Trevena CEO Max Gowen leaves

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After almost 11 years in the position
  • Accolades, praise and thanks for Gowen
  • Carrie Bourdow taking over
  • Gowen said 63 words

(exechange) — Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania, April 6, 2018 — Max Gowen, chief executive of Trevena, leaves. Her departure is made public at an early stage. As announced by Trevena, Inc. in a news release published on Thursday, April 5, 2018 and in a regulatory filing published on Friday, April 6, 2018, Maxine (Max) Gowen, Chief Executive Officer, leaves the biopharmaceutical company after almost 11 years in the position, effective October 1, 2018.

It is the end of an era.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CEOs who departed over the past 12 months was 9.5 years, according to data compiled by exechange. Only 37 percent of the CEOs who departed over the past 12 months left the position after more than 10 years.

Gowen’s duties will be taken over by Carrie L. Bourdow, currently Chief Operating Officer of Trevena, Inc.

No reason given

In the announcement, Trevena did not explicitly explain the reason for Gowen’s move, opening the door for speculation.

Precise information about Gowen’s future plans was not immediately available.


Trevena said: “President and Chief Executive Officer Maxine Gowen, Ph.D., will retire on October 1, 2018.”

Trevena further said: “On April 4, 2018, Maxine Gowen, Ph.D., President, Chief Executive Officer and director of Trevena, Inc. … formally notified the Company’s Board of Directors … of her intention to retire as an employee from the Company, effective as of October 1, 2018.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Trevena, Inc. since November 2015.

Chaired by Leon (Lonnie) O. Moulder, Jr.

Trevena, Inc. is chaired by Leon (Lonnie) O. Moulder, Jr.

Moulder has served as Chairman of the Company’s Board since June 2013.

In the position of CEO since 2007

Maxine Gowen founded Trevena, Inc. in 2007 and has been its Chief Executive Officer and President since November 2007. Gowen is the founding President and CEO of Trevena.

Prior to this Gowen held a variety of leadership roles at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) over a period of fifteen years.

As Senior Vice President for the Center of Excellence for External Drug Discovery (CEEDD), she developed an innovative new approach to externalizing drug discovery in big pharma.

Gowen was previously President and Managing Partner at SR One, the venture capital subsidiary of GSK, where she led its investments in and served on the board of directors of numerous companies.

Until 2002 Gowen was Vice President, Drug Discovery, Musculoskeletal Diseases at GSK, responsible for drug discovery and early development for osteoporosis, arthritis and metastatic bone disease.

Gowen held a tenured academic position in the School of Pharmacology, University of Bath, UK from 1989-1992.

She has authored more than 100 refereed scientific publications.

Gowen graduated with a B.Sc. in biochemistry from the University of Bristol, UK, then received a Ph.D. in cell biology from the University of Sheffield, UK, and received an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Gowen served on the board of Human Genome Sciences (HGSI) until its purchase by GSK in July 2012.

She currently serves on the board of Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. (AKBA) since July 2014 and Idera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IDRA) since January 2016, both public biopharmaceutical companies, and on the boards of the state and national biotechnology industry associations, Life Sciences PA and BIO, respectively.

Gowen will continue to serve on the Trevena Board of Directors.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Max Gowen’s move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange suggests that push-out forces may have contributed to the change.

Read the full story in the exechange report 15.2018 ($).