Senior executives

Jamie Heywood

Co-Founder, Chairman

An MIT-trained mechanical engineer, Jamie entered the field of translational medicine when his 29 year old brother, Stephen, was diagnosed with ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Described by CNNMoney as one of the 15 companies that will change the world, Jamie co-founded PatientsLikeMe to ensure patient outcomes become the primary driver of the medical care and discovery process. Jamie is also the founder and past CEO of the ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI), the world’s first non-profit biotechnology company. During his tenure at ALS TDI, Jamie helped pioneer an open research model and industrialized therapeutic validation process that made ALS TDI the world’s largest and most comprehensive ALS research program. Jamie has founded or co-founded three other health care companies: AOBiome, Genetic Networks, and TheSocialMedwork, and is an active member of a community of innovators working to bring dramatic improvements to the way we discover, develop and deliver effective health. Jamie and his brother were the subject of Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jonathan Weiner’s biography His Brother’s Keeper and the documentary So Much So Fast.

Ben Heywood

Co-Founder & President

Ben has overseen all stages of PatientsLikeMe’s growth, including financing, expansion of patient communities and business partnerships and product strategy. He also serves as our chief privacy officer. Ben is a frequent speaker at conferences and an expert source for media on patient issues and patient-centered care. Previously, he served in manufacturing and business development roles at Target Therapeutics. Ben earned his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his master’s degree in Business Administration from UCLA’s Anderson Graduate School of Management.

Monique Levy

Executive Vice President, Business Solutions and Partnerships

Monique Levy serves as Executive Vice President, Business Solutions and Partnerships. Monique works with PatientsLikeMe’s life science partners to leverage patient-centered strategies and technologies to transform their operations and meet emerging patient needs. Before joining PatientsLikeMe she was Vice President of Research for the Digital Innovation team at Decision Resources Group. In this role she helped life sciences and technology companies understand how patients, providers and payers are using technology for health, and advised businesses on how to adapt and succeed in fast-changing markets. Monique spent the earlier part of her career in the medical and public sectors, working at global institutions including The World Bank. She also co-founded a bed net business in Zimbabwe for malaria prevention. She holds a bachelor’s degree in international health and development from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and a master’s degree in clinical health psychology from the Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology. 

Joy Morel

Senior Vice President, Marketing, Member Engagement & Business Intelligence

Joy Morel is Senior Vice President, Marketing, Patient Engagement and Business Intelligence. A global marketing strategist with both business-to-business and business-to-consumer branding experience, she leads the team responsible for creating the strategy and programs that attract and engage new members and bring even greater value to our community. Joy reports to Michael Evers, Executive Vice President of Marketing, Technology and Operations. Joy's marketing expertise has been well honed at several leading internet technology companies, including Verisign and AOL, where she developed both direct-to-consumer and business-to-business go-to-market strategies globally. Her background, and deep brand, media and product marketing experience, will be the foundation on which PatientsLikeMe continues to help people with any condition track their health, learn about living with disease and connect with others like them. Joy holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications and psychology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Kim Goodwin

Senior Advisor, Consumer Strategy

Kim works with our leadership team to make sure our research and product offerings are focused on what matters most to patients and consumers. Known worldwide as an expert in user experience, Kim is a frequent international speaker and the author of the 2009 bestseller Designing for the Digital Age, which is heralded as the most comprehensive how-to guide in the field. Kim's experience in healthcare product strategy and design includes diagnostic and treatment devices, consumer health education and tracking, online retail pharmacy, and desktop and tablet-based electronic medical records. Her other clients have included healthcare leaders such as Cardinal Health, Abbott, and Medtronic Diabetes, as well as top consumer brands like Best Buy and Lexus. Previously, Kim served as VP of Product and User Experience, building our internal teams and processes. 

Jason Johnson

Senior Scientific Advisor

Jason works with our leadership team to help define and implement our patient-focused scientific agenda. A leading computational biologist and information science strategist, Jason has been a long-time collaborator with PatientsLikeMe. He was a PatientsLikeMe customer during his 14 years at Merck, where he held senior roles in informatics, R&D and IT. Jason shares his time between PatientsLikeMe and his primary position as the Chief Health Information Officer at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. 

Tony Lucia

Senior Vice President, Technology

Tony leads the Engineering Team, and is responsible for developing PatientsLikeMe’s technical strategy and roadmap to ensure we continue to deliver the innovative solutions and services that help patients living with chronic conditions thrive. Tony brings a unique blend of technology, business and data operations management experience to the company, as well as deep experience in the Healthcare and Life Sciences industries. Previously he was Senior Vice President, Data Strategy, Development and Data Science at IAC Applications, one of the world’s largest distributors of applications across browser, mobile and desktop devices. Tony has also held senior technology positions at John Wiley & Sons, IMS Health and Thomson Reuters, and has established his own business as a healthcare technology advisor, working with co-founders of software companies serving the payer, provider and government markets to develop their go to market strategies and funding requirements. Tony holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management from Mercy College. 

George Parker

Executive Vice President, Human Resources

George oversees all aspects of human resources, with a focus on talent acquisition and development. George has more than 30 years of human resources experience in high growth and established organizations. Before joining PatientsLikeMe, he was Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer at Forum Pharmaceuticals, a pharmaceutical company focused on serious brain diseases. Prior to that, from 2010 to 2015, George was Vice President, Global Human Resources at Molecular Devices, LLC, a life sciences operating company of Danaher Corporation. He has also held senior HR positions at Cyberonics, Inc., Perkinelmer Instruments, and Bayer A.G., where he effectively led organizations through change and growth. George holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Hobart College.

