Board of Directors


Rob B Thomas AO, BEc, MSAA, SF Fin, FAICD, FRSN

Independent non-executive director (appointed 4 December 2013)

Chairman from 13 June 2014

Mr Thomas has a strong background in financial services and capital markets and is non-executive director of several Australian listed companies. Formerly he was a partner of Potter Partners (now UBS) where he was also Head of Research.

He is the former CEO of County NatWest Securities and then became CEO and then Chairman of Citibank Corporate and Investment Bank in Australia. Mr Thomas has also held the position of Chairman at Australian Wealth Management Ltd (ultimately IOOF Ltd), TAL (Australia’s largest life insurance company) and Heartware Inc, the second largest global manufacturer of left ventricular assist heart pumps.

For many years Mr Thomas was regarded as one of Australia’s leading financial analysts and regularly lectured with FINSIA. He has considerable expertise in Mergers & Acquisition and capital markets including advising on the floats of Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Qantas, and vast experience in Audit and Risk Management. Mr Thomas is also approved under the NSW prequalification scheme for Audit and Risk Committee Independent Chairs and Members for government/public sector agencies and has previously served as the Chairman of the Audit and Risk Committee of Virgin Australia Limited (for 11 years), Heartware Inc, REVA Medical Ltd and the State Library of NSW.

Mr Thomas holds a Bachelor of Economics from Monash University, a Diploma of Business (Accounting) from Swinburne and is a fellow of FINSIA. He is also a Master Stockbroker and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Specific skills and experience areas

In addition to Mr Thomas’ significant finance and M&A/capital markets experience, Mr Thomas’ non-executive roles with various ASX listed companies have deepened his skills and experience in relation to accounting/corporate finance, audit and risk; governance; licensing and commercialisation of innovation; strategy and risk management; OH&S; and remuneration. He has also had significant experience with US based companies as they progress from research to commercialisation.


Jacinth (Jackie) K Fairley BSc, BVSc (Hons), MBA, GAICD, FTSE

Chief Executive Officer and Director (appointed 1 July 2006) 

Dr Jackie Fairley has approximately 30 years of operational experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries working in senior management roles with companies including CSL and Faulding (now Pfizer). In those roles she had responsibilities which included clinical, regulatory, business development, product development management and general management.  At Faulding she was responsible for Global Product Development, Regulatory Affairs and Business Development for Faulding’s Hospital Business which operated in more than 60 countries.

Jackie holds first class honours degrees in Science (pharmacology and pathology) and Veterinary Science from Melbourne University and was a practicing veterinary surgeon prior to joining CSL in 1989. Whilst at CSL she obtained an MBA from the Melbourne Business School where she was the recipient of the prestigious Clemenger Medal. Jackie is also a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. 

Jackie currently sits on the board of the Melbourne Business School and is Chair of its Remuneration and Nomination Committee. She is a non-executive director of listed investment company Mirrabooka Investments Limited, and is a past member of the Federal Government’s Commonwealth Science Council and Pharmaceutical Industry Working Group, and the Federal Ministerial Biotechnology Advisory Council. Jackie is also on the Investment Committee of the Carnegie Innovation Fund.

Specific skills and experience areas

Approaching 30 years’ experience in executive roles up to and including as CEO and executive director of ASX listed and unlisted pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, Dr Fairley’s experience covers all key areas described in Starpharma’s Board skills matrix. In particular, Dr Fairley has significant leadership skills in healthcare and scientific research; pharmaceutical development; international experience; licensing and commercialisation of innovation; business development; strategy and risk management; and M&A/capital markets.


Richard A Hazleton BSChE, MSChE, MBA, HonDrEng, HonDrCommSc

Independent non-executive director (appointed 1 December 2006) – resides in the United States

Mr Hazleton is a former Chairman and CEO of US-based global corporation Dow Corning. He joined Dow Corning in 1965 and held numerous positions in engineering, manufacturing and finance, both in the US and Europe. He was appointed as CEO of the company in 1993, and Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO in 1994. During his career with Dow Corning, Mr Hazleton performed the roles of European Area Vice President and Director of Finance, and after returning to the US, Corporate Controller and Chief Accounting Officer. In this latter global role he was responsible for the preparation of all public financial reports, and  relationships with financial regulatory agencies and independent auditors.  Mr Hazleton retired from Dow Corning in 2001. 

