Kelly Close, Founder, The diaTribe Foundation
Kelly L. Close is the founder and Chair of the Board of The diaTribe Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of people living with diabetes and prediabetes, and advocating for action. Since 2006, she has been the Editor-in-Chief of diaTribe, our free website focused on making people with diabetes healthier and happier and advocating for action. Since 2002, she has also run Close Concerns, a healthcare information firm exclusively focused on diabetes and obesity. Each year Kelly and her colleagues attend over 50 scientific, regulatory, and economic conferences around the world, focused on diabetes and obesity; they read the key medical literature in the field and write regularly about 50-plus private and public companies and nonprofit organizations. Kelly's passion for diabetes comes from her extensive professional work as well as her personal experience as a type 1 patient for nearly 30 years.
Prior to starting Close Concerns, Kelly was an analyst in the financial sector, writing about medical technology companies, and she also worked at McKinsey & Company, where a majority of her work was focused on healthcare. Kelly is recognized as an expert on diabetes and obesity markets, and she is a frequent speaker on the public health implications of diabetes and obesity. A longtime diabetes patient advocate, Kelly was previously on the Board of Directors of the Diabetes Hands Foundation, the Behavioral Diabetes Institute, and the Executive Board of the San Francisco Bay Area JDRF. Kelly is a graduate of Amherst College and Harvard Business School. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and three children.
Jeff Halpern brings to The diaTribe Foundation a combination of strategic business skills, consumer marketing acumen and experience in the diabetes device industry. He is currently Senior Director of Brand, Strategy and Communications for Abbott Diabetes Care where he is responsible for brand strategy, financial planning, marketing plan development, direct to consumer marketing, strategic partnerships, creative services, and new product commercialization for the US market. Prior to joining Abbott, Jeff spent a combined 9 years at The Clorox Company in brand management for businesses including Glad Food Storage and Clorox Cleaning Products. Since 1986, Jeff has held a variety of marketing and finance positions with major consulting, technology and consumer packaged goods companies including TheraSense, Wattage Monitor, Archway-Mother’s Cookie Companies, Swinglab LLC, Pacific Bell Mobile Services (aka AT&T Wireless), The Haagen-Dazs Company, and Bain & Company. Jeff received his A.B. from Brown University and his M.B.A. from Stanford University Graduate School of Business. He has Type 1 diabetes.
Dr. Orville Kolterman
Dr. Kolterman was most recently Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer of Amylin, Pharmaceuticals and since 1989 has been Adjunct Professor of Medicine at UC San Diego. He previously served as Senior Vice President, Research and Development from June 2008 to June 2010. He served as Senior Vice President, Development from March 2008 to May 2008. He also served as Senior Vice President, Clinical and Regulatory Affairs from August 2005 to March 2008, Senior Vice President, Clinical Affairs from February 1997 to August 2005, Vice President, Medical Affairs from 1993 to 1997, and Director, Medical Affairs from 1992 to 1993. From 1983 to 1992, he was Program Director of the General Clinical Research Center and Medical Director of the Diabetes Center at the University of California, San Diego Medical Center. He was a member of the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial Study Group and presently serves as a member of the Epidemiology of Diabetes Intervention and Complications Study. He is also a past-president of the California Affiliate of the American Diabetes Association. Dr. Kolterman received his M.D. from Stanford University School of Medicine.
Ruth Owades is an entrepreneur, CEO and corporate director, currently serving as the President of Owades Enterprises, LLC. The companies she founded are subjects of Harvard Business School case studies and are taught around the world. Gardener’s Eden pioneered direct sales of upscale garden tools, accessories and furniture. Three years after founding the company, she sold it to Williams-Sonoma. With Calyx & Corolla, the first fresh flower catalog and website, Ms. Owades reinvented the floral distribution system by eliminating middlemen and shipping flowers directly from growers to consumers.
Ms. Owades serves on the boards of Newsy, Northern Trust Corporation Western Region, and the diaTribe Foundation, and has been on the boards of Armstrong World Industries, Deckers Outdoor Corporation, the J. Jill Group, and Providian Financial Corporation. She has also served on the Board of Dean’s Advisors for Harvard Business School and the Scripps College Board of Trustees.
Business Week hailed Ms. Owades as a “Best Entrepreneur.” She was awarded the Alumni Achievement Award from Harvard Business School, the Distinguished Alumni Award from Scripps College, and the Lifetime Achievement Medal from the Fulbright Association. A frequent lecturer on entrepreneurship, branding, strategic alliances and corporate governance, Ms. Owades has been a guest speaker at Google, IBM, Harvard Business School, Stanford Graduate School of Business, Oxford University and California Institute of Technology. She was the 2013 commencement speaker at Scripps College.