JEFFREY S. ARONIN
Chairman and CEO
As Chairman and CEO of Paragon Biosciences, Jeffrey Aronin has launched several successful portfolio companies, including: Harmony Biosciences, Qlarity Imaging, Castle Creek Pharma, Emalex Biosciences, and Skyline Biosciences. These portfolio companies are developing innovative therapies for severe diseases. Focus areas include: biopharmaceuticals, AI-enabled life science products, and advanced treatments such as cell and gene therapies.
Previously, Mr. Aronin founded Ovation Pharmaceuticals, where he served as President and CEO from 2000 to 2009, leading an organization that developed medicines which earned four novel drug approvals from the FDA. After Ovation was acquired by Lundbeck A/S in 2009, Mr. Aronin served as CEO of Lundbeck Inc. until 2011.
Jeffrey Aronin also founded Marathon Pharmaceuticals, where he served as Chairman and CEO from 2011 to 2017. Marathon developed medicines for rare diseases, successfully sold five medicines, and earned FDA approval for another, which was subsequently acquired by PTC Therapeutics.
Mr. Aronin’s expertise in novel drug development and venture innovation has made him one of the most impactful and successful leaders in the biosciences sector, by transforming the lives of people treated for complex and severe medical conditions.
Insights Care Magazine recently recognized Mr. Aronin as one of the most influential leaders in healthcare for his extraordinary track record at improving the quality of life of patients with severe diseases, by developing breakthrough medicines to treat those conditions. To do so, Mr. Aronin and his team identify debilitating conditions which may be better treated with a promising therapy—and then invest in, build, and advise bioscience companies to develop those treatments. That approach has attracted the healthcare industry’s most respected investment partners. For example, Mr. Aronin led the $295 million initial equity raise for Harmony Biosciences, which was the largest private equity financing of a privately-held North American biopharmaceutical company in 2017.
Mr. Aronin also devotes extensive energy to civic and philanthropic endeavors. As founder and co-chairman of MATTER—a health-technology startup incubator—Mr. Aronin has led one of Chicago’s most remarkable, philanthropic venture-innovation successes, with over 220 healthcare companies founded and grown since 2015. Mr. Aronin is also a member of The Commercial Club of Chicago and serves on several corporate and civic boards including Discover Financial Services and The Aspen Institute.
As a believer in education as a change agent, Mr. Aronin serves as a mentor to students and young professionals and is also a frequent lecturer at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Business.
Through the Aronin Family Foundation, Jeffrey and his wife Lisa provide millions of dollars in funding for medical innovation, education innovation, and innovative approaches to neighborhood revitalization and economic growth.