Board of directors of Galapagos NV

Board of directors
CSR report

Composition of Galapagos NV’s board of directors

Onno van de Stolpe – Please refer to the Composition of Galapagos NV’s executive committee for a biography.

Rajesh Parekh, MA, DPhil has served as the Chairman of our board of directors since 2004. Dr. Parekh is a General Partner at Advent Life Sciences LLP, which he joined in 2006. During an academic career at Oxford University, he co-founded Oxford GlycoSciences PLC, where he served as Chief Scientific Officer and Chief Executive Officer from 1988 until its sale to Celltech Group PLC (now UCB SA) in 2003. He has founded or served on the boards of several life sciences companies in the United States and Europe including Avila Therapeutics, Inc., EUSA Pharma (Europe) Limited, Biocartis NV, Amsterdam Molecular Therapeutics (AMT) Holding NV (now uniQure), Aura, Inc., Itara Ltd., Cellnovo SA, Artax, Inc., and Project Paradise Limited. He was also a member of the supervisory board of the Novartis Venture Fund. Dr. Parekh currently serves as a member of the board of directors of Advent Venture Partners, Advent Life Sciences LLP, Aleta, Inc., Alpha Anomeric SA, Amphista Therapeutics Ltd., Arrakis, Inc., Aura Biosciences, Capella BioSciences Ltd., Levicept Limited, PE Limited, Pheno Therapeutics Ltd., Tridek-One Therapeutics SAS, and Zikani, Inc. He received his MA in Biochemistry and DPhil in Molecular Medicine from the University of Oxford, where he has also been a Senior Research Fellow and Professor.

Howard Rowe, JD has served as a member of our board of directors since 2010. Mr. Rowe is Managing Director at Hayfin Capital Management LLP. Prior to joining Hayfin Capital Management, he was a Managing Director with The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. where he had multiple healthcare responsibilities over his 12 years at the firm. His most recent roles at Goldman Sachs were as part of the European Special Situations and Principal Strategies teams where he established and led the private healthcare investing effort. During that time he served on the boards of EUSA Pharma (Europe) Limited, Healthcare Brands International Limited, SmallBone Innovations, Inc., MedAvante, Inc. and Ikonisys, Inc. Prior to his investing activities, Mr. Rowe was a senior member of the European Healthcare Investment Banking team, where he advised numerous corporate clients on M&A and corporate finance activities. Before joining Goldman Sachs, he was a corporate lawyer with the law firm Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. Mr. Rowe received his Bachelor of Science in Psychobiology from the University of Southern California and his JD from Harvard Law School. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Managers of Paradigm Spine LLC.

Katrine Bosley has served as a member of our board of directors since 2013. Ms. Bosley served as the President, Chief Executive Officer and member of the board of directors of Editas Medicine, Inc. from June 2014 to March 2019. Prior to joining Editas, she was the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at The Broad Institute from 2013 to 2014. From 2009 to 2012, she was President, Chief Executive Officer and member of the board of directors of Avila Therapeutics, Inc., which was acquired by Celgene Corporation in 2012. She served as President, Celgene Avilomics Research at Celgene in 2012. Prior to her time at Avila Therapeutics she was Vice President, Strategic Operations at Adnexus, a Bristol-Myers Squibb R&D Company, and was Vice President, Business Development at Adnexus Therapeutics, Inc. before that. Ms. Bosley joined Adnexus Therapeutics from Biogen Idec, Inc. where she had roles in business development, commercial operations and portfolio strategy in the United States and Europe. Ms. Bosley graduated from Cornell University with a B.A. in Biology. She served on the board of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization and currently serves on the boards of Genocea Biosciences, Inc., and of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Institute. Ms. Bosley also serves as chairman of the board of Arrakis Therapeutics.

