Matthew H.J. Kim, J.D.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Inspired by both his parents’ battle to overcome their affliction with oral cancer, Matthew H.J. Kim founded Vigilant Biosciences, Inc. in 2011 and serves as the company’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
A seasoned business and legal executive as well as serial entrepreneur, Kim brings more than 20 years of experience encompassing intellectual property management, technology transfer, business and corporate development, and various product launches to his leadership role at Vigilant Biosciences. As CEO, Matthew leads the company’s strategic and fundraising efforts including the financing of approximately $12 million+ to date and leveraging a further estimated $5 million+ in nondilutive financing procured by the University of Miami to advance the sciences ultimately and exclusively licensed to Vigilant Biosciences. This licensed platform technology serves as the foundation of the initial products under commercialization as well as additional products in the research and development pipeline for the company.
Prior to starting Vigilant Biosciences, Mr. Kim was involved with the founding of several start-ups, including the first spin-off company from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as a strategic intellectual property asset management consulting group. He also provided strategic consulting for numerous biotechnology therapeutic and diagnostic, consumer and technology companies. His development and commercialization leadership experience for point-of-care and lab-based diagnostics products include an innovative continuous glucose monitor system, a painless point-of-care bilirubin detection for jaundice, a fluorescent-based diabetes screening system, and a novel imaging technology for cervical cancer screening.
Mr. Kim received his bachelor’s degree in Biology from Washington University in St. Louis and his Juris Doctorate from Georgia State University. He is licensed to practice law in Georgia and before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. In 2015, Kim was honored by BioFlorida with the Weaver H. Gaines Entrepreneur of the Year Award for his extraordinary contributions to the growth of Florida’s life sciences industry in the leadership of a company.
Elizabeth Franzmann, M.D.
Scientific Founder and Chief Scientific Officer
Elizabeth Franzmann, M.D. serves as the Scientific Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Vigilant Biosciences. Her innovative clinical research on selective salivary biomarkers for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma serves as the foundation for Vigilant Biosciences’ product line.
Dr. Franzmann’s work has been funded by foundations as well as state and federal agencies with the resulting research published in numerous, well-respected, and peer-reviewed journals. In addition to her clinical research activities, Dr. Franzmann is certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology specializing in otolaryngology and head and neck surgery as an Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Dr. Franzmann has been recognized as one of the “Best Doctors in America,” an honor that reflects fellow physicians considering her to be one of the most skilled in her field and most qualified for reviewing complex medical conditions. Dr. Franzmann received her Bachelor of Science and Doctorate of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Michael Donovan Ph.D., M.D.
Chief Clinical Officer
Michael Donovan Ph.D., M.D. serves as the Chief Clinical Officer of Vigilant Biosciences. Dr. Donovan is board-certified in anatomic and clinical pathology and pediatric pathology with extensive experience in designing and implementing clinical studies. He has spearheaded the utilization of multiplex tissue and fluid-based assays and coupled mathematical applications to produce clinically relevant diagnostic/predictive/prognostic outcome models for a variety of tumor types and disease states. Along with his clinical duties, Dr. Donovan also serves as a Professor of Experimental Pathology and Director of the Biorepository and Pathology core at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai, New York City, New York.
In addition to an academic career at Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital, Dr. Donovan has over 20 years’ experience in the biotechnology industry, serving in various senior management roles at Millennium Pharmaceuticals and Incyte Pharmaceuticals. He most recently served as Chief Medical Officer of MetaStat, Inc. and Chief Medical Officer of Exosome Diagnostics, Inc. where he served as laboratory director and was responsible for the implementation and execution of several clinical trials.
Dr. Donovan graduated from Rutgers University with a B.S. in zoology, a M.S. in endocrinology and a Ph.D. in cell and developmental biology with post-doctoral studies at Harvard Medical School. He received his M.D. from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.
Vice President - Regulatory Affairs, Quality Assurance, and Operations
Sally Bowden leads Vigilant Biosciences in the regulatory, operations and quality endeavors, bringing more than 20 years of experience in the quality and regulatory fields of medical devices, companion diagnostics, education and health care systems. She also serves as the General Manager for OncAlert Labs, Vigilant’s CLIA lab.
She has served in executive positions as Vice President of Quality Systems and Process Improvement at Ventana Medical Systems and as Vice President of Quality and Regulatory Compliance at Roche Diagnostics Corporation. She has served as an Associate Professor for Purdue University School of Engineering and Technology where she developed the Quality Management Curriculum within the Mechanical Engineering Technology department. Sally is a graduate of Purdue University School of Engineering and has also achieved her MBA. Sally founded Samco & Associates, Inc. in 2009 to provide consulting for companies interested in developing quality systems that meet FDA and global requirements and re-engineer them for efficient, effective compliance in the medical device field for all classes. In addition, Sally has helped to pioneer the Companion Diagnostic process in collaboration with pharmaceutical and diagnostic firms while building strong relationships with the applicable regulatory agencies.
Robert T. Hamilton, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
Robert T. Hamilton serves as the company’s Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Hamilton, a former Big-Four CPA with 15+ years of public company and venture-backed private portfolio company experience having worked with companies in e-commerce, health and fitness, technology and retail/wholesale industries.
Prior to Vigilant Biosciences, Mr. Hamilton served as CFO of Bridgevine, Inc., a privately held and venture-backed e-commerce solution, that assists Fortune 500 marketers and advertisers with new customer acquisition through a closed-loop platform. He helped Bridgevine complete a financial turnaround and grow revenues profitably to $50+MM. Previously, as CFO of eDiets, Inc. (formerly NASDAQ- DIET), a leading provider of online weight loss solutions serving over 2 million paying clients, he successfully oversaw its B2C and B2B revenues grow 25 times in a profitable manner and led the company’s transition from a self-funded private company to a NASDAQ listing. Mr. Hamilton began his career as an auditor with Arthur Andersen, LLP in Boston. Progressing to audit manager, he serviced multinational SEC and non-public clients in the high technology, manufacturing, retail/wholesale distribution, and hospitality industries. Mr. Hamilton is a Certified Public Accountant and received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Merrimack College.