Greg Ploussios

Senior Vice President, General Counsel

Greg oversees all of our legal needs, including licensing, collaboration and commercial agreements, equity financing, privacy, and regulatory compliance. Greg has known us a long time; he served as our outside counsel for over a decade, advising and negotiating PatientsLikeMe’s licensing, collaboration and commercial agreements and representing the company in equity financing, mergers and acquisitions, and other corporate matters. Before joining PatientsLikeMe, Greg was a partner at Foley Hoag LLP in the business department, where he co-chaired the firm’s Strategic Alliance and Licensing Practice Group. Prior to that he was a partner at Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge LLP. Greg’s practice has focused on representing information technology, software, Internet, bioinformatics, and medical device clients with an emphasis on licensing and commercial transactions, as well as venture capital and private equity investments and general corporate representation. He holds a Juris Doctor from Boston University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan, with a double major in English and Political Science.

Jonathan White

Executive Vice President, Research and Development

As Executive Vice President, Research and Development (R&D), Jonathan is responsible for managing the company’s biology, regulatory, research and commercial product development functions. Jonathan is a member of the Senior Leadership Team and reports to Co-founder and President Ben Heywood. 

Most recently Jonathan was Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Offerings for Quintiles. Before that he was Chief Science and Technology Officer at Haemonetics, a publicly-held provider of blood and plasma supplies and services. Jonathan has also worked for more than a decade in the pharmaceutical industry, notably as Senior Vice President of Information Technology, Strategy and Business Innovation at Pfizer, where he led the first efforts to integrate the patient voice into discovery and development.

A neurosurgeon certified by The Royal College of Surgeons of England, Jonathan holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Cambridge and a master’s degree in business administration from France’s INSEAD, one of the world’s largest graduate business schools.


Doug Marttila

Vice President, Engineering

Doug joined PatientsLikeMe in 2010 as an engineer, and initially focused on designing the charts that help members document how they’re doing. In the years since, and as the number of members and conditions covered on the platform continued to grow, he worked on newer ways to visualize health data. Today Doug manages a burgeoning team of engineers who ensure the security and performance of patientslikeme.com. Before he joined the company, Doug was an independent application developer for a range of business clients, and before that a data visualization software developer at Visual i/o. He holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Georgetown University.

Sally Okun, RN, MMHS

Vice President, Policy & Ethics

As Vice President of Advocacy, Policy and Patient Safety, Sally ensures the patient voice, represented in PatientsLikeMe’s member community, is heard, collected and disseminated to affect better treatment, services and care. Sally also serves as the company’s liaison with government and regulatory agencies. She actively participates in national and international discussions to educate policy makers on the benefits of sharing health data, and to ensure patient needs are at the front of the healthcare discussion. In addition, Sally’s position includes responsibility for PatientsLikeMe’s ongoing work in drug safety. She ensures the data collected about treatments and their impact become even more transparent to members and the healthcare community at large.

Sally joined PatientsLikeMe in 2008 and led the team responsible for the website’s medical ontology and curation of patient-reported health data. She has since been a frequent speaker at policy workshops and forums and has contributed to peer reviewed publications and discussion papers for the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and others. A registered nurse for over three decades, Sally’s clinical practice specialized in palliative and end-of-life care. She received her nursing diploma from the Hospital of St. Raphael School of Nursing and holds a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Southern Connecticut State University as well as a master's degree in health and human services management from Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management.

Paul Wicks, PhD

Vice President, Innovation

An internationally recognized expert in the psychological aspects of neurodegenerative conditions, Paul is responsible for the scientific and medical validity of PatientsLikeMe’s research platform. He leads a team of experts charged with conducting scientific research that generates insights from the personal health data shared by patient members. Under Paul’s direction, the PatientsLikeMe R&D team has produced numerous peer-reviewed publications in major scientific journals. These include Nature Biotechnology, Movement Disorders and European Journal of Neurology. In addition to working with the world’s foremost research organizations, the R&D team also provides professional services to the company’s commercial partners. Prior to joining PatientsLikeMe, Paul worked directly with patients from around the world to study cognition in rare forms of ALS and the psychological consequences of Parkinson’s disease.  A frequent speaker on the power of personalized medicine in improving health outcomes, Paul has received numerous awards including the 2011 MIT Technology Review Humanitarian of the Year and the British Neuropsychiatry Association prize for best speaker, an honor he has won twice. Paul was named a TED Fellow in 2012, and in 2013 was a TED conference presenter. He completed his Ph.D. thesis at King’s College London at the age of 24.

Renee Deehan-Kenney, Ph.D.

Vice President, Biocomputing

A molecular biologist by training, Renee has spent the last decade guiding drug discovery and biomarker development by designing and building high resolution molecular models of disease, and creating systems that find meaning in big biological data. Her team of biologists and computational biologists are spearheading our most innovative projects, which are focused on using modeling strategies such as deep learning and neural network applications to understand the molecular underpinnings of health and disease.
Renee was previously Senior Vice President of Research and Chief Scientific Officer at Selventa. In that role, she set the scientific direction for the company’s personalized medicine strategy and built a multidisciplinary team of biologists and computational biologists to characterize disease biology and identify target pathways. Before that Renee was Selventa’s Senior Director of Scientific Research Operations, responsible for designing and building the company’s biomarker discovery platform.

Renee holds a doctoral degree in molecular and cell biology from the University of California, Berkeley and a bachelor of science degree in bioengineering with a minor in mathematics from the University of Pennsylvania.