Our medicines have a profound impact on lives, because everything we do focuses on that goal

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Kyowa Kirin North America is a fully integrated specialty pharmaceutical company, where people work together to understand clinical needs and opportunities for innovation that can result in real advances for patients. Since 2018, the North American organization has received approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to market 3 first-in-class medicines – achievements we share with the scientific, medical, and advocacy communities who contributed greatly to the success of these programs.

Our values drive our achievements

At Kyowa Kirin, our Core Values drive us to do everything we can to answer the needs of patients, their families, and medical professionals. We act consistently with these Core Values in mind – Commitment to Life, Innovation, Integrity, and Teamwork/Wa.

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Commitment to Life

We strive to contribute to the health and well-being of communities by pursuing advances in life sciences and technologies.

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Integrity

We aim to do the right things by being sincere, honest, and ethically consistent in all our business practices and interactions.

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Innovation

We transform lives with passion and excitement — challenging the status quo in all that we do.

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Teamwork/Wa*

We believe in one for all, and all for one by going beyond boundaries and collaborating with our stakeholders.

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*Wa = The Japanese principle of seeking the harmony of the team over personal interests.

Teamwork is at the heart
of our business, and our success

Within our walls and across our industry, collaboration is the way Kyowa Kirin North America does business. Our history of innovation is built on forming and fostering collaborations that accelerate the delivery of new science to patients and heighten the impact of every person involved.

Some collaborations start small and grow to deliver extraordinary results. This has been true throughout Kyowa Kirin’s history. The Kirin Amgen joint venture, which lasted from 1984 until 2017, resulted in the development, worldwide commercialization, and manufacturing of epoetin alfa (marketed as Epogen® in the US, Espo® in Japan), filgrastim (Neupogen® in the US, Gran® in Japan), pegfilgrastim (Neulasta® in the US, G-Lasta® in Japan), and darbepoetin alfa (Aranesp® in the US, NESP® in Japan). Today, Kyowa Kirin continues to enjoy strong, enduring relationships with the La Jolla Institute for Immunology Research and a variety of other business partners focused on advancing discoveries for patients. We also continue to work across our business to find new ideas in need of acceleration.

When you join our team, you become part of an organization that believes in an integrated and collaborative approach to solving problems and achieving goals. We welcome people who share our spirit of innovation and enthusiasm for helping patients to join us.

