Genetic Licensing Program Manager
Rachel has been working in the agricultural sector within Australia and globally for over 11 years, having held senior leadership roles within Monsanto and Bayer in the areas of general management, strategy, global marketing, product management and licensing.
Rachel holds a degree in business majoring in business law and marketing, a graduate diploma in public relations, a masters in communication, and an Executive MBA through Melbourne Business School, where she was awarded the Egon Zehnder Leadership Prize.
John Montgomery has 40 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical industry including the US, UK, Australia and major Asian markets including Japan. John was CEO of Alphapharm and Regional Director, Asia Pacific for Merck Generics, and then President, Mylan Asia Pacific for 11 years from 1999 to 2010.
Alphapharm was and remains, the largest pharmaceutical company in Australia as measured by prescription volume. Since then, John was General Manager of Pfizer Established Products for Australia and NZ and now CEO of Montrose Pharma Pty Ltd. Before Alphapharm, he spent 20 years with Warner Lambert in a variety of roles including Vice President, Portfolio Management North America and Regional President Australia and NZ. He was Chairman of the Generic Medicines Industry Association (GMiA) for 6 years, representing the industry to government.
AMr Buttula has had extensive experience and success in investment research, funds management and information technology and has held numerous directorships in a number of public companies. He is currently the current Chairman of biotech companies, Rhythm Biosciences (ASX) and HitIQ (ASX)
Mr Buttula’s executive experience includes co-founder and CEO and Managing Director of IWL Limited, an online financial services company that listed on the ASX in 1999. The company grew from a market capitalisation of $48 million at listing before a takeover in 2007 by Commonwealth Bank of Australia for $373 million. Mr Buttula also founded and was Managing Director of Investors Mutual, prior to which he was a co-founder and director of Lonsdale Securities Limited.
Following his completion of executive duties, Mr Buttula was Non-Executive Chairman of platform and stockbroking provider Investorfirst Limited and led the acquisition of HUB24 Limited (ASX: HUB). More recently, he served on the Board as a non-executive director and Head of Audit & Risk at Imugene Limited (ASX: IMU) between 2014 and 2016.
Richard has been working with natural medicines and health products for over 10 yrs. He worked in a variety of positions before coming CEO of Blackmores Ltd the largest Australian health supplements company. Today, Blackmores is an ASX 200 company with a market capitalisation of $2 billion.
He was on the board of Complementary Medicines Australia for 7yrs and president for 5yrs. Richard understands the go to market strategies, regulatory encymraonment and distrbution channels for vitamin, mineral & nutritional supplements extremely well. He holds a Masters in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge.
CEO / Co-Founder
Joel is the founder of Cymra. He started his journey into the cannabis sector in San Francisco and was one of the first to import cannabis products under SAS Cat B into Australia. An ambitious entrepreneur, Joel helped Cymra Life Sciences become one of the first companies to be awarded a cannabis licence. Most recently, Joel has held senior leadership positions in $20million revenue businesses for public enterprise SAAS companies and previously worked for some of the world’s largest technology businesses. Joel holds a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Sydney, and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from UNSW.
COO & Co-Founder
Simon oversees Cymra Life Sciences facility operations, Tissue Culture services, and breeding programs. He also manages our horticultural research partnerships with Southern Cross University Before co-founding Cymra, Simon was the Managing Director of Australia’s largest plant tissue culture facility for over 10 years. Simon has unrivalled experience in the commercial development of plants from indoor propagation. Simon holds a Bachelor of Business from UON and a Masters of Organisational Development from UTS
CFO / Company Secretary
Simon is a Qualified Chartered Accountant with experience in corporate finance, real estate, mining, services and investment management.
Over 6 years’ experience as a CFO with extensive accounting and financial management experience. Capital transactions experience in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, property transactions, development, asset management and associated analytical, budgeting, modelling and reporting roles.
Previously CFO of ASX listed NuEnergy Gas Limited, an oil and gas exploration and production company and Smoke Alarm Solutions, a property services business. He was also an auditor at KPMG for 5 yrs.
Head of Cultivation
Daniel is the head grower at Cymra with 8 years of experience cultivating medicinal cannabis, majority of this time was spent in the Emerald Triangle in Humboldt CA.
Daniel has also worked as a cannabis cultivation consult in Australia so has gained a great understanding of GMP compliance. Being from the Byron Bay Area he also has broad knowledge of the local growing environments.
Daniel is passionate about organic and regenerative agriculture and with his continuous soil biology studies you’ll find him looking though a microscope or outside enjoying the northern rivers
Jamily is an Agronomist Engineer, passionate about agricultural culture, agronomy, and sustainability. She has knowledge in crop production, soil control, and management, plants, seedling cultivation, plant tissue culture, research, and development. Experience working in an agricultural field and plant biotechnology laboratory activities.
