WE MAKE IT.
Our leadership team may not be what you’d expect from a CMO of our size. We’re personally involved in responding to your needs from day one and throughout the lifetime of your project.
Because we operate within a simple management structure, we are able to act nimbly to overcome challenges, keeping your project moving forward quickly and efficiently. We are here to help you navigate the best path forward based on our experience. However, we are also flexible and able to work with you in any capacity you prefer. After all, this is about you.
President & Chief Executive Officer
Joe is a proven leader in the pharmaceutical industry and brings more than 20 years of wide-ranging experience in sales force development and management, marketing, financial analysis, and negotiation to the Avara organization. As President & Chief Executive Officer of the Avara Group, Joe is responsible for all aspects of executive management for Avara’s global manufacturing facilities.
Prior to joining Avara, Joe was the Vice President of Strategic Partnerships at Patheon Pharmaceuticals, where he was responsible for managing top revenue strategic clients for the Pharma Services division as well as the development of the organization’s Government selling strategy and execution. Joe’s extensive experience with strategic deal oversight, combined with his ability to manage business development on a global scale makes him well-positioned to lead Avara’s Executive Team.
Joe holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from Loyola University and an MBA from Northwestern University’s J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management with an emphasis in Marketing, Management and Strategy, and Organization Behavior. Joe has served as an executive officer of DCAT and served as the association’s President in 2010.
Chief Financial Officer
Anup Gupta comes to Avara with over 30 years of global experience in finance, strategy, M&A, and operations. He is a proven leader and mentor with an international and entrepreneurial outlook and strong ability to lead large and diverse teams across a wide range of projects and objectives.
As Chief Financial Officer, Anup is responsible for maintaining the financial strength of Avara, working closely with the commercial and business development teams to identify and finance projects that promote sustainability and growth. He is an integral member of the company’s leadership team and works closely with the board and other external stake holders.
Before joining Avara, Anup served an independent consultant and industry advisor, where he worked with private equity investors focused on healthcare services and HCIT. He has been a Chief Financial Officer of three healthcare products and services companies, and Chief Strategy Officer of one of the world’s largest and most global Clinical Research Organizations. Anup’s early career spanned consulting on IT, eBusiness, and strategy with the likes of Accenture, Scient, and The Boston Consulting Group.
Anup holds Bachelor of Science in Computer and Information Sciences from The National University of Singapore and an MBA in Finance and Strategic Management from The Wharton School, where he graduated as a Palmer Scholar.
Chief Operations Officer
Larry is a proven leader with over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry. As COO, he is responsible for managing all aspects of the operational and administrative functions for the Avara Organization. He has a strong focus on operational excellence within all facets of OSD manufacturing and packaging.
Larry has held various management positions in laboratories, quality assurance, and information technologies and has been heavily involved in leading global initiatives for multiple pharmaceutical companies, including Avara. This, combined with his skill at managing complex teams across multiple aspects of manufacturing technologies, makes Larry well-positioned for the COO role.
Larry holds a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from Oklahoma State University.
Vice President, Commercial Operations
Kellie brings more than 10 years of experience in pharmaceutical services, including business development, quoting, contracts, deal strategy, and negotiation to the Avara organization. As the Avara Group’s Vice President, Commercial Operations, Kellie is responsible for all aspects of the commercial management of Avara’s global pharmaceutical manufacturing services.
Prior to joining Avara, Kellie was responsible for supporting the Commercial activities for Development and Commercial projects across the Strategic Account portfolio at Patheon, where she was instrumental in the design and implementation of many aspects of strategic account management processes. In addition, she has served in a lead role in key commercial negotiations. Kellie has also held positions as an attorney and litigator for private law firms, as well as served as corporate counsel.
Kellie holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Dietetics from Indiana University and a Juris Doctorate from Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis with a concentration in Health Law.
FLOR D. RIVERA DAVILA
Quality Assurance / Regulatory Affairs
Flor has more than 22 years of experience in pharmaceutical plant management and operations, with a strong focus on quality and compliance.
Prior to becoming Vice President of Quality Assurance / Regulatory Affairs, Flor served as Director of Quality for Avara's Arecibo site. During that time, she successfully oversaw and implemented the site’s business continuity plan and quality actions.