Kyowa Kirin North America Leadership

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Gary Zieziula, MBA is President and Director on the Board of Directors at Kyowa Kirin North America
Gary Zieziula, MBA
President, North America, Director on Board of Directors
Mr. Gary Zieziula became president, Kyowa Kirin North America effective April 1, 2020; he has been a member of the Kyowa Kirin North America Board of Directors since 2019. Prior to joining Kyowa Kirin full time, Mr. Zieziula was president and managing director at EMD Serono, North America, a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, where he drove the commercialization of major products and the establishment of franchises in oncology, central nervous system (CNS), immunology, fertility, and endocrinology. Mr. Zieziula's experience also includes senior commercial and sales leadership roles at AMAG Pharmaceuticals, Roche, Bristol Myers Squibb, and Merck & Co. Mr. Zieziula is a graduate of the State University of New York at Buffalo and also holds a master of business administration degree from Canisius College.
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Gary Zieziula, MBA
President, North America, Director on Board of Directors
Gary Zieziula, MBA is President and Director on the Board of Directors at Kyowa Kirin North America
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Ana Bastani-Posner is Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer
Ana Bastiani-Posner
Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer
Ms. Ana Bastiani-Posner joined Kyowa Kirin in June 2020 as EVP, chief financial officer for Kyowa Kirin North America. Prior to Kyowa Kirin, Ms. Bastiani-Posner held the position of SVP, finance and administration at the New York Genome Center as a member of its executive team. In the last 20 years, Ms. Bastiani-Posner held positions of increasing responsibility in the pharmaceutical industry at Schering-Plough, Novartis and Allergan across multiple functions including R&D, G&A, commercial finance, and corporate financial planning & analysis. She developed deal models, led Merger and acquisition activities, business integration and synergy efforts through several pharmaceutical deals including the proposed mega-merger of Pfizer-Allergan. She is originally from Brazil where she began her finance career in the banking industry in 1985. She holds a bachelor's degree from the Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul and a master of international management from Thunderbird American Graduate School of International Management.
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Ana Bastiani-Posner
Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer
Ana Bastani-Posner is Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer
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Tara D'Orsi, JD is Executive Vice President, Chief Compliance Officer, and General Counsel
Tara D’Orsi, JD
Executive Vice President, Chief Compliance Officer and General Counsel
Ms. Tara D’Orsi joined Kyowa Kirin in September 2017 and was appointed EVP, chief compliance officer and general counsel in 2019. Prior to joining Kyowa Kirin, Ms. D’Orsi was a member of the Life Sciences group at Lowenstein Sandler LLP, where she advised biotech and pharmaceutical companies on legal and compliance matters throughout a medicine's lifecycle, from development through commercialization. Throughout her career, Ms. D’Orsi has played a leadership role in providing legal and compliance advice designed to minimize risk and achieve her clients’ business objectives. She previously served as the General Counsel of Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Rahway and spent 6 years as Senior Counsel of Reliant Pharmaceuticals, before it was acquired by GlaxoSmithKline in 2007. She began her career with a judicial clerkship in the New Jersey State Superior Court before taking positions in the Life Sciences and Healthcare groups at Gibbons PC and K&L Gates LLP.
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Tara D’Orsi, JD
Executive Vice President, Chief Compliance Officer and General Counsel
Tara D'Orsi, JD is Executive Vice President, Chief Compliance Officer, and General Counsel
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Andrew McKnight, PhD is Chief Scientific Officer of Kyowa Kirin Research
Andrew J. McKnight, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer, Kyowa Kirin Research
Dr. Andrew McKnight joined Kyowa Kirin as chief scientific officer (CSO) in 2015. He currently holds the position of president and CSO at Kyowa Kirin Pharmaceutical Research. He is responsible for early-stage drug discovery within Kyowa Kirin’s Immunology & Allergy division. Dr. McKnight trained as an immunologist. He earned a doctor of philosophy degree from the University of Oxford, followed by post-doctorate work in research labs at Harvard and Oxford. He moved into the biopharma industry with Celltech in the UK (subsequently acquired by UCB) as head of molecular biology and project leader for both inflammatory disease and oncology projects. He joined Pfizer's Global R&D Division in the UK and later transferred to their site in Boston, USA. At Pfizer, Dr. McKnight managed a research group focused on the discovery of fully-human mAbs from individuals who had recovered from bacterial infections and also participated in business development activities while scouting for external scientific alliances with specialized biotechs. In 2012, Dr. McKnight joined AnaptysBio in San Diego, where he was instrumental in reinvigorating their R&D pipeline, resulting in their first independent clinical studies and a successful IPO.
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Andrew J. McKnight, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer, Kyowa Kirin Research
Andrew McKnight, PhD is Chief Scientific Officer of Kyowa Kirin Research
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Ernesto Aycardi
Chief Development Officer
Dr. Aycardi brings more than 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry and clinical development to his role as Chief Development Officer. Before joining KKNA, he served as Xenon Pharmaceuticals’ Chief Medical Officer. Throughout his career, Dr. Aycardi has also held key roles in clinical development, biostatistics, data management, translational medicine and medical research with Teva Pharmaceuticals, EMD Serono, Biogen Idec and Merck & Co. Dr. Aycardi’s has worked in multiple therapeutic areas throughout his career, but has concentrated heavily in Neurology and conditions of the Central Nervous System. He received his medical degree in his home country of Colombia, and was a practicing neurologist there prior to joining industry.
