhibitor DCC-2701, and the TIE2 inhibitor rebastinib. He is an author on 10 publications and an inventor on one patent. Bryan has been a popular local science speaker at events such as Science on Tap. He received his Ph.D. in biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his undergraduate degree at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.