Innovation born from frustration.
With over 20 years of experience as a practicing laparoscopic surgeon, Dr. Wayne Poll has had thorough experience in the frustrations of compromised vision during laparoscopic procedures for both traditional and robotic assisted surgeries. Through keen determination, foresight and true innovation, Dr. Poll has developed a very simple yet highly effective concept for a unique laparoscopic visualization system. Dr. Poll founded Minimally Invasive Devices, Inc. (MID) with an expressed goal of eliminating the need to ever remove the laparoscope for cleaning and defogging while substantially improving the consistency and clarity of visualization during laparoscopic procedures.
Wayne Poll, MD
Founder and CEO
Vice President of Operations
Chief Financial Officer
National Sales Director
Trudie L. Seeger, Ph.D.
Vice President of Regulatory, Quality Assurance and Clinical Affairs
Vice President of Manufacturing
Director of Marketing
Board of Directors
Fred M. Schwarzer
Chairman of the Board
Fred has extensive operational and fundraising experience, including the development of corporate partnerships and the structuring of venture capital investments and acquisitions.
Prior to founding Charter Life Sciences, Fred was the chief executive officer and then chairman of Heska (HSKA). During his tenure at Heska, Fred completed corporate partnerships with Bayer and Novartis, completed seven acquisitions and Heska’s initial public offering and follow-on public offering. During this time, Heska also obtained its first FDA approval, launched its first products, created its sales and marketing effort and grew its revenue to approximately $40 million.
Fred has also been the president and chief executive officer of Mingly Capital Corporation, which was focused on developing cross-border opportunities in life sciences and information technology. He was also executive director of the Mingly Corporation Limited (listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange) and prior to that he was a senior vice president of C.M. Capital, a diversified asset management company.
Fred began his professional career as an attorney representing technology companies and venture capitalists. In 1985, he was made a partner with Pillsbury, Madison & Sutro (now Pillsbury, Winthrop) and in 1988 he founded the firm of General Counsel Associates (now GCA Law Partners).
Fred holds a JD from the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law and a BA from the University of Michigan.
Mike is the President and CEO of Enable Injections, LLC, a start-up company focusing on a unique technology for the injection of biologic drugs. He is the founder and a Director of AtriCure, Inc. (Nasdaq ATRC), the world leader in the surgical treatment of Atrial Fibrillation. Mike also holds Board positions at Minimally Invasive Devices, BioOhio and the Commercial Advisory Board at the University of Cincinnati. Mike was recently appointed by the Governor to the Third Frontier Advisory Board, a $2.3BB state funded initiative to accelerate high tech job creation in Ohio.
Mike has over 30 years of experience in the medical device industry in a broad variety of technical and clinical areas. He is the founder of five medical device companies and holds over 100 issued and pending US patents. Mike previously held positions as the Chairman and CEO of AtriCure, and the Founder and Chairman of Enable Medical, a surgical device manufacturer that was acquired in 2005. Mike was at Ethicon Endosurgery from 1988-2004, where he headed up all internal new product development. Mike held Engineering positions at Siemens/Pacesetter from 1986 to 1988, and at Cordis Corporation from 1981 to 1986. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Physics and a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan.
Brent joined Canaan in 1999 as a member of Kauffman Fellows Program. Since joining the firm, he has led a number of successful investments in leading life sciences companies such as DexCom (DXCM – IPO), Revivant (ZOLL – Acq.), Peninsula Pharmaceuticals (JNJ – Acq.), Cerexa (FRX – Acq.), Calixa (CBST – Acq.), Durata Therapeutics (DRTX – IPO), and Elevation Pharmaceuticals (DNPUF – Acq.).
Prior to joining Canaan, Brent worked in both commercial and technical roles at General Surgical Innovations, Ethicon Endo-Surgery (J&J), and IAP Research. His technical expertise as a professional engineer with several patents to his credit is an asset to Canaan’s innovation-driven portfolio companies.
Brent currently serves on several boards including Data Sciences International, a pioneer and the global leader in implantable wireless sensors for medical research; Durata Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company pursuing late-stage clinical development of novel antibiotic programs; Endogastric Solutions, the leading company offering medical devices for treatment of reflux disease; Minimally Invasive Devices, Inc. (MID), developer of a franchise of products that substantially improve visualization during laparoscopic surgery; and Relievant Medsystems, maker of minimally invasive devices to relieve chronic back pain. Brent earned an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College after graduating with BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Dayton.
Seasoned healthcare investor Wende Hutton is passionate about identifying, investing in and building companies that are revolutionizing the practice of medicine. She joined Canaan in 2004, bringing diverse expertise from across the entire medical spectrum. Over the last 20 years, Wende has facilitated the market entrance of over 11 novel and lifesaving medical devices, new drugs and diagnostics. Her track record is a testament to her leadership and includes the initial public offerings of six companies, most recently Chimerix (CMRX) in April 2013, and the acquisition of four more biomedical companies including the recent acquisition of BiPar Sciences, a leader in the development of a potential new class of tumor-selective drugs, by Sanofi-Aventis. Wende began her venture career at Mayfield Fund in 1993, where she was a General Partner in the life sciences group until 2001. During her tenure at Mayfield, Wende incubated Heartstream (HPQ) and Northstar Neuroscience (NSTR), working closely with those founding teams. Earlier in her career, Wende held senior operational management positions at GenPharm International and Nellcor in business development and marketing.
Wende sits on the boards of Aldea Pharmaceuticals, Butterfly Health, Chimerix (CMRX), Dermira, Labrys Biologics, ReVision Optics, Theraclone Sciences and Transcend Medical Her previous board seats include Alsius (ALUS) , Apieron (acquired by Aerocrine), BiPar Sciences (acquired by Sanofi), Calibra Medical (acquired by Johnson & Johnson/LifeScan), Heartstream (acquired by Hewlett Packard), Micro Therapeutics (acquired by ev3,Inc.), Northstar Neuroscience (NSTR), Orquest (acquired by Johnson & Johnson), and SenoRx (acquired by C. R. Bard).
Wende holds an AB in human biology from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard Business School, where she was a Baker Scholar. She is active with several community service groups including serving on the board of FACE AIDS and in leadership roles with the National Charity League Stanford chapter. Beyond her community service involvements, Wende’s first love is a field biology hike or lecture.
Jeff served as the President of Global Sales at NuVasive, Inc. from October 2011 to March 31, 2013. Previously, Mr. Rydin served as Executive Vice President of Sales - Americas at NuVasive, Inc., from January 1, 2010 to October 2011 and Senior Vice President, U.S. Sales from December 5, 2005 to January 1, 2010. He was responsible for Nuvasive, Inc. U.S. sales efforts, including the oversight of strategic sales development, sales administration, and sales training. Prior to joining NuVasive, Mr. Rydin was an Area Vice President at DePuy Spine, Inc. from January 2003 to December 2005.
Mr. Rydin has over 20 years of sales experience in the medical device industry. He served as Vice President of Sales at Orquest, Inc. from December 2001 to January 2003. Prior to that, he served as Director of Sales at Symphonix Devices, Inc. from April 2000 to December 2001 and as Director of Sales at General Surgical Innovations, Inc. from October 1996 to March 2000. He has a vast degree of successful sales experience from initially Xerox, US Surgical, and Baxter. He has a track record of building dynamic and highly successful sales teams. Mr. Rydin received a B.A. degree in Social Ecology from the University of California, Irvine.