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Ernesto Aycardi
Chief Development Officer
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Eslie Dennis
Eslie Dennis
Chief Medical Officer, Head of North America Medical A
Dr. Eslie Dennis joined Kyowa Kirin in May 2021 as SVP, Chief Medical Officer for Kyowa Kirin North America. Prior to joining this organization, she was Vice President and Head Global Medical Affairs at Ventana/Roche Tissue Diagnostics. She is a physician with 10 years experience in clinical practice (internal medicine and hematology/oncology) and research, and over 20 years international biopharma experience holding positions of increasing responsibility in pharmaceutical and diagnostic organizations at MSD, Novartis and Roche, including leadership of public-private consortia at the Critical Path Institute. Throughout her career, Dr. Dennis has championed innovative science and solutions to address unmet needs for patients and society, particularly addressing healthcare disparities. Dr. Dennis received her MBChB from the Godfrey Huggins School of Medicine in Harare, Zimbabwe, and was the recipient of the Winston Churchill, Margaret Low, and Prankard-Jones Scholarships, as well as the Guy Elliot Bursary.  She is a Fellow of the College of Physicians of South Africa and received her internal medicine and hematology/oncology training at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa.
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Eslie Dennis
Chief Medical Officer, Head of North America Medical A
Eslie Dennis
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Casilda Barnes
Casilda Barnes, PharmD
Vice President, Head of Regulatory Affairs
Dr. Casilda Barnes is VP of Regulatory Affairs at Kyowa Kirin, North America. Dr. Barnes has more than 25 years of global experience in Regulatory Affairs which includes Pre and post approval regulatory strategy, advertising and promotion regulatory compliance which was gained at leading pharmaceutical companies including Pfizer, Celgene, and Schering Plough. She has led biologic and small-molecule NDA/BLA filings in oncology, rare disease, neurology, Immunology and Inflammatory disease areas, at all product lifecycle phases through commercialization. Most notably, Dr. Barnes has provided strategic regulatory leadership to successfully bring market applications from filing through approval and post launch, resulting in treatments to include psoriatic arthritis, migraine headaches , and chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting. Dr. Barnes holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Pharmacy from Howard University and a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the Albany College of Pharmacy. She recently received her Drug Information Association Regulatory Affairs Certificate (RAC).
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Casilda Barnes, PharmD
Vice President, Head of Regulatory Affairs
Casilda Barnes
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Paul Testa, MS, MBA
Executive Vice President, Supply Chain and Operations
Mr. Paul Testa joined Kyowa Kirin in 2019 as EVP for supply chain and operations. Previously, he held senior executive positions in global supply chain and operations at Shire (acquired by Takeda) and Johnson & Johnson — most recently leading 500+ professionals in 25+ countries, leading a supply chain strategic transformation, and helping Shire to grow its revenue from $3 billion to ~$15 billion. He earned a bachelor of science degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a master of science degree from Washington University, and a master of business administration degree from Boston University.
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Paul Testa, MS, MBA
Executive Vice President, Supply Chain and Operations
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Britt Byers, MA
Senior Vice President, Human Resources North America
Britt Byers joined Kyowa Kirin in January 2021 and was appointed SVP, Head of Human Resources for North America. Over a 25 year career, Britt has held senior roles spanning the pharmaceutical industry, with Sanofi and Novartis, as well as in the financial services sector, with Bank of America. Her experience includes a wide range of HR roles with deep expertise as a Strategic Business Partner to Commercial teams, R&D and global functions as well as Shared Service leadership with oversight for HR Operations, Call Center management, Occupational Health, Meeting & Events Management, Multimedia Studio and Travel and Expense. Mrs. Byers also serves as a board member for a private nonprofit agency, JBWS, that provides safety, support and solutions for abuse and aims at the prevention of domestic violence. Britt earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology at Susquehanna University and a Master of Arts in Organizational Psychology at Kean University.
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Britt Byers, MA
Senior Vice President, Human Resources North America
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Nancy Maher
Senior Vice President, Chief Information Officer
Nancy Maher joined Kyowa Kirin as SVP, Chief Information Officer, North America in January 2021. In this role, she is responsible for regional digital and data innovations and collaborations across global and regional initiatives aligned with KKNA plans for growth. Nancy has an extensive record of accomplishment as a global IT leader in the pharmaceutical, medical device, and consumer goods industries, including managing large-scale, technology-enabled business transformation programs. Ms. Maher previously served as VP, Divisional Information Officer for Global Commercial, Medical Affairs, Corporate Functions and Global Digital Technologies for Gilead Sciences. In this role, she managed business relationship management, IT strategy, platform solutions and cross-divisional capabilities. Prior to Gilead, Ms. Maher held senior IT and digital strategy roles at Teva, Allergan, Merck, and Schering-Plough. She holds a B.S. in Marketing from the University of Maryland, and serves in an advisory capacity on several industry and technology-related boards.
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Nancy Maher
Senior Vice President, Chief Information Officer
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Toshio Suda, MS
Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Planning Department