Mary Kerr, Ph.D., has served as a member of our board of directors since 26 July 2016. Dr. Kerr, a UK national, is Chief Executive Officer and director at NeRRe Therapeutics and Chief Executive Officer and director at KaNDy Therapeutics. Prior to her appointment at NeRRe, Dr. Kerr held a range of senior leadership roles at GSK over more than 20 years, most recently as Senior Vice President and Global Franchise leader for the Immuno-inflammation and Infectious Diseases franchise. Dr. Kerr was a founding member and on the Corporate Executive team of ViiV Healthcare where she led a turnaround in the performance of the HIV business in Europe. She has spent the majority of her career on the R&D commercial interface in global strategy and regional operational roles, predominantly in the specialty and orphan space. Dr. Kerr gained a Ph.D. in Pharmacology at the University of Bradford, did post-doctoral research at the Michigan Cancer Foundation in Detroit and has an MBA from the University of Kingston.

Peter Guenter has served as a member of our board of directors since 30 April 2019. Mr. Guenter has been Chief Executive Officer of Almirall since 1 October 2017. Prior to joining Almirall, he worked at Sanofi for 22 years, most recently as Executive Vice President Diabetes and Cardiovascular Global Business Unit. During his tenure at Sanofi, he held many senior positions including Vice President Eastern Europe and Northern Europe, Vice President Business Management and Support, General Manager Germany, Senior Vice President Europe, Executive Vice President Global Commercial Operations and Executive Vice President General Medicine and Emerging Markets. He was a member of Sanofi’s Executive Committee from 2013 till August 2017. Before joining Sanofi, he held different positions in sales and marketing at Smith Kline and Ciba Geigy. Mr. Guenter is currently also a member of the board of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA). He is a Belgian citizen and holds a Master’s Degree in Physical Education from the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Ghent.

Daniel O’Day has served as a member of our board of directors since 22 October 2019. Daniel O’Day joined Gilead in 2019 to lead the biopharmaceutical company, which has more than 11,000 employees around the world. Prior to Gilead, Mr. O’Day served as the chief executive officer of Roche Pharmaceuticals. His career at Roche spanned more than three decades, during which he held a number of executive positions in the company’s pharmaceutical and diagnostics divisions in North America, Europe and Asia. During his time at Roche, Mr. O’Day demonstrated vision and leadership, helping to engineer the acquisitions of Flatiron Health and Foundation Medicine in 2018. He served as a member of the company’s Corporate Executive Committee, as well as on a number of public and private boards, including Genentech. Mr. O’Day is currently the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Gilead Sciences, Inc. and a member of the board of directors of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA). Mr. O’Day is a U.S. citizen and holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Georgetown University and an MBA from Columbia University in New York.

Linda Higgins, Ph.D. has served as a member of our board of directors since 22 October 2019. Linda Slanec Higgins, Ph.D., joined Gilead Sciences, Inc. in 2010 and is currently Sr. Vice President Research, External Innovation. In her first nine years at Gilead she led Biology, significantly expanding the therapeutic area scope and capabilities of the department. She previously served as the President & CEO of InteKrin Therapeutics and as Head of Research at Scios, Inc., a Johnson & Johnson company, where she provided leadership for drug discovery, preclinical development, and translational medicine. Dr. Higgins is passionate about biopharmaceutical discovery and development, and has been dedicated to excellence in applied scientific research since 1991. She has led projects and departments in multiple therapeutic areas including CNS, fibrosis, inflammation, cardiovascular, virology, and oncology. Dr. Higgins built many of these as new areas at Scios and Gilead. Dr. Higgins is a U.S. citizen and earned an A.B. in Behavioral Physiology from Kenyon College, a Ph.D. in Neurosciences from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, and completed postdoctoral training in Molecular Genetics at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the University of California, Berkeley. She has authored over 50 original peer reviewed scientific papers and invited reviews and is an inventor on over a dozen patents.

About Galapagos NV’s board of directors

Galapagos NV’s board of directors consists of minimum five and maximum nine members, including the Chairman and the CEO. The Chairman is a non-executive director and does not hold the office of CEO. At least three directors are independent. On 31 December 2019, the board of directors consisted of eight members, four of whom are independent within the meaning of article 526ter of the Belgian Companies Code (and as from 1 January 2020, article 7:87 of the New Belgian Companies Code). 

