Photo of Judy Blumstock
Executive Director, Corporate Development
Work Phone: 647-260-7863

Biographical Info

Judith provides financial strategy and in-depth portfolio reporting for TIAP and its technologies and companies under management. She also takes an active role in fundraising and investor relations, and leads a variety of special projects.

Prior to joining TIAP (previously MaRS Innovation), Judith was a principal with Genesys Capital Partners, one of the largest Canadian-based venture-capital firms focused on the life sciences industry. She is also a past director of Insception, Millenium Biologix Corp., Plexagen Diagnostics, and Zelos Therapeutics Inc. Previously, Judith was a partner with Royal Bank Capital Partners Life Sciences Fund and, prior to that, director of Bio/pharmaceutical Research at Drug Royalty Corporation.

Judith received her M.B.A. in finance from Columbia Business School and her B.Sc. in Biology from the University of Toronto.

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Photo of Phil Goldbach
Manager, Technology and Venture Development; Manager, Intellectual Property
Work Phone: 647-260-7830

Biographical Info

Phil manages intellectual property (IP) rights across all technologies within TIAP’s (previously MaRS Innovation) portfolio. He advises on various forms of IP protection, assessing patentability and managing patent application filings and prosecution decisions. Phil also manages projects in TIAP’s Life Sciences portfolio. He performs technical and market due diligence on new technologies to support and expand TIAP’s portfolio. In addition, he develops business, technical, and strategic plans and engages with industry partners in order to support new start-up ventures.

Prior to joining TIAP, Phil trained with an intellectual property boutique law firm in downtown Toronto as a member of the firm’s life sciences patent practice group, where he was exposed to a wide array of technologies including biologics, small molecules, medical devices, and information technologies. He has also acted as director of intellectual property for a biotechnology start-up company in Mississauga that specializes in developing antibody-based products for use in animal health and food safety.

Phil holds a PhD in Molecular Genetics from the University of Toronto and a JD from Osgoode Hall Law School.

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Photo of Rafi Hofstein
President & CEO
Work Phone: 647-260-7868

Biographical Info

Dr. Raphael Hofstein joined TIAP (then MaRS Innovation) as President & CEO in 2009, the year of the organization’s inception. Under Dr. Hofstein’s leadership, TIAP has incorporated over 50 startup companies; attracted over $300M in seed funding; and has become a key leader in bringing global industry focus on Toronto as a place of important research and commercialization activities.

Dr. Hofstein is a co-founder and director of BiolineRx in Israel (listed on NASDAQ), and of Triphase Accelerator Corporation, Canada’s largest oncology oriented accelerator. Dr. Hofstein is a member of the Executive Committee of Life Science Ontario, and is the Chair of the Board of Clinical Trials Ontario.

Dr. Hofstein received his PhD in Life Sciences and Chemistry from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel and completed post-doctoral training and research at the Harvard Medical School in Boston.


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Photo of Hassan Jaferi
Manager, UTEST
Work Phone: 647-531-4681

Biographical Info

As Manager of UTEST, Hassan works with early-stage startup companies from the University of Toronto and its affiliated hospitals. He helps guide UTEST portfolio companies in the areas of business development, marketing, intellectual property, fundraising and strategy.

Previously, Hassan was a commercialization manager at MaRS Innovation, now Toronto Innovation Acceleration Partners, where he divided his time between projects located in Innovation York and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre’s Technology Transfer office, located in the Sunnybrook Research Institute. He conducted due diligence on invention disclosures, aided in patent application preparation and prosecution, executed business development for early-stage technologies and pursued public and private funding to advance early-stage research projects.

Before joining TIAP, Hassan was a commercial development analyst with PARTEQ Innovations, the technology transfer office of Queen’s University, where he managed the commercialization of early-stage technologies and helped managed a start-up company. He has also worked as a patent examiner with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office.

Hassan holds a M.Sc. in space management from the International Space University in Strasbourg, France, and a B.Sc. in computer engineering from the University of Ottawa.

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Photo of Teja Mullapudi
Analyst, Technology & Venture Development
Work Phone: 647-260-8861

Biographical Info

Teja Mullapudi performs market opportunity assessment and scientific due diligence to determine the commercialization potential of projects entering TIAP’s pipeline. He also scouts for promising science and innovation from TIAP’s academic member institutions.

