Vermillion, Inc. has announced that its board of directors has unanimously nominated Paul R. Sohmer, M.D. for election as a director at the upcoming annual meeting of stockholders.
Dr. Sohmer was recommended to serve on the board as an independent investor representative by a Vermillion stockholder with long-term holdings of approximately 5% of the company's outstanding common stock.
After consideration of Dr. Sohmer's background and qualifications, the board of directors determined he is an exceptionally qualified candidate.
"Paul's nomination is a perfect fit to our in vitro diagnostic business with his 27 years of experience in public and private growth companies focused on laboratory services, medical devices, and biotechnology," said James Burns, Vermillion's chairman.
Dr. Sohmer would bring a broad range of clinical diagnostics leadership experience to the board, having previously provided direction and oversight to numerous public and privately held companies engaged in the development, manufacture, marketing and sale of in vitro diagnostic reagents and instruments, as well as the delivery of hospital-based and esoteric reference laboratory services.
He also possesses a wealth of experience developing companies and increasing shareholder value via leveraging the capital markets, developing strategic alternatives, and leading merger and acquisition transactions.
Dr. Sohmer is currently president and CEO of Viracor-IBT Laboratories, Inc., a diagnostic and research laboratory specializing in allergy, immunology and infectious disease testing.
Prior to Viracor-IBT, he served as CEO of Orthocon, Inc., a developer, manufacturer and marketer of implantable medical products.
He also previously served as interim CEO of Cylex, Inc. and CEO of Pathway Diagnostics Ltd., during which time he also served on the board of RadPharm, Inc. and as chairman of Molecular Biometrics, Inc.
Earlier in his career he served as president and CEO of NASDAQ-listed Neuromedical Systems, Inc., until its acquisition by TriPath Imaging, Inc. a NASDAQ-listed cancer diagnostics company that developed and commercialized molecular diagnostic products for cervical, breast, ovarian and prostate cancers. He served TriPath as its chairman, president and CEO until it was purchased by Becton, Dickinson and Company, a leading global medical technology company.
Prior to Neuromedical Systems, he served as president and CEO of Genetrix, Inc., a genetic testing lab, until the company was acquired by Genzyme Corporation.
Before Genetrix, Dr. Sohmer was president and CEO of Pathology Institute, Inc., where he led the first commercial introduction of polymerase chain reaction for diagnosis of HIV and founded the Chiron Reference Laboratory.
Dr. Sohmer received his B.A. from Northwestern University and M.D. from the Chicago Medical School. He was named the Ernst and Young Carolinas Life Sciences Entrepreneur of the Year in 2005.
If elected, Dr. Sohmer would succeed current board member John F. Hamilton who has not been nominated for re-election at this meeting. "We thank John for his six years of exceptional service to the board," said Burns, "and we wish him continued success in his other endeavors."
Dr. Sohmer's election to the board, along with Vermillion's other nominee, would maintain the total number of directors on the board at seven, with six serving independently.