Mr Hazleton is based in the US and brings to the table an international lens on product development, manufacturing, science and technology. He has significant experience in the areas of strategy, accounting/corporate finance and audit and risk. 

Mr Hazleton has served on the boards of the American Chemistry Council and the Chemical Bank and Trust Company (Midland, MI, USA) as well as several non-profit social service agencies in Michigan and Belgium.

Specific skills and experience areas

Having held various executive roles up to and including as Chairman and CEO of Dow Corning over a 36 year period as well as non-executive directorships, Mr Hazleton brings the following significant skills and experience to the Board of Starpharma – international experience; regulation/public policy, licensing and commercialisation of innovation, science and technology; governance; strategy and risk management; accounting/corporate finance, audit and risk; OH&S; and remuneration. Mr Hazleton has been assessed as an independent non-executive director notwithstanding his 12-year tenure. The corporate memory he provides is advantageous and such tenure is commonplace in the pharmaceutical/biotech sector, due to the longer development timelines involved.


Zita Peach BSc, GAICD, FAMI

Independent non-executive director (appointed 1 October 2011) 

Ms Peach has more than 25 years of commercial experience in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical devices and health services industries. She worked for major industry players such as CSL Limited and Merck Sharp & Dohme, the Australian subsidiary of Merck Inc. Ms Peach’s most recent executive position was as the Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand and Executive Vice President, South Asia Pacific for Fresenius Kabi, a leading provider of pharmaceutical products and medical devices to hospitals. Previously, Ms Peach was Vice President, Business Development, for CSL Limited, a position she held for ten years. 

Ms Peach has substantial international and local expertise in the areas of pharmaceutical/medical device product development, commercialisation of products and technologies, marketing and sales, licensing, M&A and international expansions. She has overseen manufacturing, logistics, regulatory affairs, quality assurance, clinical services, human resources, finance, information technology, public policy, business development, marketing and sales at Managing Director and CEO level. 

Ms Peach is a Non-Executive Director of the ASX-listed AirXpanders, Inc., Monash IVF Group Limited, Pacific Smiles Group Limited and Visioneering Technologies, Inc. Ms Peach is also a member of the Hudson Institute of Medical Research Board. 

Ms Peach is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a Fellow of the Australian Marketing Institute.

Specific skills and experience areas

With over 25 years’ experience in various senior executive roles within ASX listed and international pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, as well as numerous non-executive directorships in the biotechnology/pharmaceutical sector, Ms Peach’s experience covers all key areas described in Starpharma’s Board skills matrix. In particular, Ms Peach has substantial expertise as a leader in healthcare and scientific research; pharmaceutical/product development; licensing and commercialisation of innovation; science and technology; sales, marketing and business development; strategy and risk management; remuneration; and M&A/capital markets.


Peter R Turvey BA/LLB, MAICD

Independent non-executive director (appointed 19 March 2012)

Mr Turvey has had more than 30 years of experience in the biotech/pharmaceutical industry having been former Executive Vice President Licensing, Group General Counsel and Company Secretary of global biopharmaceutical company CSL, retiring in 2011. 

Mr Turvey played a key role in the transformation of CSL from a government owned enterprise, through ASX listing in 1994, to a global plasma and biopharmaceutical company. He also had responsibility for the protection and licensing of CSL's intellectual property and for risk management within CSL, which included management of the internal audit function, reporting to the Audit & Risk Management Committee of the Board as well as being the Chairman of the Corporate Risk Management Committee. In his senior executive role at CSL, Mr Turvey was actively involved in CSL’s extensive M&A and equity capital raising activities over a 15 year period, including during the time of the float of CSL as a publicly listed company. This experience has been further enhanced by Mr Turvey’s non-executive directorships of various ASX listed biotechnology companies. 

In addition to his expertise in corporate finance, audit and risk management, Mr Turvey has extensive experience in commercialisation and pharmaceutical product development. 

Mr Turvey is currently a principal of Foursight Associates Pty Ltd and a director of Victorian Government owned entity Agriculture Victoria Services Pty Ltd.

Specific skills and experience areas

With over 30 years of executive experience in the biotechnology industry of which 20 years were at CSL, followed by non-executive directorships at a number of ASX listed pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, Mr Turvey has significant leadership skills and experience in healthcare and/or scientific research; pharmaceutical/product development; international experience and skills in regulation/public policy; licensing and commercialisation of innovation; business development; governance; strategy; risk management; audit and risk; and M&A/capital markets.