Business people, Aug. 7, 2018

August 7, 2018

Thornburg Investment

Thornburg Investment Management in July announced three new hires on the firm’s global distribution team.

Joseph Feloney joined Thornburg as head of strategic relationships. Prior to joining Thornburg, Feloney was a managing director at Jackson National Life Distributors’ Private Wealth & Trust Group. In his new role as head of strategic relationships, Feloney manages a seven-person team in charge of acquiring, retaining and building assets through key partner firms.

William Loehning joined the firm in a newly created position as head of Institutional Advisor Channel. Loehning joined Thornburg from Putnam Investments where he worked with registered investment advisers as a senior regional investment consultant. As head of Institutional Advisor Channel, Loehning oversees a new three-person team that will provide dedicated coverage to large registered investment advisers, bank trust platforms and multi-family offices.

David Rentfrow joined as head of internal sales. Rentfrow most recently was managing director with Crossmark Global Investments. As head of internal sales, Rentfrow leads an experienced 17-person internal sales team.

Pebble Labs

Pebble Labs Inc., a Northern New Mexico biotechnology firm, in July announced the appointment of three medical industry executives to its management team.

Rick DeRose, the new director of product innovation, has more than 25 years of experience in agricultural biotechnology at Syngenta and Bayer. He was co-inventor of the first commercialized Roundup Ready Corn varieties. He received a doctorate in medical microbiology and immunology from Wake Forest School of Medicine.

Dr. Anne Lo, the new director of strategic development, trained as a veterinary surgeon and worked in a number of clinical positions. Lo most recently was with Horizons Ventures based in Hong Kong, where she primarily covered science and health care investments. She received her bachelor’s and bachelor of veterinary medicine degrees from the University of Edinburgh and a doctorate from the University of Cambridge.

Tichafa “Tich” Munyikwa, the new director of regulatory affairs, has more than 20 years’ experience in major ag biotechnology companies in positions such as senior research scientist and global regulatory expert. Munyikwa received his doctorate in cell and molecular biology from Wageningen University, Netherlands.

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Bette Korber, a theoretical biologist at Los Alamos National Laboratory, recently was honored with the 2017 Richard P. Feynman Innovation Prize for her ground-breaking HIV vaccine designs. Several of Korber’s vaccine designs have transitioned to the commercial sector. Janssen, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, is testing one of her designs, called “mosaic,” in a clinical trial called the Imbokodo Study being conducted in South Africa. If successful, the vaccine could be one of the first to prevent the HIV infection.

Los Alamos National Laboratory researchers Laura Lilley and Yuxiang Chen also were recognized for outstanding presentations at DisrupTech, an annual event hosted by Richard P. Feynman Center for Innovation at Los Alamos and New Mexico Angels that offers scientists a platform to present their work to businesses and the community.

Chen, a postdoctoral researcher, won the Most Fundable Technology award for his presentation, “NanoCluster Beacons: Fast Testing for Food Safety.” The $25,000 funding award will help Chen improve his technology that quickly and accurately tests pathogens in food.

Lilley received the “Best Pitch” award for her presentation, “Nuclear Antibiotics: Winning the War on Bugs.” Lilley developed a small molecule that nukes microbial agents.

DisrupTech was hosted in July by Los Alamos’ Richard P. Feynman Center for Innovation, the New Mexico Angels investor group and the New Mexico Start-Up Factory.

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