Thought Leaders Network
  • Prof. Paul Yock

    Director, Stanford Biodesign

    Paul Yock is the Martha Meier Weiland Professor of Medicine and Mechanical Engineering (by courtesy) and Founding Co-Chair of Stanford’s Department of Bioengineering. 

    Dr. Yock is internationally known for his work in inventing, developing and testing new devices, including the Rapid Exchange ™ balloon angioplasty system, which is now the primary system in use worldwide. He also invented a Doppler-guided access system known as the Smart Needle™ and PD-Access™. The main focus of Dr. Yock’s research program has been in the field of intravascular ultrasound. He authored the fundamental patents for mechanical intravascular ultrasound imaging and helped conduct the initial clinical trials. In 1986 he founded Cardiovascular Imaging Systems, which was acquired by Boston Scientific in 1994. Dr. Yock has cofounded several other medical technology companies. 

    In his academic career, Dr. Yock has authored over 300 peer-reviewed publications, chapters and editorials, a textbook and over 45 US patents. Recent awards include the Transcatheter Therapeutics (TCT) Career Achievement Award, the American College of Cardiology Distinguished Scientist Award and an honorary doctorate from Amherst College. Dr. Yock is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. Current research interests of Dr. Yock’s group at Stanford focus on development and testing of catheter-based delivery systems for cardiac cell transplantation and new catheter and molecular imaging techniques for cardiology. Dr. Yock also founded and directs the Program in Biodesign, a unit of Stanford’s Bio-X initiative that focuses on invention and technology transfer related to biomedical engineering.

  • Dr. Frederic Moll

    CEO, Auris Robotic Surgery

    Founder, Intuitive Surgical Inc.

    Frederic H. Moll, M.D. joined Auris Surgical Robotics in August 2011 as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer.  Prior to Auris, Dr. Moll co-founded Hansen Medical and served as the company’s first CEO.  In 1995, Dr. Moll founded Intuitive Surgical, Inc., also serving as the company’s first CEO.  Prior to Intuitive Surgical, Dr. Moll co-founded Origin Medsystems, Inc. which later became an operating company within Guidant Corporation following its acquisition by Eli Lilly and Company.  Dr. Moll served as medical director of Guidant’s Surgical Device Division.  Before co-founding Origin Medsystems, Dr. Moll founded Endotherapeutics Corporation, a pioneering company in laparoscopic surgical technology.  Endotherapeutics was acquired by U.S. Surgical in 1992.

    Dr. Moll holds a bachelor of arts in economics from the University of California at Berkeley, a M.S. degree in management from Stanford University, and a medical degree from the University of Washington. Dr. Moll is a distinguished speaker and lecturer, and is the author of numerous scientific articles. He currently serves on the boards of several Silicon Valley healthcare companies.

  • A/Prof Louis Phee

    Head, Mechatronics & Design Division, School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering

    CEO, Endomaster

    Dr Louis Phee is an Associate Professor at Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore. He is currently the Head of the Mechatronics & Design Division, School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at NTU. He graduated from NTU with the B.Eng (Hons) and M.Eng degrees in 1996 and 1999 respectively. He obtained his PhD from Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Pisa, Italy in 2002 on a European Union scholarship. His research interests include Medical Robotics and Mechatronics in Medicine. Currently, Dr Phee is the Principal Investigator of a few interdisciplinary projects. He had served as the Program Manager of A*STAR’s inaugural MedTech Program. Currently, he is also the CEO of EndoMaster Pte Ltd, a company he co-founded to commercialize a surgical robotic system. Dr Phee was awarded the, Young Scientist Award, the Outstanding Young Persons of Singapore Award, the Nanyang Outstanding Young Alumni Award, Nanyang Alumni Award and the President’s Technology Award from 2006. He has published over 40 international journals and book chapters.

  • Prof. Christopher Cheng

    Senior Consultant, Department of Urology, Singapore General Hospital

    Chief Executive Officer of SengKang General Hospital

    Prof Christopher Cheng graduated from Singapore University in 1982 and obtained his FRCS(Surg) in 1986, and FAMS (Urology) in 1993. He was the first urologist from Singapore to be fellowship certified in Uro-oncology at the Mayo Clinic in 1992.

    Prof Cheng is currently Senior Consultant, Department of Urology, SGH and Pro-Tem, Chief Executive Officer of SengKang General Hospital.

