Dr. Frank L. Douglas is an award-winning industry veteran with three decades of experience in healthcare, pharmaceuticals, and entrepreneurship. He served as Executive Vice President, Chief Scientific Officer and Member of the Board of Management of large Pharmaceutical companies such as Aventis AG, now Sanofi, SA. He recently served as CEO of THEVAX Genetics USA Inc. and Member of the Board of TheVax Genetics Vaccine Co. He is also co-founder of Douglas Ahmed Consulting (DAC).  Some of his past experiences include: President and CEO of the Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron, Executive Vice President, Chief Scientific Officer and Member of the Board of Management of Aventis AG, Chief Scientific Advisor of Bayer Healthcare, AG, Founder and First Executive Director of the MIT Center for Biomedical Innovation, Professor of the Practice in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management, MIT Departments of Chemistry, Biomedical Engineering and the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Science and Technology.

Dr. Douglas holds a Ph.D. in physical chemistry and a M.D. from Cornell University.  He did his internship and residency in internal medicine at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institute and a fellowship in neuroendocrinology at the National Institutes of Health.


Dr Frank Douglas was born in British Guiana (Guyana) in 1943 where he, his mother and siblings spent his early days, sometimes homeless, sometimes hungry, often receiving relief from his mother’s wonderful friends: Mr. William Nurse (Uncle Willie) and Mrs Christabel Paris (Auntie Chrissie). After literally stepping back from the waiting abyss of a watery suicide attempt, and being told the true identity of his father, at age 12, he became a ‘born again’ Christian. In the succeeding years, he became a top student, having achieved the first place in Guyana in the College of Preceptors and the Senior Cambridge Examinations at ages 14 and 15, respectively. The latter performance won him a scholarship to Queens College High School, where he further distinguished himself as a student and leader. During this time, he also became very active in the Elim Evangelical Church and at age 19 became the Director of the Youth For Christ organization in Guyana. At age 20, he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship and came to America to study Chemistry in the Engineering College at Lehigh University. He arrived in America two weeks before the historic Martin Luther King march in Washington, D.C., where he delivered his famous ‘I have a Dream’ speech.

In his Memoirs, Dr. Douglas describes how the values that were instilled in him during his early life in Guyana, prepared him to navigate effects of racial discrimination in American universities and corporations: an American reality for which he was totally unprepared.




Dr. Douglas’s book is an excellent testament to the theory that hard work conquers all. It is a compelling story of a young man in a poor country and from low social economic status whose determination to succeed in life and with some spiritual push manages to succeed.


—Aubrey Bonnett

Professor, State University of New York

Dr. Frank L. Douglas Curriculum Vitae



Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY, 1973-1977, M.D. (Medicine)

Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, 1968-1972, Ph.D. (Physical Chemistry)

Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, 1966-1968, M.S. (Physical Chemistry)

Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA, 1963-1966, B.S. (Cum Laude)



National Institute of Mental Health, Alcohol, Drug Abuse and Mental Health Administration,

Laboratory of Clinical Science, and Unit of Neuroendocrinology, 1981-1982

National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, Clinical Associate, 1979-1982

Johns Hopkins University Medical School, Department of Medicine, Fellow, Baltimore, MD, 1977-1979

Osler Medical Service, Johns Hopkins Medical Institution, Baltimore, MD, Internship and Residency, 1977-1979)



2015 – CEO of The Vax Genetics Vaccine US Inc.

2009 – 2014 President and CEO of Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron

2009 – University Professor, Department of Polymer Science, University of Akron

2009 – Professor of Integrated Medical Sciences, Northeastern Ohio Universities, College of Medicine and Pharmacy.

2006 –  Senior Partner Puretech Ventures

2006 – 2012 – Chief Scientific Advisor for Bayer Healthcare, AG.

2007 – 2009 – Senior Fellow Ewing M. Kauffman Foundation

2005 – 2007 –  Professor of the Practice in the MIT Sloan School of Business, Department of Chemistry, Department of Biological Engineering and the Harvard-MIT Division of Health, Science and Technology.

