Dendreon Corporation announced that its board of directors has appointed W. Thomas Amick as president and chief executive officer, effective immediately. Mr. Amick has also been appointed to the company’s board of directors. Mr. Amick succeeds John H. Johnson, who previously announced his plans to step down as president and chief executive officer for personal reasons. Mr. Johnson will work with Mr. Amick through August 15, 2014 to ensure a smooth transition.
Mr. Amick brings to Dendreon significant experience within the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry. Most recently from 2010 to 2012, he served as chairman and chief executive officer of Discovery Labs, a specialty biotechnology company. Under his leadership, Discovery Labs was granted approval for Surfaxin, the first synthetic lung surfactant approved for use in premature infants. Prior to that, Mr. Amick enjoyed a highly successful 30-year career with Johnson & Johnson where, as vice president of the Ortho Biotech Oncology Franchise, he launched Procrit ® (epoetin alfa) and built J&J’s oncology franchise into a multi-billion dollar operation, making Procrit the most successful product in J&J history at the time. Mr. Amick also previously held positions as president of Ortho Biotech Europe, president of Janssen-Ortho Canada, and vice president of J&J Development Corporation (the venture capital division of J&J).
“Tom’s appointment is the result of a thorough search process,” said Douglas G. Watson, chairman of the board. “We believe that Tom’s leadership experience and oncology product expertise make him an excellent fit for Dendreon.”
“I have a great passion and respect for Dendreon’s mission of transforming the lives of patients through the discovery, development and commercialization of innovative cancer treatments,” said Mr. Amick. “I believe that PROVENGE is a unique immunotherapy treatment and look forward to working with the Dendreon team.”