Fighting Patient Infection

Rapid, Sensitive, and Affordable Testing


Board of Directors

William Moffitt

William Moffitt, Chairman, Following executive positions at Baxter Healthcare Corporation and American Hospital Supply, William “Bill” Moffitt led the point-of-care company I-Stat Corporation from its early research phase through commercialization and IPO to a premium acquisition by Abbott Labs in 2003. He subsequently took the clinical microbiology company Nanosphere through the development stage and IPO to sales, retiring in 2013. Bill serves on five boards of directors, three in the UK. Bill joined the First Light board in August 2017.

Thierry Bernard
Thierry Bernard, Director, is the Senior Vice President at QIAGEN, in the Molecular Diagnostics Business Area, a growing presence in diagnostic solutions for healthcare. Mr. Bernard joined the QIAGEN team in February 2015 from bioMérieux, where he served in roles of increasing responsibility for 15 years, most recently as Corporate Vice President, Global Commercial Operations, Investor Relations and the Greater China Region. Prior to joining bioMérieux, he served in management roles in multiple international environments. Mr. Bernard is a member of the Boards of Directors of three privately held U.S. companies, AdvanDx, HepatoChem and more recently, Daktari Diagnostics, where he also served as CEO. He has earned degrees from Sciences Po (Paris), Harvard Business School, London School of Economics and the College of Europe and is a member of French Foreign Trade Advisors.
Sal Salamone
Dr. Sal Salamone, Director, is the founder of Saladax Biomedical which is a company dedicated to the development of Therapeutic Drug Management (TDM) assays in the field of oncology and companion diagnostics. Saladax has launched numerous TDM oncology drug assays and supported clinical studies on their effective use. Dr. Salamone has more than 30 years’ experience in the health care and medical device industries. Prior to founding Saladax he was Senior Vice President of R&D at Orasure Technologies where he developed rapid point of care tests in the infectious disease and drugs of abuse areas. Before Orasure he was Vice President of Research and Development at  Roche Diagnostics, where he was responsible for North American research and development efforts for the Laboratory Systems Division. Dr. Salamone’s efforts during his 17-year tenure at Roche resulted in the launch of seven major reagent product lines, comprised of more than 70 FDA approved products and more than 200 instrument applications. Dr. Salamone is well published in the field with more than 70 peer reviewed publications, numerous book chapters and is also the holder of 42 issued US patents. He serves on the boards of several companies, is a reviewer for several scientific journals, participates on NIH study sections for SBIR-STTR grants and often is an invited speaker at major conferences. Dr. Salamone received two bachelor’s degrees from Villanova University, a master’s and a PhD degree from Rutgers University and was a SERC Post-Doctoral Fellow at Oxford University.
Tripp Peake

Tripp Peake, Director,  co-founded Long River Ventures in 2000 and has served as a General Partner in all three Long River Ventures funds with a total of $70 million under management. Tripp invests primarily in B2B software and internet companies in a range of sectors including media, telecom, business services, and healthcare. He has been lead investor and/or board member at numerous companies including Diameter Health, Extreme Reach, Health Guru (acquired by Kitara Media), Machine Metrics, Optasite (acquired by SBA Communications), Profile Systems (acquired by Comergent), Protedyne (acquired by LabCorp), Sovereign Hill Software (acquired by Dataware), and Western Mass Radio Group (acquired by Pamal Broadcasting).

Immediately prior to Long River, Tripp was a partner at Kestrel Venture Management, where he focused on the management of the Mass Ventures Equity Fund, a $14 million early-stage fund established in western Massachusetts in 1997. Before joining Kestrel, Tripp was co-founder and CEO of two venture development consulting companies: Mass Ventures, based in Amherst, MA and associated with the University of Massachusetts; and Science Park Associates, based in New Haven, CT and associated with Yale University. Both of these companies provided university spin-offs and regional entrepreneurs with strategic and financing advice and helped raise over $50 million in private equity for 18 different early-stage ventures. Tripp holds a B.A. from Dartmouth College and an M.B.A from Yale University.

Don Straus
Don Straus is Director, CEO, CSO, and founder of First Light Biosciences. Don previously founded Rapid Micro Biosystems, a commercialization-stage venture-backed company, at which he served as a Director. He also founded Rapid Micro’s predecessor, Genomic Profiling Systems. Don served as VP of Research at these companies for 9 years. At both First Light and Rapid Micro he identified the target markets, invented the core scientific technology, built the founding teams, developed the initial product concepts, led IP development, and managed development of the initial product prototypes. His prior research experience includes projects in molecular and microbial detection technologies, genomics, molecular biology, enzymology, and developmental biology. Don was Assistant Professor of Biology at Brandeis University, did post-doctoral work at Massachusetts General Hospital, earned a doctorate in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Harvard University, and received a B.S. in Chemistry from University of California, Berkeley.
Norm Gitis
Norm Gitis, Board Observer, obtained his Ph.D. (1983) in Mechanical Engineering from the USSR Academy of Sciences in Moscow. He immigrated to the US in 1989 and was a visiting professor at MIT until IBM moved him to San Jose, where he worked in the computer industry. Norm was founder, President, and CEO of two highly-profitable test-instrumentation companies. Both have been acquired by leading corporations with high multiples. He was twice named the CEO of Top 20 Fastest Growing Private Companies in Northern California by the Business Journal. Norm is a life member of the engineering society of India and is a visiting professor of two universities in China. Norm has authored over 150 scientific papers, three books, and two dozen patents. He also chaired and organized numerous international scientific conferences. In parallel, Norm has been active in IP and product quality protection and has been a star expert witness in courts of Amsterdam, Berlin, Boston, London, Phoenix, and San Jose. Norm serves on the Board of Directors of Life Science Angels, where he also chairs a med-device committee, and two med-tech stealth-mode start-ups in the oncology and cardiology spaces.