Management Team

 

Susan Yoss
Co-Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer

Susan is an accomplished senior level executive with extensive experience in investing, financing, planning and business development for public and private companies, family offices and hedge funds.  She held a number of senior finance, treasury and business development positions at Joseph E. Seagram, a global alcoholic beverage and media company.  After more than a decade at Seagram, Susan became the Chief Financial Officer for the Heyman Family Office, a multi-billion dollar family controlled organization, where she provided strategic and financial leadership across diversified business holdings, including chemical, building material and real estate operating companies, as well as for other actively managed investment activities. She also held senior executive positions in operating divisions owned by the Heyman Family, including GAF Corporation, Building Materials Corporation of America and International Specialty Products. Most recently, Susan served as Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer for Octavian Advisors, a $1 billion hedge fund. She received her bachelor's degree from the Wharton School and an MBA from Columbia Business School.  She has served on numerous boards, including Greyston Bakery, a nationally recognized pioneer in Social Enterprise, and the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, and was a Trustee for the Citizens Budget Commission.

 

Eric Sirota
Co-Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer

Eric is a proven business leader with over thirty years of pharmaceutical executive experience in clinical product development, commercialization and product branding, business development, medical affairs, government relations and contracting.  Eric began his career at Pfizer where he held executive roles in global and US markets for more than a twenty year period.  While at Pfizer, Eric’s leadership responsibilities spanned thirteen major therapeutic categories encompassing over thirty brands from specialty to blockbuster products.  He also led eight major Pfizer business alliances with both large pharmaceutical and small, emerging biotech companies as well as the multi-billion post-acquisition integration of Pharmacia into the Pfizer US organization.  After Pfizer, Eric was appointed President of the newly created Commercial Services Division at inVentiv Health where he led a 3,500 person organization providing a broad range of service offerings to the pharmaceutical industry.  After inVentiv Health, Eric served as COO for Optimer Pharmaceuticals where he was responsible for directing corporate strategy, managing business operations and supporting the successful sale of the Company to Cubist Pharmaceuticals.  He received his bachelor's degree in pharmacy from Rutgers College of Pharmacy and an MBA from the Wharton School. Eric is also intimately involved with Special Olympics and Challenger League Baseball as a father of a special needs son.

 

Neil Leibowitz, MD
Chief Medical Officer
 

Neil is a leading healthcare executive with degrees in economics, law and medicine. He is regularly asked to share his expertise on mental health and substance abuse issues at medical conferences and academic institutions. Neil is currently a medical director United Healthcare focused on behavioral health. Previously he was a partner of CMA-NY a healthcare organization retained by the New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene to provide medical, mental health nursing and pharmacy services to more than 80,000 patients in the New York City correctional system. His portfolio included a broad range of financial and administrative responsibilities such as budgeting, recruiting and staffing. Neil helped manage a team of more than forty pharmacists and sixty pharmacy technicians. He previously served as an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and as the mental health inpatient director at Montefiore Hospital. He received his bachelor’s degree in economics from Johns Hopkins University, a medical degree from New York Medical College and a law degree from New York University School of Law. He completed his internship and residency in psychiatry at Long Island Jewish Hospital and is board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

 

Judith E. Tytel
General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer

Judi is an attorney with deep knowledge of the pharmaceutical business. Following tenures at Carter, Ledyard & Milburn, and as General Counsel to Long Island University, Judi joined Pfizer as a policy advisor to the Chairman.  She has almost twenty-five years of experience at Pfizer, culminating in the leadership of all attorneys supporting the U.S. commercial business. She helped shape the launches of Lipitor, Viagra, Zithromax, and Norvasc, among many others. Judi was the lead attorney on the integration of Pharmacia in 2003. She also led the commercial side of three Department of Justice investigations.  She was a member of the senior leadership teams for both U.S. Sales and U.S. Medical.  Her participation in strategic and tactical development in varied aspects of the pharmaceutical business makes her unique among attorneys. After Pfizer, Judi joined Covington & Burling as counsel in the food and drug group.  She has held both appointive and elective office, serving as a member of the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Board of Trustees of the Village of Muttontown. She is a member of the Council of Overseers for the College of Pharmacy of Long Island University. She also served on the Board of Planned Parenthood of Nassau County and is a member of the National Council for Arts and Sciences of Washington University in and its New York Regional Council. Judi received her bachelor’s degree from Washington University in St Louis and a JD from New York University School of Law.

 

Dave Pompei, PharmD
Chief Scientific Officer
 

Dave is a pharmacist with specialized expertise in clinical research, product development and business administration.  He began his career as an inpatient pharmacist at Rush University Medical Center and gained operational experience as the pharmacist-in-charge at the Evanston Hospital outpatient pharmacy, a University of Chicago affiliate. Subsequently, Dave became a medical director at Cline, Davis & Mann, a healthcare advertising agency and began his consultancy.  Recent projects included work on a line of medicinal bitters for Apotheke, a pharmacy-inspired speakeasy, and the Take Less! Campaign with Help Remedies. He has advocated  for the inclusion of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis in the Connecticut medical cannabis formulary before the Connecticut Board of Physicians. He is an active member of the New York Academy of Medicine and volunteers with City Meals-on-Wheels. Dave received his doctorate in pharmacy from UW-Madison, with concentrations in clinical research and business administration, and his Masters in Finance from Baruch's Zicklin School of Business.

