Board of Directors

Pratik Shah, Ph.D.

Dr. Pratik Shah is the chairman for ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Previously, Dr. Shah was president and chief executive officer of Auspex Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel medicines for people with movement disorders. He first became involved as an investor and served as chairman and executive chairman until he became chief executive officer. Under his leadership, he took the company public and oversaw its growth until its eventual acquisition by Teva Pharmaceuticals for $3.5 billion. Dr. Shah was a partner at Thomas, McNerney & Partners, a healthcare venture capital firm, for almost a decade. Before Thomas, McNerney & Partners, Dr. Shah co-founded two biotechnology companies and was a consultant at McKinsey & Company in San Francisco.

Dr. Shah currently serves and has previously served on numerous boards for both private and public companies. Dr. Shah obtained his Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology as well as his M.B.A. in finance from the University of Chicago.

Richard Lowenthal, M.S., M.B.A.
Co-Founder, President & Chief Executive Officer

Richard Lowenthal is the president, chief executive officer and co-founder of ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

With more than 25 years of biotechnology and pharmaceutical development experience in various roles at both small and large companies, Lowenthal is a seasoned executive with expertise in strategic drug and global development, project leadership, regulatory affairs, quality assurance and product registration of new drugs and biologics in the United States, Europe and Japan.

Dedicated to the support of pharmaceutical, biotechnology and investment companies, in 2007 Lowenthal founded Pacific-Link Regulatory Consulting, where he provides leadership and mentoring on regulatory affairs, clinical development, quality assurance, licensing and investment opportunities. He has also led regulatory efforts at Neurelis since its inception.

Prior to ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Lowenthal held many leadership roles that included vice president of regulatory affairs and quality assurance for Cadence Pharmaceuticals; head of worldwide regulatory affairs, quality assurance and drug safety for Maxim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; vice president of regulatory affairs and quality assurance for AnGes, MG, Inc.; global project leader and global director of regulatory affairs for Janssen Research Foundation; director of regulatory affairs and quality assurance for Somerset Pharmaceuticals Inc.; and new drug review chemist for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in the division of neuropharmacologic drug products and the division of oncology and pulmonary drug products.

Lowenthal holds an M.S. in organic chemistry from Florida State University and an M.S. in executive leadership from the University of San Diego. He has served as past chair of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (San Diego region), as well as member of the USP Biotechnology Expert Committee, chair of the Virology Working group, member of the National Organization of Rare Disease Corporate Council and has worked with various PhARMA and ICH Working Groups.

Robert Bell, Ph.D.
Board Observer

Dr. Robert Bell is the chief scientific officer of ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. He brings more than 30 years of multidisciplinary experience in strategic global business development, product registration and commercialization of new drugs, biologics, devices and generic drug products. Dr. Bell also has extensive expertise with global business collaborations and product development efforts that have resulted in product approvals and new market opportunities.

Prior to joining ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Dr. Bell held various leadership positions in the pharmaceutical industry, serving as vice president, new / strategic drug development at Barr Laboratories, Inc.; vice president, research, development and quality at Somerset Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; vice president, research and development at UDL Laboratories, Inc.; director, research and development at AL Pharma and senior chemist at Carter-Wallace, Inc.

Dr. Bell is an affiliate professor of pharmacy at the College of Pharmacy at the Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University and an adjunct professor of Pharmaceutics, a member of the National Advisory Board and recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the College of Pharmacy, University of Florida. He also been published and has issued eight patents with several pending.

Dr. Bell is a member of the Council of Experts, General Chapters-Biological Analysis and the Joint Standards Subcommittee for United States Pharmacopeia, the American Society of Clinical Oncology, American Urology Association, International Society of Andrology, American College of Clinical Pharmacology and American Chemical Society. He is also an editorial advisory board member for the Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Enliven: Biosimilars and Bioavailability and co-editor for the book Poorly Soluble Drugs: Dissolution and Drug Release. He is also the past chair of the Analysis and Pharmaceutical Quality section for the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists, where he served in various leadership capacities.  

