Management Team

Senior Management

Todd Davis

Chief Executive Officer

Todd C. Davis is Ligand’s Chief Executive Officer, a position he has held since December 2022, and has served as a member of the Board since March 2007. From 2006 until 2018, Mr. Davis was a Founder and Managing Partner of HealthCare Royalty Partners, a global healthcare investment firm which grew from zero to approximately $4 billion in capital commitments during his tenure. Previously, Mr. Davis served as a partner responsible for biopharmaceutical growth equity investments at Apax Partners. Mr. Davis began his business career in sales at Abbott Laboratories where he held several sales and marketing positions of increasing responsibility. Subsequently he led corporate development and held strategic planning and general management responsibilities at Elan Pharmaceuticals. Cumulatively he has almost thirty years of experience in both operations and investing in the biopharmaceutical and life sciences industries. Mr. Davis has been involved in over $3 billion of healthcare financings including growth equity, public equity turnarounds, structured debt and royalty acquisitions. He has also led, structured and closed over 40 additional intellectual property licenses, as well as hybrid royalty-debt transactions. Mr. Davis is a navy combat veteran and holds a B.S. from the U.S. Naval Academy and an M.B.A. from Harvard University. He currently also serves on the boards of Palvella Therapeutics Inc. and ViroCell Biologics – both privately held companies. He is a former board member of the Harvard Business School Healthcare Alumni Association.

Matthew Korenberg

President and Chief Operating Officer

Matthew Korenberg, has served as our President and Chief Operating Officer since November 2022 and prior to that as our Chief Financial Officer since August 2015. Prior to joining our company, commencing in September 2013, Mr. Korenberg was the founder, Chief Executive Officer and a director of NeuroCircuit Therapeutics, a company focused on developing drugs to treat genetic disorders of the brain with an initial focus on Down syndrome. Prior to founding NeuroCircuit Therapeutics, Mr. Korenberg was a Managing Director and member of the healthcare investment banking team at Goldman Sachs from July 1999 through August 2013. During his 14 year tenure at Goldman Sachs, Mr. Korenberg was focused on advising and financing companies in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors and was based in New York, London and San Francisco. Prior to Goldman Sachs, Mr. Korenberg was a healthcare investment banker at Dillon, Read & Co. Inc. where he spent two years working with healthcare companies in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sectors and industrial companies. Mr. Korenberg serves on the board, audit and compensation committees of Qualigen Therapeutics, Inc., a company which develops and manufactures oncology focused therapeutics and diagnostic products. Mr. Korenberg holds a B.B.A. in Finance and Accounting from the University of Michigan

Tavo Espinoza

Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Espinoza has been with Ligand since 2016 serving in a variety of finance leadership roles at Ligand, most recently as Senior Vice President, Finance. Prior to joining Ligand, Mr. Espinoza served as Senior Director, Finance for Receptos, a publicly traded drug-discovery company, that was acquired by Celgene (now Bristol-Myers Squibb). Before Receptos, Mr. Espinoza was Senior Director, Accounting for Illumina, a publicly traded life sciences analytics and genetics sequencing tools company, and prior to Illumina, served as Senior Manager, Accounting at Intuit. Mr. Espinoza began his professional career in public accounting at PricewaterhouseCoopers and holds a B.S. in business administration from San Diego State University and a license as a Certified Public Accountant in the State of California.

Andrew Reardon

Chief Legal Officer

Prior to joining Ligand, Mr. Reardon was with HealthCare Royalty Management, a manager of investment funds investing in biopharmaceutical products primarily through royalty purchases and structured credit. Prior to HealthCare Royalty Management, Mr. Reardon was an associate with the international law firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher, where he focused on corporate transactions, including finance and mergers and acquisitions. Mr. Reardon earned his J.D. from the University of Iowa College of Law, graduating with High Distinction and receiving the Alan I. Widiss Faculty Scholar Award, and received his B.A. with honors from the State University of New York College at Old Westbury.

Audrey Warfield-Graham

Chief People Officer

Audrey Warfield-Graham directs Human Resources at Ligand. Ms. Warfield-Graham has worked continuously in the Human Resources department since joining the Company in December 1994. She has held a progression of positions with increased responsibilities during her tenure at Ligand. She was promoted to Chief People Officer in 2022, Senior Vice President, Human Resources in 2018 and to Vice President, Human Resources in 2007. Her previous human resources experience was with Fresh Western, an interstate agricultural business located in Monterey County, California. Ms. Warfield-Graham's management experience includes benefits administration, change management, employee relations, leave management, recruitment, staffing strategies, stock administration and performance management. She received her SPHR certification in January 2007.

