Leadership Team

Rick Pauls was appointed our President and Chief Executive Officer in July 2009.  Mr. Pauls has served as a member of our board of directors since April 2005 and the Chairman of the Board from April 2008 to July 2014.  

Prior to joining DiaMedica, Mr. Pauls was the Co-Founder and Managing Director of CentreStone Ventures Inc., an early stage life sciences venture capital fund, from February 2002 until January 2010.  Mr. Pauls was an analyst for Centara Corporation, another early stage venture capital fund, from January 2000 until January 2002.  From June 1997 until November 1999, Mr. Pauls worked for General Motors Acceptation Corporation specializing in asset-backed securitization and structured finance.  Mr. Pauls previously served as an independent member of the board of directors of LED Medical Diagnostics, Inc.  Mr. Pauls received his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Manitoba and his M.B.A. in Finance from the University of North Dakota.

Todd Verdoorn, Ph.D. was appointed our Chief Scientific Officer in May 2016.  From January 2016 to April 2016, Dr. Verdoorn served as our Vice President, Neuroscience. 

Prior to joining DiaMedica, Dr. Verdoorn served as Chief Scientist at Intuitive Quantitation, LLC from May 2013 to December 2016.  From September 2011 to May 2013, Dr. Verdoorn served as Vice President, Neurobiology at NeuroTherapeutics Pharma, Inc.  From January 2008 to August 2011, Dr. Verdoorn served as Chief Scientist for Orasi Medical, Inc.  From June 2007 to January 2008, Dr. Verdoorn served as Chief Scientific Officer for Smart Bioscience SAS.  Prior to joining Smart Bioscience, Dr. Verdoorn served as Chief Scientific Officer at Algos Preclinical Services, Inc. from January 2003 to June 2007.  Dr. Verdoorn has more than 26 years of experience working with both public and private companies to develop new treatments for neurological diseases, including five years working with Bristol-Myers Squibb’s stroke group.  Dr. Verdoorn has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Chemistry from Central College and he earned his Ph.D. in Neurobiology from the University of North Carolina, conducting his post-doctoral research at the Max Planck Institute with Nobel Laureate Dr. Bert Sakmann and served as Associate Professor of Pharmacology at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

Harry Alcorn Jr., Pharm.D. was appointed our Chief Medical Officer and Vice President of Clinical Affairs in August 2018. 

Prior to joining DiaMedica, Dr. Alcorn served as Chief Scientific Officer of Total Renal Research, Inc., doing business as DaVita Clinical Research (“DCR”), a clinical research facility, from November 1997 to July 2018. While at DCR, Dr. Alcorn was responsible for clinical research operations, including management of the early clinical research unit. Dr. Alcorn also designed and created the U.S. Renal Network, the first network of Phase I renal research sites in the U.S. Dr. Alcorn developed DCR's site management organization for clinical trials. Dr. Alcorn also served as an Executive Director, a Pharmacist and an Investigator at DCR. From March 1996 to November 1997, Dr. Alcorn served as Executive Director of Clinical Programs for GalaGen, Inc., a Pharmaceutical company.  From March 1992 to March 1996, Dr. Alcorn served as Vice President, Marketing/Sales and Clinical Programs of In Home Health, Inc., a national home health provider. Dr. Alcorn served on the board of directors of Medtox Scientific Inc.

Dr. Alcorn is also a Clinical Assistant Professor at Creighton University School of Pharmacy, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Pharmacy, University of Minnesota, College of Pharmacy and University of Nebraska Medical Center, College of Pharmacy.  Dr. Alcorn is also on the adjunct clinical faculty at the University of Colorado. Dr. Alcorn graduated from Creighton University with his Bachelor of Science degree in Pharmacy and went on to receive his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Nebraska Medical Center. 

Scott Kellen was appointed our Chief Financial Officer and Secretary in April 2018.

Prior to joining DiaMedica, Mr. Kellen served as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Sun BioPharma, Inc., a publicly-traded clinical stage drug development company, from October 2015 until April 2018.  From February 2010 to September 2015, Mr. Kellen served as Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of Kips Bay Medical, Inc., a publicly-traded medical device company, and became Chief Operating Officer of Kips Bay in March 2012.  From November 2007 to May 2009, Mr. Kellen served as Finance Director of Transoma Medical, Inc.  From 2005 to October 2007, Mr. Kellen served as Corporate Controller of ev3 Inc.  From March 2003 to April 2005, Mr. Kellen served as Senior Manager, Audit and Advisory Services of Deloitte & Touche, LLP.  Altogether, Mr. Kellen has spent more than 25 years in the life sciences industry, focusing on publicly traded early stage and growth companies.  Mr. Kellen has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of South Dakota and is a Certified Public Accountant (inactive).

Mr. Papi has extensive experience as an entrepreneurial senior executive with 38 years of demonstrated success in life sciences, investment banking, general management, product and business development, and sales and marketing leadership. Mr. Papi spent 28 years as an executive for Mylan Laboratories, providing the basis of his life science experience. His work at Mylan, as well as experience with young life science companies, provides him a unique perspective in understanding the rigors of getting through the FDA and balancing the cash flow requirements for funding the clinical process. Mr. Papi previously held a Series 7, Series 63 license and specialized in institutional equity raises, corporate development, and mergers and acquisitions. He has been a moderator at life science conferences for fund raising and has a superior track record helping young companies with strategy, financing, outreach, business expansion, networking, and communication skills.