2002 – 2004 – Member of the Board of Management of Aventis SA

1999 – 2004 – Member of the Board, Aventis Pharma AG

1999 – 2004 – Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer, Aventis Pharma AG & Aventis SA

1995 – 1999 –  Executive Vice President, Global Research, Hoechst Marion Roussel. Member, Executive Committee

1992 – 1995 – Executive Vice President, Research and Development, Marion Merrell Dow Inc. Member, Board of Directors

1992 – Adjunct Professor of Medicine & Pharmacology, University of Kansas

1991 – Vice President and Partner of the Biocine Company (50:50 joint venture between Ciba-Geigy and Chiron)

1988 – 1991 – Senior Vice President and Director of Research, Ciba-Geigy Pharmaceutical Corp. Member, Pharmaceutical Division Management Committee

1987 – Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Jersey

1984 – 1988 – Executive Director, Clinical Biology, Ciba-Geigy Pharmaceutical Corporation

1984 – 1989 – Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, and Member of Committee on Clinical Pharmacology, University of Chicago

1982 – 1984 – Director, Hypertension Clinic, University of Chicago

1974 – Adjunct Assistant Professor, Hunter College

1972-1973 –  Assistant Scientist, Xerox Corporation


Lt. Commander, U.S. Public Health Service, 1979-1982


Church-Based Hypertension Program in collaboration with the Chicago Heat Association for which I received the Chicago Heart of the Year Award, 1985; and the Louis B. Russell Memorial American Heart Association Award, 1986

Initiated and implemented the Accountable Care Community concept in Akron, OH. This was awarded a $1.5 million grant by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Distinguished Alumnus: P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science, Lehigh University, 2017

Weill Cornell Medical College Alumni Special Achievement Award, 2016

Sales and Marketing Executives International, Akron Canton Affiliate, Executive of the Year, 2013

Caribbean Luminary Award, 2013

Caribbean American Heritage Awards, Outstanding Entrepreneurship, 2011

Robert A. Pinkerton’s Award for Humanitarian Services, 2010

Geoffrey Beene Foundation/GQ Magazine, Rock Star of Science, 2010

Crain’s Cleveland Business’ 10 People Who Matter, 2010

Inside Business Magazine’s Power 100, 2010 & 2011

Center for Medicine in the Public Interest, Odyssey Award, 2010

Guyanese & American Business’s Professional Council’s Award, 2010

Black History Makers Award, 2007

Global Pharmaceutical Chief Scientific Officer of the Year Award, 2004

Medal of Honor, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe University of Frankfurt, 2004

NOBCChe Lifetime Achievement Award 2002

Global Pharmaceutical R&D Director of the Year Award, 2001

Chicago Heart Association:  Heart of the Year Award, 1985

Louis B. Russell Memorial American Heart Association Award, 1986

Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association Foundation Faculty Development Award in Clinical Pharmacology, 1983

Phi Beta Kappa, 1966

Omicron Delta Kappa, 1966

National Science Foundation Undergraduate Research Fellowship, 1965

Alpha Epsilon Delta, 1965

Williams Extemporaneous Speech Contest (First Prize), 1963 & 1964

Fulbright-Hays Fellowship and Travel Grant, 1963-1966


Member Board of Directors, XaTek Inc., 2018

Member of the Board of Directors, Battelle Memorial Institute, 2012  – 2017

Member, Advisory Council for National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), 2012 – 2017

Member of the Board of Trustees, BioOhio, 2011 – 2014

Member, Ohio Medical Corridor Committee, 2011 – 2013

Member of the Board of Directors of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, 2010 – 2013

Member of the Board of Directors of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, 2008 – 2012

Chairman of the Board of Directors of Solace Pharmaceuticals, 2007-2009

Chairman of the Board of Directors of Alantos, 2005 – 2007

Member of the Board of Directors of Enlight Biosciences, 2007

Member of the Board of Trustees, Lehigh University, 2005-2009

Member of the Board of Directors of Gene Logic, 2004 – 2008

Member of the Board of Directors of Nitromed Inc., 2004

Member of the Board of Directors of Archemix Inc., 2005 – 2006

Chairman, Executive Committee Research and Development Subsection Pharma Manufacturers Association 2000-2003

