Our expertise, your success

Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions’ client-focused service model starts with a highly experienced and knowledgeable leadership team that collectively brings together more than 100 years of cell therapy and pharmaceutical development, manufacturing, quality, operations and administration experience. Our leaders have worked on some of the major cell therapies of the past 10 years, and have extensive experience in pharmaceutical-grade quality and operations.
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Kazuchika Furuishi, PhD

Chief Executive Officer

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Kazuchika Furuishi, PhD

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Furuishi was appointed General Manager of the Hitachi Chemical Regenerative Medicine Business Sector and Chief Executive Officer of Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions in April 2020. Dr. Furuishi has almost 10 years of experience in research and education (Biochemistry, virology and oncology) at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science as Assistant Professor at Kumamoto University. He has over 17 years of working experience with major global life science companies and senior leadership roles in global organizations. He also has almost six years of experience working for serving Pharma research and development and manufacturing under control of GMP/GLP and business development activities of genotyping testing to prepare for IVD applications. In 2015, Furuishi started a private consulting firm to support establishing legal entities in Japan, business development for CRO and CMO businesses and in a liaison in the life science market for a US consulting firm. Since 2012, he has been involved in the industrialization of regenerative medicine through a variety of activities, including through his prior role at Hitachi Chemical Co., Ltd., as Deputy General Manager of its Regenerative Medicine Business Sector, which he has held since 2017. Furuishi received his Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Science in 1999 from Kumamoto University.

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Jo Anne Valentino

Vice President, Head of Global Quality

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Jo Anne Valentino

Vice President, Head of Global Quality

Jo Anne Valentino is an accomplished Quality Assurance senior leader with demonstrated success in challenging compliance environments including transitions resulting from mergers and acquisitions. She excels at building an energized quality culture that drives business results.

Jo Anne joined Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions, a leading contract development and manufacturing organization for the cell and gene therapy industry, in January 2019 as Global Quality Head. In that position, she is responsible to develop and lead the implementation of the company’s integrated global quality strategy in alignment with the overall global business strategy and Health Authority regulations. She is accountable for ensuring that the company’s quality strategy is translated into global and local executable policies, processes, training programs, and organizational structures, as well as implementing governance processes to monitor the effectiveness of the implementation of the quality systems. She owns responsibility for all QA/QC compliance activities within the company network and provides functional leadership to the quality organization.

For more than seven years, she worked at Novartis in quality positions of increasing responsibility. Most recently she was Executive Director, Quality Head, External Supply Operations, Americas region. In that role she ensured robust quality oversight for more than 100 suppliers and partners through a staff of over 50 senior quality professionals. She supported strategic initiatives in the region, product launches and transfers, business integrations, and global compliance improvement initiatives. She was accountable for thorough resolution of critical quality issues associated with products and facilities and liaising with commercial partners to mitigate impact.

Prior to Novartis, Jo Anne was in Quality leadership positions at Merck and Schering-Plough, as well as product and process development at Reckitt Benckiser. She received her MS in management from Stevens Institute of Technology and her BS in chemical engineering from Manhattan College.

 

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Brian Hanifin

Chief Operating Officer

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Brian Hanifin

Chief Operating Officer

Brian is a pharmaceutical executive with domestic/international experience including internal plant and external supply/contract manufacturing organization (CMO) leadership roles who joined HCATS in August 2018 as Vice President, Head of Technical Operations, North America. Brian was appointed Chief Operating Officer, Hitachi Chemical Regenerative Medicine Business Sector in April 2020.

Brian worked for Novartis Pharmaceutical for 23 years progressing his career from manufacturing/packaging supervisory roles to site head and North America/ Americas regional head roles. Brian retains deep knowledge, understanding and executional experience in plant start up, plant closures, operational integrations, operational transformations, lean implementations, organizational restructuring, change management and operational quality remediations with full P&L responsibility.

Brian is a respected hands-on operations leader excelling in collaborative leadership, strategic vision, and communication acumen to all levels of an organization. Brian is skilled at developing effective and efficient business processes, via hands-on involvement and cross-functional team engagement.

Brian is a process-driven expert who enables organizations to excel by providing a vision, short- / long- term strategy, change management plans, communication/engagement of key stakeholders, collaboratively developed action plans, instituting governance models and KPI oversight.

Most recently, Brian has been President & CEO of HaniPharm, LLC. Prior to his career at Novartis Brian has held various operational lead roles at Wyeth/Pfizer.

Brian holds a BS Human Resources from Marist College.

Thomas Heathman, PhD

Thomas Heathman, PhD

Business Leader, North America

Thomas Heathman, PhD

Thomas Heathman, PhD

Business Leader, North America

Tom joined Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions ("HCATS", formerly PCT) in November 2015 as a Business Development Associate and currently acts as Business Leader. In this role, Tom is responsible for clients’ customer experience as well as the growth, profitability and operational excellence.

Tom’s PhD focused on developing process control strategies for the large-scale manufacture of human mesenchymal stem cells in bioreactors. During his PhD program, Tom was actively involved in business development activities which included leading multiple contract research projects with industry partners, facilitating collaborative projects in regenerative medicine between the UK and Japan, and enabling collaborative presentations and publications. Tom has a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Bath, UK and previously worked as an intern Process Engineer at the BP Research and Technology Centre in the UK where he was responsible for driving the implementation of two key pilot plant projects, leading teams of process specialists to successfully deliver these projects, on time and on budget.

Tom has received a number of prestigious awards in the field, authored multiple original research publications and book chapters on the subject of cell therapy manufacture, and holds a number of committee positions in regenerative medicine.