The directors are appointed by the shareholders’ meeting upon the proposal of the board, for a renewable term of up to four years. When a position on the board becomes vacant, the other directors may temporarily fill the mandate until the shareholders’ meeting appoints a new director. The nomination and remuneration committee nominates, for the approval of the board, candidates to fill vacancies and advises on proposals for appointment originating from shareholders, in each case taking into account Galapagos’ needs and the selection criteria determined by the board.

Except for Mr. Van de Stolpe, all board members are non-executive directors.

In 2019, the following persons were members of the board: Dr. Parekh (Chairman), Mr. Van de Stolpe (CEO), Dr. Cautreels (until 30 April 2019), Mr. Rowe, Ms. Bosley, Dr. Mummery (until 30 April 2019), Dr. Kerr, Mr. Guenter (from 30 April 2019), Mr. O’Day (from 22 October 2019), and Dr. Higgins (from 22 October 2019). Mr. Rowe, Ms. Bosley, Dr. Kerr and Mr. Guenter were appointed as independent directors within the meaning of article 526ter of the Belgian Companies Code (and as from 1 January 2020, article 7:87 of the New Belgian Companies Code).

In 2019, the board thus consisted of (i) three women (except between 30 April 2019 and 22 October 2019 when the board consisted of two women) and (ii) four men until 22 October 2019 and five men from 22 October 2019, representing four different nationalities and different age categories.



Year of birth


Until 30 April 2019


From 30 April 2019


From 22 October 2019

Onno van de Stolpe



Raj Parekh



Werner Cautreels(1)



Howard Rowe

British and U.S.


Katrine Bosley



Christine Mummery(1)

British and Dutch


Mary Kerr



Peter Guenter(2)



Daniel O'Day(3)



Linda Higgins(3)



During 2019, Galapagos NV complied with the Law of 28 July 2011 with respect to gender diversification in the board of directors, and the board will continue to monitor future compliance. In proposing candidates, particular consideration is given to diversity in gender, age, nationality, educational and professional background, as well as complementary skills, knowledge and experience. The profiles of all board members are included in this report and available on

The board’s role is to pursue the long-term success of Galapagos. The board does so by assuming the authority and responsibilities assigned to it by Belgian corporate law and by combining entrepreneurial leadership with appropriate risk assessment and management. Each of the directors’ expertise and experience is exemplified by the varied professional activities they carry out and offices they hold. During its meetings in 2019, the board dealt with matters pertaining to, among other things, our strategy and growth, the strategic transaction with Gilead, the evaluation of other business development opportunities, convening of the shareholders’ meetings and preparation of resolutions to be submitted for approval to the shareholders, and review and approval of our financial reporting.

In 2019, the board of directors held four regular meetings, nine meetings by telephone conference to discuss specific matters and two meetings in the presence of a notary (relating to the issuance of Warrant Plan 2019 and Warrant Plan 2019 RMV and relating to the closing of the Gilead transaction). The first meeting in the presence of a notary was attended by Dr. Cautreels and Mr. Van de Stolpe via telephone conference; all other directors were represented by proxy. The second meeting in the presence of a notary was attended by Mr. Van de Stolpe, Mr. Guenter and Dr. Kerr via telephone conference; all other directors were represented by proxy. The attendance rate for the other meetings was as follows: Dr. Parekh: 92%; Mr. Van de Stolpe: 85%; Dr. Cautreels: 100%; Mr. Rowe: 100%; Ms. Bosley: 85%; Dr. Mummery: 67%; Dr. Kerr: 92%; Mr. Guenter: 80%; Mr. O’Day: 100%; and Dr. Higgins: 100%. The overall attendance rate was 90%. In addition, certain board members also attended a number of review meetings with scientific staff of the group.

The board of directors acts as a collegial body. A formal evaluation of the board and its committees was initiated in December 2017 and was completed in March 2018. Each board member provided feedback through individual assessment forms. The results were presented on an aggregate basis by the secretary of the board and served as a basis for discussion by the full board. This evaluation specifically addressed the functioning of the board, the size and composition of the board, the interaction between the board and the executive management, and the functioning of the audit committee and the nomination and remuneration committee.