Member of the Advisory Board of the Paul Ehrlich Foundation, Frankfurt, Germany

Member of the Board of Advisors of the Basic and Biological Sciences Institute, The Johns Hopkins University

Member of the Interdisciplinary Biosciences Advisory Council at Stanford University, Stanford, CA

Member of the Board of Advisors of the Johann Wolfgang von Goethe University of Frankfurt, Germany

Member of the Advisory Board of the Agency for Sciences, Technology and Research of the Government of Singapore

Member of the Society of Trade, Industry and Science, Frankfurt, Germany

Member, FDA Science Board, 1995-1999

Member, Corporation Visiting Committee – Department of Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1994-1998

Member, Board of Scientific Counselors, National Institute of Mental Health, 1993-1995

Director, Industrial Research Institute, 1992-1995

Member, Scientific Advisory Board of Healthcare Ventures, 1994-2000

Director, National Association for Biomedical Research, 1994-1999

Director, KCPT Public Television 19, 1994-1995

Director, Kansas City Museum, 1993-1995

Member, Committee on Undergraduate Science Education, National Research Council, 1993-1995

Member, Editorial Board of Hypertension, 1993-1996

Member, Board of Overseers for the New Jersey Institute of Technology, 1992-1995

Chairman of Women & Minorities Leadership Committee of American Heart Assoc., 1991-1992

Program Chairman of Conference Board, Council on Management of Innovation and Technology, 1991-1992

Ruters Science Advisory Council, 1991

Member, Board of Directors of American Heart Association-National, 1990-1992

Member, Advisory Board of American Lyme Disease Foundation, New York, 1990

Member, Board of Directors of American Heart Association, New Jersey Affiliate, 1987-1992

Member, Research-On-Research Committee of the Industrial Research Institute

Member, Board of Trustees of William Patterson College, 1987-1990

Member, American Heart Association Program Committee, 1986-1988

Member, Technical Merit Review Committee, National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Diseases, NIH, 1981

Ex-Officio Member, Joint National Committee Task Force on Hypertension, 1979-1981

Member, Committee of Pharmaceuticals, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institution, 1978-1979

Member, Affirmative Action Committee, Johns Hopkins Medical Institution, 1977-1979

Member, Two-Year Task Force on Minority Education in Medicine, Association of American Medical Colleges, 1976-1978

Member, Task Force for Evaluation of Financial Factors Affecting the Efforts of U.S. Medical Schools to Achieve Equal Representation of Minority Students, Office of Health

Opportunities, H.R.A., Department of Health and Human Services, 1976-1977

Member, Committee of Health Manpower of the National Council, New York, NY, 1976-1977

National President, Student National Medical Association, Inc., 1976-1977

Member, Advisory Committee of National High Blood Pressure Education Program of National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, NIH,


Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Vice Chairman, Executive Committee of the Constituent Assembly, 1969-1970

Member, Steering Committee of African Studies and Research Center, 1969-1970


High Blood Pressure Council, American Heart Association – Fellow

The Academy of Medicine of New Jersey – Fellow

New Jersey Association of Biomedical Research (founding member)

American Association for Advancement of Science

American College of Clinical Pharmacology

American Heart Association

American Society of Hypertension

Association of Black Cardiologists

The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (The Catecholamine Club)

International Society of Hypertension in Blacks

New York Academy of Sciences


Have led teams of scientists that discovered, developed and or obtained registration for more than 20 drugs such as: Allegra, Anzemet, Arava, Actonel, Nicoderm, Lantus, Ketek; Apidra, Exubera and or added additional indications for major drugs as Taxotere and Lovenox.

Created Horizon Symposium in collaboration with Nature.