 

Michele Pfannenstiel, DVM
Quality Assurance Officer & Director of Lab Analytics
 

Michele is a food safety expert.  She has over eight years of experience managing and consulting on safety and quality assurance programs for food producers and processors.  She is an expert in Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points, the program used by the FDA and USDA to protect the public health.  She is the founder and CEO of Dirigo Food Safety LLC, a company that creates and implements safety programs that comply with government standards. She served in the Peace Corps in Irbid, Jordan.  Upon receiving her DVM, Michele commissioned into the U.S. Army Veterinary Corps.  As a Captain in the U.S. Army, she managed food inspection in an area covering upstate New York to Central New Jersey. Michele received her bachelor’s degree in economics and geology from Wellesley College.  She earned her DMV at the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine.

 

John Sullivan
Chief Technology Officer

John joins the Fiorello Pharmaceutical team with more than thirty-five years as an Information Technology and Business Management executive. Effective Information Technology management is a mission-critical function at Fiorello Pharmaceuticals. This is due to the rigorous government compliance reporting requirements in the cannabis industry. Prior to joining Fiorello, John was in management positions at AT&T in New York and New Jersey. John and his organization researched, developed, launched and managed a number of highly technical security products and services. These products and services were sold around the world to protect the electronic information of large global enterprises, as well as U.S. federal and state government customers.  The product portfolio that John managed for AT&T generated in excess of $200 million in annual revenue. Most recently, John managed an Internet security platform sold through AT&T's product management team. John received his bachelor’s degree from Manhattan College and an M.B.A. from Southern Illinois University

 

Josh Malman
Master Grower

Josh oversees all grow operations of The Clinic Colorado, one of the largest marijuana cultivators in the United States. Previously, Josh worked for Nurserymen's Exchange/Bloom Rite, the largest grower of indoor flowers, fresh cut herbs and potted edibles in the country. Josh manages all grow operations at The Clinic, including product quality and quantity management for three grow locations. He is actively involved with medical cannabis research and with the Marijuana Advisory Group. He also works with the Colorado Department of Agriculture on best practices for the industry. He has in-depth knowledge of breeding and cultivating different cannabis strains. He will bring his knowledge of 131 different cannabis strains to Fiorello Pharmaceuticals. Josh received his bachelor’s degree in Horticulture at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

 

Robert Verstandig
Head Grower
 

Bob was the director of all cultivation and facility operations for Verstandig Florist in Selkirk, NY managing greenhouse operations that grew horticultural plants for sale to wholesale and retail customer, for display, exhibition, and research.  The Verstandig family business, in its second generation of operation, expanded significantly under Bob’s thirty year management. His expertise includes staff training and management, plant husbandry, advanced propagation, greenhouse grow area operation and design.  He is skilled in identification of potential growing problems, such as disease, insects and weed pests and also in assessing watering and nutritional requirements for each plant species.  Bob is a NYSDEC Licensed Commercial Pesticide Applicator. He brings significant expertise to Fiorello Pharmaceutical in large-scale commercial indoor growing, including temperature control, light requirements, mediums, nutrients, air flow equipment, maintenance and problem solving. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Soil and Plant Science at the University of Vermont, with a concentration in Ornamental Horticulture.

 

Elizabeth Keyser
Director of Cultivation/GAP Specialist
 

Liz is an expert in Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), cultivation management, and food safety management.  She was the Grower and Greenhouse Manager for Finger Lakes Fresh/Challenge Industries, where she oversaw daily harvest transplanting and spacing of multiple crops. She held a similar position at Challenge Industries, overseeing harvests and coordinating the growing staff. Her responsibilities included crop monitoring, nutrient solutions, and periodic crop analysis. Liz was Head Grower at Etain, LLC in New York, a licensed New York Registered Organization, where she was instrumental in their start-up. Subsequently, she became the Head Flower Grower at Maine Organic Therapy. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

 

Ryan Cook
Product Director
 

Ryan is the Director of Operations for The Clinic Colorado, where he has been responsible for day-to-day operations, including oversight of retail stores, production facilities, and construction and development activities. He has been extensively involved with developing Colorado's marijuana laws and regulations as well as The Clinic's in-house regulatory compliance procedures.  At their request, he has often lent his expertise to state and local governments in their development of marijuana related laws and regulations. He has testified numerous times before state and local government bodies. Ryan is a member of the State of Colorado's work group for Concentrate Production Rules and Regulations. Earlier in his career, Ryan served as the General Manager of C&D Builders, Inc., a design, development and construction management services firm. Ryan received his bachelor’s degree in Architecture with an emphasis on environmental design from the University of Colorado-Boulder.

 

Lawrence M. Stanton
Chief Security Officer

Larry is a highly regarded technical expert with over thirty years’ experience designing and implementing industrial risk management and security programs for chemical, pharmaceutical and government organizations. He has designed, implemented and managed programs for the Department of Homeland Security, the Environmental Protection Agency, BASF Corporation and Knoll Pharmaceuticals. Larry has served as the Director of the Office Emergency Management (OEM) for the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). During his tenure with EPA, the OEM implemented major revisions to both Risk Management Plan regulation and Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasure regulation.  Larry managed the agency level response to Super Storm Sandy and the West Fertilizer explosion, and oversaw an average of three hundred chemical, biological and radiological emergency response actions per year. Prior to joining EPA, Larry held a series of progressively more responsible positions at the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Infrastructure Protection, where he designed, developed and implemented the Department's Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standard. Larry earned his bachelor’s degree at St. Peter's College.  He holds a Certificate in National Preparedness Leadership from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government and the School of Public Health, a certificate in Public Administration of Homeland Security at The Pennsylvania State University and a Certificate in Senior Corporate Security Management at Georgetown University.