Management

Fred Colen, President and Chief Executive Officer

Fred Colen is a seasoned business executive with years of experience leading small, medium and large medical device businesses throughout the world. Fred has been a successful business innovator in commercialization of new medical technology products. He was President/CEO of BeneChill, a brain cooling company and President of the Boston Scientific Cardiac Rhythm Management Group. Additionally he served as Boston Scientifics’ Chief Technology Officer for eight years. Born and raised in the Netherlands, Fred obtained a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering with specialization in BioMedical Technology from the RWTH Aachen, Germany. He has served on several Boards: Mölnlycke Healthcare, Middle Peak Medical and College of Science & Engineering at the University of Minnesota.

Bill Little, Chief Operating Officer

Bill has extensive leadership experience in both interventional cardiology and structural heart disease. Prior to joining Neovasc, he served on the leadership team at Abbott Vascular. During his tenure at Abbott, Mr. Little worked as Divisional Vice President of Global Marketing, and Head of Customer and New Market Insights. He previously served as Vice President of Global Cardiovascular Therapies for St. Jude Medical and joined Abbott through the acquisition of the company. While at St. Jude Medical, Bill oversaw marketing and strategy for the structural heart and vascular portfolios. Prior to joining St. Jude Medical, he was Vice President, Global Marketing at Bard Peripheral Vascular and he spent 13 years at Boston Scientific in a variety of domestic and international sales and marketing roles focused primarily on cardiovascular interventions. Bill holds a B.S. in Business Administration and Marketing from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Christopher Clark, Chief Financial Officer

Chris has almost 20 years finance and accounting experience in public practice and in public and private companies, most recently focused in the medical device sector. Previous experience includes financial leadership roles with large automotive and telecom firms in which he developed deep expertise in the development and management of sophisticated financial systems. A highly sought after consultant for biotechnology startups, Chris accepted the role of Chief Financial Officer at Neovasc and was instrumental in the initial and ongoing development of Neovasc as a publicly traded company. He received his designation as a Chartered Accountant from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales and articled with KPMG before moving to Canada from England in 1998. He has an honors degree in Economics from Swansea University and a post graduate diploma from Keble College, Oxford.

Aaron J. Chalekian, Vice-President of Product Development & Manufacturing Engineering

Aaron has been in the medical device industry for nearly 15 years. His experience includes early and late stage product development cycles for coronary stenting systems, transcatheter heart valves (TAVR & TMVR), surgical heart valves & repair technologies, along with numerous other catheter based and imaging technologies. Prior to Neovasc, Aaron served in various roles, including management positions within Research & Development and support of Manufacturing activities at Oakriver Technology, Boston Scientific and St. Jude Medical. In addition to his role at Neovasc, Aaron has actively served on the ISO 5840 committee (Surgical and Transcatheter valves) for nearly a decade as a committee member and most recently, a leader of a task force as it relates to the TMVR space. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Vicki Bebeau, Vice President of Clinical and Regulatory Affairs

Vicki has been a leader in the planning and execution of clinical trials for more than 18 years, fulfilling leadership roles with multinational cardiovascular device firms including St. Jude Medical, Boston Scientific, and Medtronic. Her efforts have contributed to the adoption of some of the industry’s most novel devices in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, and Japan as she has planned and directed numerous successful clinical studies of prosthetic heart valves and other cardiovascular devices in support of IDE, PMA, and post market programs to support regulatory approvals. Vicki holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Bethel College, and she is a Registered Nurse whose specific areas of clinical research have included heart valves (open heart and percutaneous), vascular access and closure devices, FFR, OCT, renal denervation, and hypothermia.

John Panton, Vice-President of Quality

John Panton has over 30 years of engineering experience spread over the Total Product Life Cycle, in small, medium and large organizations and across different industrial sectors; medical devices, semiconductor, oil and gas, telecommunications, consumer electronics and military avionics. In England, John held various engineering roles of increasing responsibility specializing in New Product Introduction; in R&D, product and process design and development, manufacturing engineering, process engineering and product engineering. In 2005, John started his Canadian career as a Quality professional, as the Quality Assurance Manager of a start-up company serving semiconductor Fortune 500 customers. He then moved to a Class 2 reusable medical device company initially as Quality and Regulatory Manager and then later to Global Director of Quality Systems, where he had responsibility for sites in Canada, US, Europe and Australia. John joined Neovasc in May 2015 as Director of Quality Systems and moved to VP of Quality in November, 2017. John holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Microelectronics Technology and Applications from Middlesex University, and a Higher National Diploma in physics from Portsmouth Polytechnic.

Prof. Shmuel Banai, MD, Medical Director

One of Israel’s leading Cardiologists and a productive researcher. Professor Shmuel Banai was Medical Director of Neovasc Medical Ltd., one of the predecessor companies to Neovasc Inc., where he now fulfills the role of Medical Director.

Prof. Banai is the Director of the Division of Cardiology and the Head of Interventional Cardiology at the Tel Aviv Medical Center, Tel Aviv, Israel.

He is a full academic Professor of Cardiology at the Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine. Head, of the Nicholas and Elizabeth Slezak Super Center for Cardiac Research and Biomedical Engineering, and the Walton Chair of Interventional Cardiology at the Tel Aviv University.

His main research interests are vessel wall biology and physiology, myocardial  microcirculation, atherosclerosis, vulnerable plaque, pharmacological treatment of restenosis, anti-thrombotic therapy, and device-based therapy for refractory angina.

Professor Banai is the author of more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters and has participated in many clinical and pre-clinical research studies in the field of cardiology, interventional cardiology, and pharmacotherapy.