Flor holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus and holds an MT certification from the Puerto Rico Department of Health and the American Association of Clinical Pathologists.
Vice President and Site Director, Liscate, Italy
Andrea is a proven leader with over 20 years of pharmaceutical industry experience. As Site Director for Avara’s sterile injectables site in Liscate, Italy, he led the transition of the site out of the Pfizer network, successfully integrating it into the Avara CMO network. Previously, he served as Site Integration Leader for Liscate as part of the Pfizer acquisition of Hospira Inc., and, earlier, as Director of Materials Management for Pfizer’s Ascoli site.
Earlier in his career, Andrea served as Finance Director for Pfizer’s Ascoli and Nerviano sites, and, in his prior role as Director of Finance, he led the integration of Pharmacia into Pfizer. Andrea began his career with Pfizer at the former Pharmacia & Upjohn headquarters in Milan as a Business Control Analyst.
Andrea is Certified in Production and Inventory Management (CPIM) and is a Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP). He has a degree in Business Economics from the Politecnico delle Marche Institute and an MBA in Business Management from ISTAO - Istituto Adriano Olivetti, Ancona / Italy.
Vice President and Site Director, Norman, Oklahoma
Debbie has been instrumental to the success of Avara’s OSD site in Norman, Oklahoma, where she has acquired more than 17 years of pharmaceutical industry experience through leadership roles of increasing responsibility in process engineering, project management, engineering and validation.
Debbie has extensive experience leading complex teams in OSD manufacturing technologies. In her previous role as Senior Director, Engineering and Technical Services, she oversaw Avara’s technical services and engineering departments, including the Norman site’s facilities. In addition, she directed all aspects of the client-facing portion of the business, including project management of new business, technical execution of product transfers and validation, and ongoing technical support for commercial products.
Debbie holds a Bachelor and Master of Science in Industrial Engineering from the University of Oklahoma.
JUAN E. POLANCO
Vice President and Site Director, Arecibo, Puerto Rico
Juan is a proven leader with over 21 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in the areas of manufacturing, packaging, logistics, supply chain, and warehouse management. He is a results-driven professional who brings decades of hands-on experience managing plants in a regulated environment to his leadership role at Avara’s Arecibo facility.
Prior to joining Avara, Juan worked in both internal- and external-facing roles of increasing responsibility at such companies as Proctor & Gamble, Warner Chillcott, Actavis, Allergan, Teva, and Baxter. Throughout his career, Juan’s focus has been on process improvement and goal alignment. His ability to engage employees, as well as leverage his organizational and communications skills has enabled him to be successful in achieving business goals in a wide variety of settings.
Juan holds a Bachelor of Business Administration, with a major in Management from the University of Puerto Rico, as well as a Master of Business Administration with a special focus on Global Management from Phoenix University.
Vice President and Site Director, Aiken, South Carolina
Over the course of his 20-year career in the pharmaceutical manufacturing and packaging industry, Keith has gained experience in technical support, technology transfers, process engineering, packaging engineering, validation, and capital project management in both OSD and aseptic processing facilities.
Before assuming his current role as VP & Site Director of the Aiken facility, he served as the site’s Director of Technical Services. In that role, he oversaw new business procurement, customer relationship management, and manufacturing, packaging, and validation support
Mohan is a proven pharmaceutical and biotechnology leader with over 29 years of global leadership and technology experience. He has a successful record of developing and leading global organizations, achieving strategic objectives, developing talent and delivering tangible business results across the pharmaceutical, technology, automotive and engineering industries. Mohan has the demonstrated ability to help IT departments become value drivers for their organizations.
Mohan is both a proven turnaround architect and a growth-oriented leader who can develop entire IT organizations. Recently, he led the development of IT strategies for multiple supply chains of GSK and Medimmune (AstraZeneca). This included global ERP, supply chain, commercial, business and regulated environments coupled with a vendor partnership operating model.
Mohan holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from University of Mysore, India.
We value our client relationships. Our vision for Avara and the industry at large centers on collaboration and the shared goal of bringing quality products to patients.
Avara is a contract manufacturing organization whose global operations are built around the needs, priorities and objectives of our clients.
Avara Pharmaceutical Services, Inc.
3300 Marshall Avenue
Norman, OK 73072
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