Pelican Expression Technology Leadership

Diane Retallack, PhD

SVP, Platform Technology and Innovation

Diane Retallack, PhD has over 25 years experience in molecular biology, microbial genetics and protein expression. As a founding member of the team that established the Pelican Expression Technology™ platform within Dow Chemical Company, she has contributed to partnered and internal programs focused on strain engineering and upstream processing, supporting CMC development through regulatory filing. An inventor on over 70 granted patents and over 35 active patent applications, she actively managed the Pelican Expression Technology™ patent portfolio following the spin out from Dow, expanding the platform and product related intellectual property estate. Dr. Retallack earned her PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Michigan, completed post-doctoral studies in the Medical Microbiology and Immunology department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is a registered patent agent.

Jeff Allen, PhD

VP, Protein Sciences

Jeff Allen, PhD was a founding member of the Pelican team responsible for analytical development, detailed protein product characterization, downstream processing, and regulatory CMC to support internal and partnered programs. Now with Ligand, Dr. Allen supports current and new partnerships and collaborations for Pelican Expression Technology™, providing scientific oversight and input to the continued growth, innovation, and technical assessment of new opportunities. Dr. Allen has more than 25 years of experience in protein biochemistry having held positions as R&D Leader of Analytical Biochemistry and Senior R&D Biochemist at DowPharma, a business within The Dow Chemical Company, prior to forming Pfenex in 2009. He joined Dow in 1999 where his main responsibilities included R&D support in Dow’s Human Health and Diagnostics platform. Dr. Allen has authored and contributed to multiple publications, presentations, global regulatory filings, and patents and holds a PhD in Biochemistry from Utah State University, and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Molecular Biology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Keith Haney

VP, Operations

Keith Haney, Vice President of Development Operations, leads our technology transfer, manufacturing, quality, and project and alliance management teams. Joining Mycogen Corporation in 1992, Mr. Haney performed in roles supporting discovery and process development including multiple agricultural products utilizing Pseudomonas fluorescens to deliver insecticidal proteins. Following the acquisition of Mycogen by The Dow Chemical Company, Mr. Haney developed fermentation processes for internal projects and client programs utilizing the Pelican Expression Technology™ for both industrial and pharmaceutical applications. Subsequently, he has transferred a number of processes into cGMP manufacturing facilities and had the opportunity to lead cross-functional product development teams, including the team which developed Bonsity™, Pelican’s first commercial product. Mr. Haney has contributed to multiple publications and patents and holds a BA in Biological Sciences from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Captisol Leadership

Vince Antle, PhD

Senior Vice President, Technical Operations and QA

Dr. Antle joined Ligand in 2011, following Ligand's acquisition of CyDex Pharmaceuticals.  He joined CyDex in 2005.  Dr. Antle is currently responsible for quality assurance, internal drug product quality, operations, distribution and logistics for Captisol.  From 1999 to 2005, Dr. Antle was Technical Operations Manager and Head of Process Development at EaglePicher Pharmaceuticals Services.  Prior to 1999, he was Group Leader for the Combinatorial Chemistry Department of MDS Panlabs in Bothell, Washington.  Dr. Antle has contributed to publications, presentation and patents and holds a PhD from the University of Cincinnati in medicinal chemistry, and a BA in chemistry from the University of Minnesota, Morris.

James Pipkin, PhD

Vice President, New Product Development

Dr. Pipkin joined Ligand in 2011, following Ligand's acquisition of CyDex Pharmaceuticals.  He joined CyDex in 2001.  Dr. Pipkin's responsibilities include development of new applications, intellectual property and products utilizing Captisol both internally and assisting clients, whether the application involves new molecular entities, an Orphan designated drug or reformulations of existing drugs for lifecycle management via the 505(b)(2) regulatory pathway.  Prior to joining Ligand, he was Executive Director for CMC Services and Director of Formulation Development at Oread Laboratories from 1995 to 2001.  From 1986 through 1995, he was a Research Fellow with Merck Research Laboratories in the INTERx Research Division and West Point PR&D facilities; his area of research was in the design and evaluation of controlled-release devices for ophthalmic and oral delivery to enhance therapeutic efficacy and lower systemic burden.  He was at The Squibb Institute for Medical Research from 1980 through 1985, where he directed the pre-formulation activities for new chemical entities.  He has contributed to numerous presentations, publications and patents and holds MS and PhD degrees from The University of Kansas in pharmaceutical chemistry, and a BA in mathematics and chemistry from Kansas University.

Research Leadership

Keith Marschke, PhD

Senior Vice President, Biology and Scientific Affairs

Dr. Marschke joined Ligand in 1994 and is currently the head of Biology and Scientific Affairs. He has had leadership roles in many of Ligand's most successful internal and collaborative discovery and development programs, including the Thrombopoietin (TPO) Receptor Agonist, Selective Androgen Receptor Modulator (SARM), Glucagon Receptor Antagonist (GRA), and Captisol-enabled Iohexol programs.  Dr. Marschke received a PhD in molecular and cellular pathobiology from the Bowman Gray School of Medicine at Wake Forest University and held a postdoctoral research position in the Laboratories for Reproductive Biology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.  He is the author of more than 60 publications.