Mr. Toshio Suda is an Executive Vice President at Kyowa Kirin North America (KKNA) and has been responsible for Corporate Strategy and Planning since 2020. Mr. Suda joined Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd. in 1995 and has spent his career since then working for its pharmaceutical business. He worked as a pharmacology researcher in the R&D Division for 8 years, then he worked as a medical representative in the Commercial Division for 5 years at Kyowa Hakko Kogyo Co., Ltd. In 2008, he moved to the Strategic Product Planning Department at the company headquarters in Tokyo and was responsible for the product strategy of the launched or developing products in Immunology and Allergy area at Kyowa Kirin Co., Ltd. In 2019, he moved to Kyowa Kirin International Plc. (EMEA company) and was appointed as an Executive Vice President of Corporate Planning, then he moved to KKNA in 2020.
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Toshio Suda, MS
Executive Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Planning Department
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Naoki Sawada, RPH
Vice President, Global Product Lead for Poteligeo
Mr. Sawada leads efforts to formulate and implement the global product strategy for POTELIGEO® through all teams and operations within the United States. He also serves as a board member for the North America board of directors. Mr. Sawada's experience includes roles leading the global development of POTELIGEO® and Crysvita®, and Japanese and Asian development of NESP® in collaboration with Amgen.
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Naoki Sawada, RPH
Vice President, Global Product Lead for Poteligeo
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Katsuyoshi Tsukii
Vice President, Global Product Lead for istradefylline
Mr. Tsukii was appointed global product leader for istradefylline in 2019. Mr. Tsukii has worked for Kyowa Kirin in Japan for 15 years, where he served as project leader for several CNS development programs. He joined Kyowa Kirin North America in 2016, and has since taken on leadership and planning responsibilities for a global CNS development project as it progresses from development to commercialization.
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Katsuyoshi Tsukii
Vice President, Global Product Lead for istradefylline
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Joseph Zarkoski
Vice President, North America Quality Assurance
Mr. Joseph Zarkoski joined Kyowa Kirin in 2019 as Vice President of Quality Assurance. In this role he leads the North America quality organization responsible for management and disposition of both clinical and commercial products. Mr. Zarkoski brings 30 years of industry experience in quality, manufacturing, and supply chain roles, developing processes and leading teams at both site and global levels. Over the course of his career, Joseph has also held leadership roles at Wyeth, Merck & Co., Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, and Shire. He earned a bachelor of science degree in biology from Villanova University.
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Joseph Zarkoski
Vice President, North America Quality Assurance
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Doug Grant
General Manager, Canada
Doug Grant joined Kyowa Kirin in January 2021 and was appointed the General Manager for Kyowa Kirin Canada.  Additional, he holds the position of Interim Head, NA Commercial Operations for Kyowa Kirin.  Over a 35 year career, Doug has held senior roles spanning the NA pharmaceutical industry, with Bayer, BMS, Pfizer and Marion Merrell Dow.  His experience includes managing product launches and in-market brands within Rare Diseases, Specialty Markets and General Medicine; such as Oncology, Ophthalmology, Cardiovascular, Pulmonary Hypertension and Hematology.  His functional leadership spans Business Unit Leadership, Marketing and Sales Management, Market Access, Pricing, Health Economics and Corporate & Public Affairs.  Mr. Grant received his BSc from York University in Toronto and has served on several industry boards.
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Doug Grant
General Manager, Canada
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Nilay Gami, RPh, MPH
VP, Global Head of PV Operations & NA Regional Head of PV
Mr. Nilay Gami joined Kyowa Kirin in April 2020 and is responsible for the North American PV organization as well as leading PV operations globally. Prior to joining Kyowa Kirin, Nilay obtained extensive patient safety and leadership experience from global safety organizations at Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson. Nilay is a registered pharmacist, obtaining his pharmacy degree from Rutgers University and an MPH in Health Policy & Management from New York Medical College.
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Nilay Gami, RPh, MPH
VP, Global Head of PV Operations & NA Regional Head of PV
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Lauren Walrath, MBA
Vice President, Public Affairs
Lauren Walrath is Vice President, Public Affairs for Kyowa Kirin North America (KKNA). Ms. Walrath's career began 20+ years ago in advertising agencies, launching new products and digital services for Fortune 200 companies, including P&G, Kodak, American Express and TD Ameritrade. Lauren worked for Bristol-Myers Squibb from 2006 to 2014, leading communications and change management for the Global Development & Medical Affairs and Worldwide Commercial organizations, and then growing patient advocacy in support of BMS' Immuno-Oncology franchise. Lauren's passion for biopharma corporate communications led her to senior roles with Atlantis Healthcare and Aquestive Therapeutics before joining Kyowa Kirin in 2019. At KKNA, Lauren manages public relations, social media, employe communications, and advocacy engagements across disease areas. She holds an MBA from Columbia University, a BA with honors from Pennsylvania State University, and sits on the boards of several community organizations.
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Lauren Walrath, MBA
Vice President, Public Affairs

Global directors and officers

“The reason I joined this industry was for the patient – commitment to life is really the most important value to me personally. Our tagline is taking the walk of life one life at a time and making sure that we are doing the right thing for the patient.”

– Sue Smith, VP
Oncology Business Unit

“Innovation is at the forefront of everything we do; the research labs apply novel technologies, sourcing novel ideas from other academic institutions and bringing them into our organization. Of the three products that have been approved, they’ve all been first-in-class, new molecular entities.

That’s innovation.”

– Deb Braccia, VP
Medical Affairs

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