MassBio® Welcomes Two Members to its Board of Directors

May 20, 2021

Coughlin and Preminger Bring Diversity of Perspectives & World-Class Experience to Board

May 20, 2021 (CAMBRIDGE, MA) – The Massachusetts Biotechnology Council (MassBio®) today announced the appointment of two life sciences executives to the organization’s Board of Directors. These members will direct and support MassBio’s mission to advance Massachusetts’ leadership in the life sciences to grow the industry, add value to the healthcare system, and improve patient lives.

“The last year has been defined by a pandemic that has wreaked havoc on the global economy and impacted patient lives around the world. In the face of these hardships, the life sciences industry has emerged as the leader in solving the world’s greatest unmet medical needs,” said Kendalle Burlin O’Connell, President & COO, MassBio. “I am thrilled to have Michal’s breadth of experience and knowledge on our Board, and to welcome Bob back to our Board in his new role since he’s transitioned from MassBio’s CEO. Along with our full Board, they will help us address the headwinds ahead and guide us as we seek to foster the industry’s continued growth and success.”

The two industry leaders joining the Board of Directors this year, include:

  • Robert K. Coughlin, Managing Director, Life Sciences, JLL
  • Michal Preminger, PhD, MBA, Head, Johnson & Johnson Innovation LLC, East North America

“Massachusetts time and time again proves itself to be the best place in the world for the life sciences, but as we look to the future it is incumbent upon us to ensure we have the brightest minds working collaboratively to sustain the legacy of our cluster,” said Chuck Wilson, Chair, MassBio Board of Directors. “It is an honor to welcome Michal Preminger and welcome Bob Coughlin back to our Board, each of whom brings a wealth of experience that will help us in our initiatives to improve equity, diversity, and inclusion, support the growth of the industry outside of the Cambridge/Boston core, and address the challenges that threaten the industry’s sustained growth.”  

For a full list of the members of MassBio’s Board of Directors, please visit:

About the New Board Members

Robert K. Coughlin, Managing Director, Life Sciences, JLL

Mr. Coughlin is a Managing Director at JLL and is the New England’s Life Science Practice Group lead. He specializes in the representation of lab, GMP manufacturing and technology space. Robert delivers create solutions that align real estate strategies with scientific business objectives.

Robert most recently operated as the CEO of the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council, where his mission was to advance Massachusetts’s leadership in the life sciences to grow the industry.

Robert has spent his career in both the public and private sectors. Before joining MassBio, he served as the Undersecretary of Economic Development within Governor Deval Patrick’s administration, where he prioritized both healthcare and economic development issues and was a strong advocate for the life sciences industry in Massachusetts. Prior to that, he was elected as State Representative to the 11th Norfolk district for three terms.

Robert has also held senior executive positions in the environmental services, capital management and venture capital industries.

Robert is a graduate of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy where he majored in Marine Engineering and served as an officer in the United States Naval Reserve.  In 2011, the American Diabetes Association honored Bob with their Father of the Year Award. In 2012, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation honored Bob with the CF Foundation Volunteer Leadership Award and in 2013 he received the Boston Irish Business Award from the Boston Irish Business Association. In 2014, he was awarded for his leadership in Biotechnology by the Massachusetts Society for Medical Research. He received the NTSAD advocate of the year in 2015 and was named to the Boston Business Journal’s Power 50, Top 50 Most Influential Bostonians. In 2016, he was honored with the Boston Biotech CEO Lifetime Achievement Award. His latest honors include the first-ever awarded Governor Paul Cellucci Fatherhood Award from the Children’s Trust and the Breath of Life Award from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (2017).

Michal Preminger, PhD, MBA, Head, Johnson & Johnson Innovation LLC, East North America

Michal is Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation LLC, East North America. Located at the Innovation Center in Cambridge, she leads the Johnson & Johnson Innovation team to build, advance, and manage the External R&D portfolio of co-investments spanning across pharmaceutical, consumer health and medical devices.

Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Michal served as the Executive Director of Harvard University’s Office of Technology Development (OTD) Harvard Medical School site, where she was responsible for development and commercialization of technologies emerging from research at HMS laboratories and for the strategy and execution of all industry collaborations. She negotiated agreements with major biopharma, life sciences, food and cosmetics companies to advance the translation of discoveries into products and create a revenue-generating product pipeline and worked with scientific founders and investors to create new startup companies. 

Before joining Harvard University’s OTD in 2005, Michal held a number of senior business and technology development leadership positions in the biotech and tech industries, and co-founded a biotechnology startup.

Michal serves on the Scientific Advisory Boards FutuRx Accelerator, and prior to joining Johnson & Johnson Innovation was a member of the SAB and a Member of the Board of Directors of a number of not-for-profit entities and companies, including Prize4Life, Compugen Ltd. and Alma Lasers. She holds a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences from the Weizmann Institute of Science, an MBA from INSEAD, Fontainebleau, France, and a BA in Medicine from Hadassah Medical School, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.

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