Seattle BioMed Adds New Executive Leadership to Accelerate Science

Fri, 06/22/2012

Coffman and Brown join Hassler to form expert administrative leadership team, led by Aderem, to 
support the Institute’s infectious disease research strategies

In his first half year at the helm of Seattle BioMed, President and Director Alan Aderem, Ph.D., has focused on strategic planning, as well as integrating a systems biology approach to the organization’s infectious disease research. To support these efforts, Aderem has assembled an optimal leadership team to ensure the successful integration and promotion of systems biology to advance Seattle BioMed’s scientific research. Louis Coffman, who brings a long history of working for and consulting with independent research organizations, joined Seattle BioMed as senior vice president for business development/strategy on June 1. Seattle BioMed also welcomes Susan Brown as vice president for advancement on June 25. Brown has a strong interest in global health issues and brings years of experience in marketing strategy and public relations to the leadership team. Randy Hassler, who has served as vice president for operations/finance at Seattle BioMed for four years, has been promoted to chief operating officer.

Coffman most recently served as vice president of the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine where he led all aspects of building a stem cell collaboration in San Diego. Prior to that, he served as vice president and chief operating officer at the Institute for Systems Biology and also worked at the Sanford Burnham Institute where he led efforts to build a state-of-the-art research facility. Coffman will now lead initiatives related to Seattle BioMed’s strategic plan, while developing partnerships that provide long-term sustainability.

Brown comes to Seattle BioMed from Russell Investments where she served most recently as the managing director of corporate marketing and communications. In that role she established the global financial firm’s brand positioning and corporate identity internationally. Prior to Russell, Brown was a founding team member of Saffron Brand Consultants – an independent global brand consultancy based in London and Madrid. As a member of Seattle BioMed’s leadership strategy team, Brown will lead fund development and public relations efforts to advance the Institute’s mission and support strategic initiatives.

“Louis and Susan are welcome members of the team,” said Aderem. “Their leadership, in addition to that of Randy Hassler, will provide me with more bandwidth to focus on the vision for this organization and growth of our scientific programs. Importantly, this team brings fresh perspective in the areas of business development, public relations and fundraising – areas that provide critical support for our scientific initiatives.”

Coffman and Brown join Hassler, who has nearly 25 years of experience in the field of biotechnology, including 12 years of increasing responsibility at Amgen before he joined Seattle BioMed in January 2008, as key members of Seattle BioMed’s executive team. With a scientific background, Hassler leads all aspects of Seattle BioMed’s operations, including finance, facilities, human resources and information technology.

"Seattle BioMed is fortunate to have strong leadership," said Todd Patrick, chair of Seattle BioMed's Board of Trustees. "Business development, fundraising and visibility have been targeted areas for accelerating Seattle BioMed's mission for quite some time. With the addition of the exciting and commercially relevant platform that systems biology brings to Seattle BioMed's infectious disease research, the timing is right to bring additional talent to our senior management team.”


Seattle BioMed is the largest independent, non-profit organization in the U.S. focused solely on infectious disease research. Our research is the foundation for new drugs, vaccines and diagnostics that benefit those who need our help most: the 14 million who will otherwise die each year from infectious diseases, including malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. Founded in 1976, Seattle BioMed has nearly 400 staff members. By partnering with key collaborators around the globe, we ensure that our discoveries will save lives sooner. For more information, visit

For more information, contact:
Jennifer Mortensen, Senior Communications Specialist