Todd has over 30 years of accounting, finance, tax, private equity, and venture capital experience.  Prior to joining Portal, Todd served as CFO for a private equity group where he has also supported multiple portfolio companies in the CFO role as well as Senior Tax Analyst for a public company owned by the group.  In addition, Todd managed the family office for the principal of the private equity group where he was responsible for investment analysis and due diligence, risk management, cash management, tax compliance and planning, and estate planning.  Prior to that, Todd spent four years with the accounting firm of Price Waterhouse Coopers LLP representing the firm’s audit and tax practice.

As a Managing Director and General Counsel, Derek loves working at the dynamic intersection of science and law, dedicating his expertise to drive innovation and create meaningful impact for patients.  Derek has over 20 years of industry and law firm experience, working in both large pharma and start-up environments to support projects with small molecules, biologics, cell therapies, biotechnology, and devices.  As in-house counsel at Takeda, Baxter, and Myeloid Therapeutics, Derek handled a wide range of legal matters, including intellectual property, litigation, transactions, and legal operations.  Earlier in his career, he worked with McDermott Will & Emery and Locke Lord, representing pharmaceutical companies in patent litigations.  Prior to law, Derek worked various jobs related to the life sciences, including as a cGMP engineer and a research assistant.

Ritu Shah is joining Portal as Managing Director, focused on portfolio company development and value creation by providing interim leadership to position and accelerated seeded companies to the next round of funding.

She has a proven track record in the biopharma industry with success in leading four successful mergers & acquisitions along with new company formation and operations. Ritu has led several drug development campaigns with emphasis on strategic and therapeutic portfolio management across private and public pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Ritu has spent over two decades in pharma drug development, of which the last five years were in biotech.

Mike joins Portal to help build consistency in the firm’s day-to-day logistical operations. His background has been dedicated to helping organizations and campaigns manage extreme growth, while thinking through problems before they occur. Mike’s prior roles include Director of Corporate Business Development and Licensing at Shinola where he led a national growth through new market opportunities, Personal Aide to former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and served as National Advance Coordinator for President Obama in The White House and ’08 Presidential campaign. Mike is originally from Michigan, graduated from Michigan State University and has resided in Chicago since 2010 with his wife and two children.

Shahila Christie is the Managing Director of Strategic Growth at Portal Innovations. Over her 20 yr career Shahila spent the first decade as an academic researcher and then moved into the startup space where she enjoyed driving scientific strategy from a business perspective. She has held various roles including founding two startups as spinouts from universities, consulting for startup companies, followed by leading the clinical efforts for a medical device company in the oncology diagnostic space. In her current role Shahila ties these varied experiences together to help Portal Innovations grow and expand. Her role focuses on understanding life science ecosystems in cities beyond Chicago and building and implementing the Portal playbook to launch the platform in cities of interest nationwide.

In addition to her professional role, Shahila is an active Women In Bio member functioning in leadership roles over the years and also served as the Chicago Chapter President in 2020. Shahila has a PhD in Biochemistry from Loyola University in Chicago and did her postdoctoral work in drug discovery and development at University of Illinois.

An entrepreneur, investor, and attorney, Patrick brings more than 20 years of experience in health tech and life sciences, including executive leadership positions at Arches Technology, Outcome Health, and closerlook. Patrick was a Co-Founder and Executive Director of MATTER, a Chicago healthcare technology startup center and innovation hub. He helped build biotechnology companies MediChem Life Sciences and Advanced Life Sciences, both of which he helped take public as chief legal executive.

John is a proven leader with a track record of bringing valuable corporate, academic, and civic enterprises from concept to reality, including Advanced Life Sciences, Chicago Innovation Mentors, MATTER, and the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Chicago. John is Co-Founder and Chairman of Pyxis Oncology, Executive Chairman of ClostraBio, and Board member at Grove Biopharma. Over the course of his career, John has successfully raised more than $345 million of private and philanthropic capital to fund the development of transformative organizations.