AUSTIN, Texas, Dec. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Vermillion, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRML), a multivariate diagnostics company focused on gynecologic cancers and women's health, announced James T. LaFrance has been appointed a member of its board and was elected chairman of the board on December 12, 2013. Pursuant to the equity financing transaction announced on May 9, 2013, LaFrance was nominated by Jack W. Schuler, Vermillion's largest private shareholder.
"We value the executive leadership expertise in the diagnostic industry Jim brings as our board chairman," commented Tom McLain, Vermillion's president and CEO. "His experience and proven ability to develop IVD strategies, launch diagnostic products and direct go-to-market strategies at GE Healthcare, Ventana and Bayer Diagnostics fit well with our operational focus to drive broader adoption of our OVA1 test."
LaFrance has almost 30 years of diagnostic industry experience. Most recently, he was head of digital pathology and acting CEO of Omnyx, LLC for GE Healthcare. Prior to that, he held a series of commercial, strategic marketing and business development leadership roles at Ventana Medical Systems (now Roche Tissue Diagnostics), including general manager of their North American and International commercial organizations. Prior to Ventana, LaFrance served in leadership roles in strategic marketing and business development at Bayer Diagnostics. He was a member of the board at Mitomics, Inc. from 2010 to 2011. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Connecticut and an MBA from the University of Notre Dame.
LaFrance succeeds Bruce A. Huebner who is retiring from the board. Dr. William Wallen has also retired from the board."The board of directors and management team at Vermillion thank Bruce and Bill for their contributions to the company's success," said McLain. "I want to acknowledge Bill Wallen for his technical guidance in support of OVA1 and the development of our next generation diagnostic tests. Bruce Huebner led a significant period of transition at the company as interim CEO and chairman of the board. His contributions of marketing and sales expertise have helped redefine Vermillion's commercial strategy. We wish them both well in their future endeavors." Following these changes the total number of board directors is six, all serving independently.