Prior to joining TIAP, Teja conducted market opportunity assessment for a software-as-a-service firm that aimed to enter the healthcare market. During his doctoral training in Prof. Didier Stainier’s lab at the Max Planck for Heart & Lung Research, Teja identified potentially first-in-class anti-diabetic agents to regulate glucose levels through insulin-independent mechanisms. His other past experiences include research on adipose cell biology at Prof. Alexander Pfeifer’s lab at the University of Bonn, and on human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras and the National AIDS Research Institute, India.

Teja holds a Ph.D. from Goethe University, Frankfurt (Dec 2019) in Germany and an M.Tech + B.Tech in Biotechnology from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras in India.

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Photo of Parimal Nathwani
Vice President
Work Phone: 647-260-7873

Biographical Info

Parimal Nathwani has over 15 years of experience in various aspects of the biotechnology industry including corporate finance, business development, transactions, intellectual property management, technology development and operations. He has been actively involved in forming and managing start-ups, preparing and executing on business plans, raising early-stage capital and in- and out-licensing activities.

Before joining MaRS Innovation, now Toronto Innovation Acceleration Partners (TIAP), Parimal was a healthcare analyst with a boutique investment bank, where he conducted equity research on publicly-traded biotechnology companies in Canada and the U.S. He has also led commercialization activities out of BC Women’s and Children’s Hospital as part of his role at the University of British Columbia’s Industry Liaison Office, and was a research scientist at a start-up biotechnology company involved in drug discovery targeting ABC Transporters.

Parimal received his MBA from Simon Fraser University and his M.Sc. from the University of British Columbia.  He currently sits on the boards of TRIUMF Innovations, Zucara Therapeutics, and Vasomune Therapeutics, and is an observer on the board of Encycle Therapeutics.

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Photo of Waqqas Shams
Project Analyst, Life Sciences
Work Phone: 647-260-8865

Biographical Info

Waqqas Shams supports the neuroscience portfolio at TIAP (previously MaRS Innovation) through evaluation of early-stage research by conducting scientific, technical and intellectual property due diligence, assessing market potential and identifying potential industry partners to support new start-up ventures.

Prior to joining TIAP, Waqqas completed his PhD at Concordia University investigating the effects of steroid hormones in conjunction with antipsychotics for a more effective treatment for schizophrenia, in an animal model of the disease. In addition to his doctoral work, Waqqas was a statistics instructor at Concordia University, teaching psychology students the basic fundamentals of statistics and its applications in research.

Waqqas received his B.Sc., Honours in psychology from University of Toronto, Mississauga, and his PhD in Neuroscience from Concordia University.

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Photo of Susanne Staer
Manager, Communications and Corporate Affairs
Work Phone: 647-260-7869

Biographical Info

Susanne is the Corporate Secretary for Toronto Innovation Acceleration Partners (TIAP) (previously MaRS Innovation) and as such is in charge of the integrity of the organization’s governance framework, including compliance with various governing and funding requirements; efficient administration of the Board of Directors and its various governing and advisory committees; and management of the process related to the annual general meetings and accurate record keeping of Board decisions and organizational history.

In addition, Susanne delivers administrative expertise to the executive office, and oversees marketing, external communications, social media and website development. She maintains office efficiency by establishing procedures and standards, and is the point-person for all aspects of the administration of TIAP.

Prior to joining TIAP, Susanne worked closely with to two senior partners in a nation-wide law firm, in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and securities, and general corporate matters. Susanne also trained new administrative staff and was instrumental in setting up various internal intranet functions as they pertained to training and staff administration.

Susanne has an international administrative background through her work in the diplomatic corps under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark, through which she was posted to the Royal Danish Embassies in Russia and Ghana.

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Photo of Jackie Terry
Executive Assistant to the Vice President
Work Phone: 647-260-7870

Biographical Info

In addition to her responsibilities as EA to the Vice President, Jackie provides administrative support to the boards of several of Toronto Innovation Acceleration Partner’s startup companies.  She also assists with the daily administration of the LAB150 funding initiative for new drug discovery, and is the liaison between TIAP and its partner, Evotec AG, as well as the main contact for the Technology Transfer Offices and researchers at TIAP’s Member institutions who wish to apply to the LAB150 program.

Prior to joining TIAP, Jackie collaborated on and managed projects in the polymer characterization department of an organization that specialized in contract and service-based research, development and testing. Her specialties were innovative techniques for preparing and analyzing materials using various disciplines of microscopy, particularly scanning electron microscopy, mainly in the fields of materials characterization and failure analysis.

Jackie received her B. Sc. in Chemistry from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

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