Jonathan Leff
Partner, Deerfield Management & Chairman of the Deerfield Institute

Jonathan Leff is a partner on the Private Transactions team at Deerfield Management and Chairman of the Deerfield Institute. He focuses on venture capital and structured investments in biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.

Prior to joining Deerfield, for more than sixteen years, Leff was with Warburg Pincus, where he led the firm’s investment efforts in biotechnology and pharmaceuticals. He is a member of the boards of several public and private healthcare companies as well as several not-for-profit boards, including the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Foundation, Friends of Cancer Research, the Reagan-Udall Foundation for the Food and Drug Administration and the Columbia University Medical Center Board of Advisors. He previously served as a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), where he led NVCA’s life sciences industry efforts as Chair of NVCA’s Medical Innovation and Competitiveness Coalition (NVCA-MedIC), and also previously served on the Board of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization.

Leff received his A.B. from Harvard University, and earned his M.B.A. from The Stanford Graduate School of Business.


Michael Kelly
Former President of U.S. Operations for Adapt Pharma

Michael Kelly brings more than 25 years of pharmaceutical industry expertise. He recently served as president of U.S. operations for Adapt Pharma, which developed and commercialized NARCAN® (naloxone HCl) Nasal Spray, the first and only needle-free formulation of naloxone approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Health Canada. Under Kelly’s leadership, NARCAN rapidly gained market share in the U.S. from needle-based delivery of naloxone, with sales estimated to reach $200 million to $220 million in 2019, at the time of the acquisition of Adapt Pharma by Emergent Biosolutions in October 2018 for $735 million.  Prior to Adapt, he served as chief executive officer and board member for Covis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Kelly was also a member of the founding management team of Azur Pharma and later, following a strategic merger, served as senior vice president of sales and marketing for Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc. Prior to his tenure at Azur, he served as vice president of commercial operations at Guilford Pharmaceuticals, vice president of sales and marketing at ViroPharma Incorporated, and held various commercial and medical roles at TAP Pharmaceuticals.

Kelly holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration from The College of New Jersey and a Master of Business Administration from Rider University.

Phillip Schneider
Board Member & Chairman of the Audit Committee for Pfenex Inc. Former Chief Financial Officer & Senior Vice President of IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corporation

Phillip Schneider brings decades of financial expertise to ARS Pharmaceuticals to help prepare the company to successfully manage its growth and success. He currently serves as board member and chairman of the audit committee for Pfenex Inc. Most notably, Schneider was chief financial officer and senior vice president for IDEC Pharmaceuticals Corporation. During his tenure, he helped to raise more than $1 billion in financing as the company went from a start-up through its initial public offering, to a company valued in excess of $7 billion. Prior to IDEC, Schneider held various management positions at Syntex Pharmaceuticals Corporation and KPMG, LLC, where he earned his certified public accountant license. Schneider has previously served as audit committee chairman and director for Arena Pharmaceuticals and was board member and chairman of the audit committee for Auspex Pharmaceuticals and Gen Probe Inc. until their respective sales.

Schneider holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Southern California and a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry from the University of California, Davis.

Sarina Tanimoto, M.D., M.B.A.
Board Observer

Dr. Sarina Tanimoto is a co-founder and chief medical officer at ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc., offering more than 18 years of pharmaceutical experience in clinical drug development, including participating in the approval of several medicines.

Prior to joining ARS Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Dr. Tanimoto was chief medical officer at Pacific-Link Regulatory Consulting for eight years. In this role, she supported multiple programs from Phase 1 to Phase 3 clinical trials in various therapeutic areas, including several intranasal products. Before that, Dr. Tanimoto held roles in clinical and business development during her tenure at AnGes Inc. She has also served as a clinical scientist at Roche, where she was involved in global clinical development.

Dr. Tanimoto earned an M.D. from University of Toyama, followed by internal medicine training at the National Center for Global Health and Medicine in Tokyo. She holds an M.B.A. from McGill University.