Healthcare >> CEO Interviews >> June 2, 2002

Thomas Okarma – Geron Corporation (gern)

DR. THOMAS B. OKARMA was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of Geron Corporation in July, 1999. Dr. Okarma served as Geron's Vice President of Research and Development from May 1998. From December 1997 until May 1998, Dr. Okarma was Vice President of Cell Therapies at Geron. Prior to joining Geron Corporation in 1997, Dr. Okarma was a Senior Vice President at Rhone-Poulenc Rorer. In 1995, Rhone-Poulenc Rorer acquired Applied Immune Sciences, Inc., which was founded by Dr. Okarma in 1985. By the time of its acquisition by Rhone-Poulenc Rorer, AIS was in advanced cell therapy human clinical trials in cancer and bone marrow transplantation and in early gene therapy human trials in breast cancer. Dr. Okarma was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of AIS from 1991 until its acquisition. Prior to founding AIS, Dr. Okarma was a member of the faculty of the Stanford University School of Medicine where he also received both his PhD and MD degrees. He is the author of over 50 peer-reviewed publications on cell and gene therapy and is an inventor on numerous patents in the field. Profile
TWST: Could we begin with a brief historical sketch of the company and a

picture of what you're doing at the present time?

Dr. Okarma: The name of the company implies that we focus on aging.