Management Team

Dr John Friend 

Chief Executive Officer

Dr John Friend is a highly experienced oncology and haematology drug developer, driven by a passion for improving the lives of cancer patients. In a career spanning more than 25 years, Dr Friend has worked across a wide range of therapeutic areas in roles from early clinical research through to medical affairs. He was formerly the Senior Vice President of Medical and Scientific Affairs for the US business unit of Helsinn Therapeutics and most recently the Chief Medical Officer at Cellectar Biosciences, a clinical-stage, oncology-focused biotech company in the US.

Dr Friend gained his medical degree at Rutgers University (UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson) and he also holds a BA in chemistry from Southern Methodist University.

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Gabrielle Heaton 

VP Finance & Administration and PFO

Ms Gabrielle Heaton has over thirty years of commercial experience in ASX listed and multinational entities, including twenty years in the healthcare and biotech industries.

Ms Heaton was appointed VP Finance & Administration and Principal Finance Officer (PFO) in January 2024, after serving as Director of Finance and Administration since 2017.

Prior to joining Kazia, Ms Heaton held several senior Finance positions including CFO for Obex Medical Australia and Finance Manager for Zimmer Biomet. Ms Heaton has also been a Quality Auditor and responsible for Human Resources and IT.

Ms Heaton holds a Bachelor of Business from the University of Technology and is a member of CPA Australia.

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Anna Sandham 

Company Secretary

Ms Anna Sandham has more than 25 years’ experience as a company secretary and governance professional, working with ASX listed and privately owned companies.

Anna is employed by Company Matters Pty Ltd (part of the Link Group). Prior to joining Company Matters in 2012, Anna was a Company Secretary at AMP Financial Services and prior to that was Company Secretary at Westpac Banking Corporation where she also led the secretariat function for the BT Financial Group. Anna has also held company secretarial roles within the private and public sectors, including NRMA Limited.

Anna holds a Bachelor of Economics (University of Sydney) and a Graduate Diploma of Applied Corporate Governance (Governance Institute of Australia). She is a Chartered Governance Professional, a Fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia and a member of its Legislative Review Committee.

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