Leadership

Board of Directors

Jim Heppell, BSc, LLP
Chairman

 
Mr. Heppell was the founder, CEO and director of BC Advantage Life Sciences I Fund, which won the Canadian Venture Capital Deal of the Year Award in 2006 and had the highest returns of any retail venture fund in Canada for five years in a row. He worked for six years with the law firm, Fasken Martineau DuMoulin, during which time he was seconded for six months to the British Columbia Securities Commission. He then became President and Chief Executive Officer of Catalyst Corporate Finance Lawyers, a boutique corporate finance law firm that assisted life science and technology companies. He is a past member of the Securities Policy Advisory Committee to the British Columbia Securities Commission and past chairman of the Securities Section of the Canadian Bar Association (B.C. Branch). Mr. Heppell is a director of a number of public and private life science companies.

Bobby Sukhwinder Rai, BSc. Biochem., BSc. Pharm., RPh. Director

Mr. Rai has over 20 years of experience operating “The Medicine Shoppe” Pharmacies in Greater Vancouver, Canada. In 1998, he and his partners pioneered the online pharmacy business in the USA. Mr. Rai introduced HIV point of care testing into community pharmacies and introduced lab testing to pharmacies, including chronic kidney disease screening using the HealthTab technology. Both were firsts in Canada. Mr. Rai is a member of the Alumni UBC Advisory Council representing the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science. Mr. Rai is also Chairman and CEO of Canadian Pacific Global Pharmaceuticals and Chairman of its subsidiary PharmaCanada Inc.

Punit Dhillon, BA Hons. Director

 
Mr. Dhillon is the co-founder and former CEO of OncoSec Medical Incorporated, a developer of cancer immunotherapies to treat solid tumors. Mr. Dhillon serves as a director and Audit Committee Chair for Emerald Bioscience Inc. and a director for Arch Therapeutics Inc. Prior to OncoSec, from 2003-2011 he served as VP Finance and Operations at Inovio Pharmaceuticals. He has led and assisted in raising over $500 million through financings, M&A deals and several licensing transactions with large pharma. His management experience spans corporate finance, M&A integration, in-licensing of key intellectual property, strategy implementation, corporate transactions, and collaborations with leading universities and global disease specific opinion leaders. Mr. Dhillon also co-founded and is the Director of the Young Entrepreneur Leadership Launchpad (YELL), a registered Canadian charity that partners with schools to support entrepreneurial learning. In 2018, he was awarded the Biocom Life Science Catalyst Award.

Scientific Advisory board

Gaetano Morello, ND

 
Dr. Morello is an accomplished clinician with first-hand experience in the clinical and medical application of cannabinoids. Dr. Morello practices at the Complex Chronic Disease Program at Woman’s Hospital in Vancouver, Canada and serves on the Quality Assurance Committee for the College of Naturopathic Physicians of British Columbia and other health and medical panels. The author of Cleanse: The Ultimate Inside-Out Approach and The Fiber Miracle, he is also a contributing author to A Textbook of Natural Medicine, Alive Magazine, Viva Magazine and other publications. He has a BSc in cell biology/nutrition from the University of British Columbia and a Doctorate in naturopathic medicine from Bastyr University.

Alasdair Barr, PhD

 
Dr. Barr is a professor at the University of British Columbia, with a focus on mental health and addictions research using a multidisciplinary and translational approach that spans from laboratory to clinic. Dr. Barr maintains active programs in both clinical and preclinical research.

Giovanni Appendino, PhD

 
Dr. Appendino has studied cannabis and cannabinoids for more than 15 years and is regarded by the global scientific community as one of the world’s most influential thought leaders in cannabinoid research. He is the Director of Research and Development at Indena SpA and Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the University of Eastern Piedmont in Italy. Dr. Appendino was the local coordinator of three European research programs, and his research on natural products chemistry focuses on medium-sized cyclic compounds, such as cannabinoids. He also serves as Editor in Chief of the scientific journal Fitoterapia, and belongs to the publishing advisory board of several journals for organic chemistry and natural products. Dr. Appendino authored more than 250 articles and 10 book chapters, and holds six patents (four related to cannabinoids).