Created Chemical Biology approach to drug discovery at Aventis in 2000.


i6 Challenge — Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration Innovative Solutions to Invention Xceleration (ISIX): Oct 1, 2010 – Sept 30, 2012,  $2,200,000

CDC – Community Transformation Grant for Accountable Care Community:   Oct. 1, 2011 – Sept 30, 2014, $1,500,000

NSF — Smart Health and Wellbeing:  Sept 1, 2012 – Aug 31, 2016, $1,300,000


Ph.D. Thesis: Photoelectric Effects of ChlorophyllA Aggregates in Suspension, 1973

Douglas, F.L. and Albrecht, A.C.: Photoelectric Response from ChlorophyllA Microcrystals in Suspension. Chem. Phys. Letters, V14:150154, 1972

Douglas, F.L.; Palkovits, M.; and Brownstein, M.J.: Regional Distribution of Substance Plike Immunoreactivity in the Lower Brainstem of the Rat. Brain Res., 245:376378, 1982

Goldberg, L.I.; Douglas, F.L.: Dopamine and Hypertension: An Expanding Avenue of Research. Drug Therapy. V15(1):8793, 1985

Douglas, P.L., et al, Augmentation of Renal Blood Flow and Sodium Excretion in Hypertensive Patients During Blood Pressure Reduction by Intravenous Administration of the Dopamine, Agonist, Fenoldopam. Circulation, 76(6):13121318, December, 1987

Douglas, F.L.; Rajfer, S.; Rossen, J.; Nemanich, J.; Davis, F.; Osinski, J.: Sustained Hemodynamic Improvement During LongTerm Therapy with Levodopa in Heart Failure: Role of Plasma Catecholamines, 1987, Journal of the American College of Cardiology Vol. 10 (6) 1987 p. 12861293

Smeesters, C.; Chaland, P.; Giroux, L.; Moutquin, J.M.; Etienne, P.; Douglas, F.L.; Corman, J.; StLouis, G., and Daloze, P.: Prevention of Acute Cyclosporine A Nephrotoxicity by a Thromboxane Synthetase Inhibitor. Transplantation Proceedings; Vol XX (3), Suppl 3 (April),: 658664, 1988

Fomsgaard J.; Kim, Y.; Burke, T.; Viswanathan, T.; Schaffer, A.V.; Peppard, J.; Douglas, F.L.; Danchak, M.; Myers, A.: Effects of Thromboxane Synthetase Inhibitor and Glucocorticoid on Anaphylactoid Responses to Protamine iIn Dogs. Anesth. Analg. 74 (1) 1992 p.3843

Paul, P.K.; O’Byrne, E.; Blancuzzi, V.; Wilson, D.; Gunson, D.; Douglas, F.L.; Wang, J.Z.; Mezrich, R.S.: Magnetic Resonance Imaging Reflects Cartilage Proteoclycan Degradation in the Rabbit Knee. Skeletal Radiol.1991, Vol. 20 (1), p. 316

Douglas, F.: Dilemmas in Clinical Research. Scrip Magazine, June 1993

Douglas, F.L. MacKenzie, M. and Tollman, P.A.: How to spend a Billion Dollars: Two basic R&D archtypes. IN VIVO July 1998

Naraynan, V.K.; Douglas, F.L.; Guernsey, B; Charnes, John: How top management steers Fast Cycle Teams to Success. Strategy & Leadership Vol 30, (3) 2002

Naraynan, V.K., Douglas F.L. et al. Virtual Communities as an Organizational Mechnanism for Embedding Knowledge Management In Drug Development: The Case of Chemical Biology Platform. Journal of business Chemistry, 2004, 1, pp 37-46.

Capabilities in Bala Chakravarthy et al. (Ed.) Strategy Process, Blackwell

Douglas, F.L. Litan, R., Fighting the War on Cancer. The Scientist Magazine, October, 2008

Nwaka S, Ramirez B, Brun R, Maes L, Douglas F, Ridley R., Advancing drug innovation for neglected diseases-criteria for lead progression. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2009 Aug 25;3(8):e440.

Douglas, F.L. et al:  Value-driven Engineering for US Global Competitiveness, June 2011.

Douglas, FL. Innovation and value-driven engineering.  Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2012 May;11(5):335.

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