Six New Directors Chosen for Cord Blood Association

Issued: November 1, 2016

Umbilical Cord Blood and Ebola

The Cord Blood Association (CBA) has six new directors, four of them occupying newly created seats on an expanded Board of Directors.

The board voted in June to enlarge its own size from 13 to 17 directors, in part to accomplish wider international representation.  Two of the new directors are filling vacancies created by directors who recently have left the cord blood industry.

The newly elected Board members are:

Jaap Jan Boelens, MD, PhD, Pediatrician-Oncologist/Immunologist, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Deepak Chhabra, BSc, DBM, Chief Executive Officer, StemCyte India, Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India
Calvin Cole, President/Chief Executive Officer, Caricord, Aurora, Colorado, USA
Salmaan Dalvi, PhD., Director of Cord Blood and Stem Cell Programmes, Precious Cells, Uxbridge, United Kingdom
Joanie Y. Hare, MD, Maternal Fetal Medicine, Houston Perinatal Associates, Houston, Texas, USA
Todd Van Horn, General Manager, Cord Blood Registry from AMAG Pharmaceuticals, San Bruno, California, USA


International Representation

“When CBA was founded in 2014, the bylaws provided for a relatively small board that could be nimble and efficient,” said Joanne Kurtzberg, MD, president.  “But during their first year the officers and board members came to realize that wider international representation was needed for the global organization.” 

All CBA members were invited in July and August to recommend candidates for four new board seats.  Two additional seats later opened with the resignations of Geoffrey Crouse of Cord Blood Registry and Susan Armitage of M.D. Anderson Cord Blood Bank, both having left full-time employment in cord blood banking.

A nominating committee reviewed credentials of 29 recommended candidates, narrowed the field to 12 who were interviewed, and then nominated six. 

“The 29 recommended candidates were all highly credentialed and talented,” Dr. Kurtzberg said.  “Any combination of six could have been an outstanding addition to the board.  The nominating committee had a difficult time deciding on six to recommend for election.”

Tripartite Membership

The association’s revised bylaws require that the 17-member board have a “tripartite” membership.  Five seats are designated for representatives of public banks, five reserved for private or family banks, and seven are for the banking community at large.  The at-large directors may be research investigators, transplant clinicians, patients, parents, obstetricians, pediatricians, nurses, midwives, vendors, health policy experts or regulatory officials.

A lottery was held to determine the term lengths for the new directors, with terms expiring from 2019 to 2021.

“We are deeply indebted to Geoff Crouse and Sue Armitage, who devoted their skills and untold hours to help get CBA up and running this past year,” Dr. Kurtzberg said.  “In addition to being founding directors, Geoff was CBA’s first vice president and Sue its secretary.  Both served on the association’s Executive Committee and, before that, were members of the ad hoc committee that organized the association.  Their wise counsel and dedication will be greatly missed.”