She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Agronomist from UFSC Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil.
Senior Quality Manager
Senior Quality Manager for Cymra Life Sciences, Catherine is responsible for building the Culture of Quality. Over 15 years’ experience in Quality Control and Quality Assurance in GMP manufacturing of microbiological medical devices, pre-clinical trials and complementary medicines in Australia. Also experience in Quality Assurance for Drugs of Abuse testing in UK.
Experience in development and implementation of Quality Management Systems to meet ISO 9001, ISO 17025, ISO 13485, GLP and GMP requirements.
Dr Paul Glare
Paul is the Medical Director of Cymra Pharma, leading the company’s physician engagement strategy. Paul is a vastly experienced medical practitioner and motivated to continually explore new approaches to pain management. He is the Chair of Pain Medicine in the Northern Clinical School at Royal North Shore Hospital and also holds various posts at the University of Sydney including; Director of the Pain Management Research Institute, Head of Pain Medicine in the Faculty of Medicine and Master of Medicine in Clinical Epidemiology.
Dr Paul Nash
Director of Clinical Research
Paul is Cymra Pharma’s clinical research director and works to better understand the effects of cannabis for chronic pain sufferers. With a PHD in Neuroscience from the University of Sydney and a post doctorate from Stanford, Paul brings specialist pain management expertise into this newly legalised industry. Experience assisting biopharma companies with questions and diligence including asset valuation, market opportunity assessment, product development and commercialization.
Dr Richard Chye
Richard Chye is Director of Sacred Heart Supportive & Palliative Care, St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney. He has worked in Palliative Care for more than 28 years, and has integrated community, inpatient, hospital consultative & private palliative care services.
He is Adjunct Professor of Medicine at the University of Notre Dame Australia & the University of Technology, Sydney; and Adjunct Assoc Professor of Medicine at UNSW.
He was integral in the formation of the Australasian Chapter of Palliative Medicine and was awarded the RACP’s highest award, the John Sands medal as his efforts led to the recognition of Palliative Medicine by the Australian government.
He was awarded the inaugural Lyn Taylor Award for Leadership in Palliative Care by his peers for his efforts to develop Palliative Care professionally & operationally in New South Wales.
He has significant patient experience with chronic and complex pain where cannabis could be used as a adjucnt therapy. Previously, he conducted a a clinical trial program at Sacred Heart including using vaporised cannabis to improve cancer anorexia. He is an inaugural member of the Australian Advisory Council of the Medicinal Use of Cannabis.
Susan James has been in pharmaceutical and regulatory consulting for 24yrs.
Sue is currently a Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) external evaluator
Significant experience in evaluation of suitability of clinical (“gap analysis”) for submission to Australian and overseas regulatory agencies.
Sue possesses a Dr of Philosophy, Bachelor of Science, Pharmacology; University of Melbourne
Product Quality and Supply Chain
Matthew draws on his molecular and conventional breeding experience to lead Cymra’s research initiatives. With 20+ years experience in plant breeding across a range of food, pharmaceutical and cosmetic products, Matthew is a hugely successful and recognised breeder. Most notably, he developed new and novel varieties of wheat as part of Value Added Wheat CRC. He has a PHD in Genetics from the University of Sydney.
Dr Ian Paananan
Plant Licensing (PBR) & Plant Health
Ian is an experienced horticultural scientist. He has experience in commercial plant tissue culture, integrated pest and disease management, greenhouse and nursery management and Plant Breeders Rights intellectual property protection.
As a director of an independent consulting business for the last 24 years he has protected nearly 1000 plant varieties from all plant industry groups. Ian has also consulted on plant health issues across a range of horticultural areas. Ian is well positioned to advise on integration of production aspects from breeding to propagation to production and protection.
Ian holds a Degree in Agricultural Science from the University of Sydney and is also well travelled in the world of Permaculture Design and training.
Head of Breeding and Genetics
Jeff’s interest in botanical extracts and extraction started whilst he was an apprentice
chef in his early professional years. In 1994, he moved into the Tea Tree Oil industry on the North Coast NSW where he worked for Thursday Plantations laboratory to survey the wetlands and bush of the area searching and cataloguing plants that had chemical constituents for the control of insects, fungus etc for the Tea Tree Oil industry’s push for organic growing methods. (IPM)
Jeff has designed over 7 differing sizes of extraction units which where sold to over 15 different countries. This led Jeff into the field of consultancy for extraction machinery, specialising in various commodities in developing countries such as PNG, West Timor, Egypt, Fiji, Croatia & Vanuatu.
Jeff’s passion is extraction technology and working with farmers to develop new crops.
He is now developing extraction process’s & methodologies for Cymra in close conjunction with Ashley Dowell for the extraction and isolation of relevant active compounds in the Hemp/Cannabis space.
Seed Production Strategy
Dr Ashley Dowell