    He was the Head of Urology from SGH 2001-2011. He was Chief Medical Informatics Officer of SGH from 2003-2008. He was Chairman, Electronic Medical Records, SingHealth from 1994-2008.

    Prof Cheng is Council Member and a Member of the Complaint Panel of Singapore
    Medical Council. Prof Cheng was awarded the SingHealth GCEO Excellence Award for ‘Outstanding Clinician’ in Year 2011.

    Prof Cheng is currently the Adjunct Professor to Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore and Clinical Associate Professor at the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore. He is also the Visiting Professor of Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China. He was Founding President of the Asia-Pacific Society of Uro-oncology and President of the Singapore Urological Association from Year 2004 to 2006. He is the Chairman, Long-Term Strategic Planning Committee of Société Internationale d'Urologie.

    Prof Cheng is active in sports, music and community work. He served on the committees of running clubs, sailing clubs and as volunteer doctor for community centres.

    He has more than 100 publications in local and international peer reviewed journals on uro-oncology and other subjects.

  • Mr. Lu Yoh-Chie

    Executive Chairman, Biosensiors International Ltd

    Mr. Lu, the founder of Biosensors International Group Ltd, was its chairman and CEO from its inception to 2008. He retained his leadership position as chairman of the Group since January 2008.

    Mr. Lu has more than 30 years’ experience in the medical industry. As chairman, Mr. Lu’s experience, leadership and track record has proven to be critical. While serving as CEO, he was responsible for Biosensors’ business strategies and directions, the implementation of corporate plans and policies, and the general management of business.

    Prior to founding the Company, Mr. Lu established Asia-based operations for the Medical Division of Gould Inc., which specialized in surgical and critical care catheters and instruments. He held various senior positions with Gould before advancing to the position of president of the Asia-Pacific division. In 1986, Mr. Lu participated in a management-led leveraged buyout of the division from Gould. He continued as president of the Asia-Pacific division through 1988 until it was sold to British Oxygen Corporation. He then served as president of Asia-Pacific with British Oxygen until 1990. In 1990, Mr. Lu also founded Sun Instruments-Japan, Sunscope International in California and Biosensors International in Singapore, all of which are now subsidiaries of Biosensors International Group, Ltd.

    Mr. Lu holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley and a Masters degree in Business Administration from the Thunderbird Graduate School of International Management in Arizona.

  • Dr. Thomas Forgarty

    M.D, Fogarty Institute for Innovation

    Not Available.

  • Dr. Manny Villafana

    Founder, St. Jude Medical Inc.

    With more than 50 years experience in the medical device industry, Manny’s  contributions to the cardiovascular field are numerous. They include the first lithium pacemaker, the first all-pyrolytic carbon heart valve, as well as, further important refinements to central-flow design of prosthetic valves, and with Kips Bay, the first commercially available support system for saphenous veins used in CABG surgery.


    Manny started his career with Medtronic, Inc., as its first international sales administrator. He is the Founder of Cardiac Pacemakers, Inc. (Guidant Corp) and served as its President and Chairman from 1972 to 1976. He is the Founder of St. Jude Medical, Inc. and served as its Chairman and President from 1976 to 1982. He is a Co-Founder of GV Medical, Inc., a company formed to develop, manufacture and market the LASTAC System. He served as the Chairman of the Board of CABG Medical, Inc. and GV Medical, Inc. He also served as Chairman of the Board and Founder of ATS Medical, Inc., now a part of Medtronic, Inc.


    Manny has received numerous awards and honors for his accomplishments, including the “Living Legend of Medicine” award from the World Society of Cardiothoracic Surgeons.

  • Mr. Tom Kelley

    Partner, IDEO

    Tom is a Partner at IDEO, a global design and innovation firm that helps clients create new products, services, environments, and experiences. He is author of The Art of Innovation, The Ten Faces of Innovation, and the New York Times bestseller, Creative Confidence. Tom is also a leading innovation speaker, regularly addressing business audiences around the globe on how to foster a culture of innovation and tap into the creative potential of their organisations. Tom’s views are frequently included in media outlets including Harvard Business Review, New York Times, and Fast Company. For his work on innovation and his deep interest in Asian business, Tom recently appeared on the cover of Forbes Japan.