James T. McCracken, MD

 
Dr. McCracken is the Joseph Campbell Professor of Child Psychiatry and Director of the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. An active clinician who has been included in America’s Top Doctors, Best Doctors and Super Doctors listings for more than a decade, Dr. McCracken is an expert in child psychiatry and serves on the editorial board of the journal Molecular Autism.

RIAZ BANDALI

President & Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Bandali’s expertise in global operations, strategy development, driving innovation, M&A, and investment management has been developed over a 25-year career in the life sciences sector spanning contract clinical and research services, analytical instrumentation, lab services and venture capital.

He holds an Advanced Management Program Degree from Harvard Business School, a Master of Business Administration from McGill University, and a Bachelor of Science from the University of British Columbia. He is an innovative business leader who has built strategic and operating plans that have resulted in rapid growth and significant profitability enhancement. He has managed businesses and operations with a global footprint and has led teams of over 900 people.

Mr. Bandali’s previous experience includes serving as President, Early Phase Clinical Services and Translational Science, Syneos Health; President, Early Stage Development, as well as Chief Innovation Officer, inVentiv Health Clinical; Senior Vice President, Strategy and Business Development, AB Sciex and Molecular Devices (part of Danaher Corporation); Senior Vice President, Strategy, Legal and Corporate Development, MDS Analytical Technologies; and Vice President and General Manager, Global Early Stage Development, MDS Pharma Services. He was also Venture Partner and Vice President at MDS Capital and has served on the boards of private and public companies.

Moe Jiwan

Chief Operating Officer

Mr. Jiwan is a data driven business leader with over 20 years experience in strategic development , sales and operations management , e-commerce, and developing data and business intelligence solutions. Before joining Emerald, he served in senior leadership positions, including Chief Information Officer and Chief Customer Officer, for established cannabis and healthcare companies, including senior roles at TerrAscend Corp and Shopper’s Drug Mart. With a strong marketing and customer orientation, he has strongly focused on operational excellence and implementing processes to function faster, smarter, and leaner.

Rebecca Wong

Senior Vice President, Quality and Regulatory Affairs

Ms. Wong has over 30 years of quality and regulatory management experience in pharmaceutical and life science companies regulated to Canadian, US, European and international requirements. She has been responsible for establishing quality systems and ensuring regulatory compliance through all phases of product development from GPP, GLP, GCP, GMP for cannabis, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, combination products and biologicals. She was previously Executive Director of Quality Assurance at Novelion Therapeutics (formerly QLT Inc.) and worked for life science companies including MDS Nordion, Cangene Corporation, and Biomira Inc. Ms. Wong earned a B.Sc. (Microbiology) from the University of Alberta.

Nick Mosgrove

Vice President, Sales and Marketing

Mr. Mosgrove has over 15 years of sales and marketing leadership experience in commercial plan development and implementation, building top brands, and improving supply chain efficiencies in the Canadian alcohol beverage and cannabis sectors. He has led sales teams that enhanced revenue growth, gross margins and profitability, and key account satisfaction. Most recently, Mr. Mosgrove served as VP Sales & Marketing for TerrAscend Canada. Prior to this he held provincial sales manager roles in Ontario with Campari Canada, Escalade Wines & Spirits, Select Wine & Spirits and Bacardi Canada.

Jenn Hepburn

Chief Financial Officer

Ms. Hepburn has over a decade of experience in accounting and finance and is an experienced manager of privately and publicly traded manufacturing and mining businesses operating in Canada and the USA. Prior to joining Emerald, Ms. Hepburn was the Director of Finance and Administration at bioLytical Laboratories Inc., a medical diagnostics manufacturer. Before that, she held controller positions at junior gold and silver mining companies Northern Vertex Mining Corp., Kootenay Silver Inc. and Theia Resources Ltd. Ms. Hepburn earned a BBA from Simon Fraser University and her certification from the Certified Management Accountants of British Columbia.