    Over the years, Tom has spoken in more than 30 countries, while helping IDEO grow from 15 designers to a staff of more than 600. He has met with more than 1,500 client companies to help them apply the tools of design thinking and innovation in support of their business strategies. Tom first visited Singapore in 1984, and returned for an extended stay in 1985 to consult with Singapore Airlines on innovations in engineering and maintenance operations.


    Tom earned his MBA at UC Berkeley, where he serves as the first-ever Executive Fellow at the Haas School of Business. Tom is also an Executive Fellow at the University of Tokyo.

  • Mr. Michael Gropp

    Former VP, Global Regulatory Strategy, Medtronic

    After 3-1/2 years of direct patient care experience, Michael Gropp joined the Medical Devices and Diagnostics Division (MDD) of Eli Lilly and Company in 1980.  He held various engineering, regulatory affairs, quality assurance, and compliance positions. 


    From 1989 to 1995, Mr. Gropp was Director, Regulatory Affairs, MDD Europe, based in London and Brussels.  In December 1994, when Guidant Corporation was formed as a separate publicly traded company from the medical device subsidiaries of Lilly, Mr. Gropp joined Guidant.  In 1995, he was promoted to Vice President, Quality Assurance, Regulatory Affairs, and Clinical Research for Devices for Vascular Intervention, which became a part of Guidant`s Vascular Intervention Group.  Mr. Gropp then served as Guidant’s Chief Compliance Officer from January 1996 until December 2000, when he took the position of Vice President, Global Regulatory and Public Policy, based in Brussels.  As a result of a merger, Mr. Gropp held the same position with Abbott Vascular from April to November 2006.


    Mr. Gropp was Vice President, Global Regulatory Strategy with Medtronic, Minneapolis, USA, from November 2006 until retiring from corporate life in May 2013.


    Mr. Gropp was a special representative for international affairs and policy to the Board of Directors of the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed)(Washington, D.C.) and Chair of the Eucomed (Brussels) International Affairs Task Force.  He was a member of the Global Harmonization Task Force (GHTF) Steering Committee from its inception in 2000 until GHTF was disbanded in 2012.  He was also a member of GHTF Study Group 1 (pre-market controls).  He was also an active contributor to the Asia Harmonization Working Party from its founding in 1994, and a frequent trainer in regional conferences.  Mr. Gropp has led efforts to include medical device regulatory harmonisation in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Life Sciences Innovation Forum and was a member of the advisory board to the APEC Harmonization Center in Seoul.  He has served as a member of the Scientific Advisory Group to the World Health Organization’s International Clinical Trials Registry Platform project.


    On behalf of Eucomed, Mr. Gropp was Co-Chair of the Global Medical Technology Alliance (GMTA), a group of national medical technology associations focused on international policy advocacy.


    In October 2010, Mr. Gropp received the Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society (RAPS) Richard E. Greco Award in recognition of his work to help harmonize global medical device regulations and advocate for regulatory professional development.  In June 2011, he was asked by the RAPS Board of Directors to chair the newly-formed Global Advisory Council to develop proposals for how RAPS can help develop professional regulatory capacity, especially in less developed economies.


    In 2011, 2012, and 2013, Mr. Gropp was invited to give the inaugural lecture for the Stanford University (Palo Alto, California) Global Biodesign course.  In May 2013, he was elected to the Board of Overseers of Whitman College, a small private liberal arts college in Washington State, USA.

  • Mr. William Hawkins

    Ex-CEO, Medtronic

    Mr. William A. Hawkins, III (“Bill”), joined Immucor, Inc., a TPG portfolio company, as CEO in October

    2011. He also serves as Senior Advisor to TPG’s Healthcare Division. He served as Chairman and CEO of Medtronic (NYSE) from 2007 to 2011, one of the world’s largest and most innovative medical technology companies. He was President and COO of Medtronic from 2004 to 2008, and served as Senior Vice President and President of Vascular from 2001 to 2004.


    Bill was President and CEO of Novoste Corp. (NASDAQ) from 1998 to 2001. He served as Corporate Vice President at American Home Products from 1997 to 1998. Bill was President of Ethicon Endo-Surgery for Johnson & Johnson from 1995 to 1997. Previous to that, he held executive positions at Guidant Corp., and Eli Lilly & Co. He began his medical technology career with Carolina Medical Electronics in 1977.