About Us Management
Howard J. Verrico, MD
Chairman of the Board, Founder
Dr. Verrico obtained his medical degree from the University of Toronto in 1985 and has been a member of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia since July 1986. Dr Verrico is currently a practicing emergency room physician. In addition, Dr. Verrico has extensive experience as a venture capitalist in the junior capital markets.
Chief Executive Officer
Neil Belenkie, a winner of Business in Vancouver Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40, brings his significant healthcare experience to Sirona Biochem. Neil’s award-winning career in life sciences includes leadership roles in sales, market research, marketing, and medical education. He is the founder of strategic management consulting company GrowthPoint Group, which provides businesses with sustainable solutions for long term growth. Neil’s entrepreneurial background is evident by the span and depth of his career and involvement in the community. His diverse leadership background includes founding the highly successful networking group “TRIPE” for Vancouver’s senior business leaders, being elected Chairman of the Board of Governors for non-profit organization Vancouver Biennale, instructor roles at Sauder School of Business and BCIT School of Business, Co-host of radio show, Grow Your Business, Councillor for the Britannia Community Council and a volunteer fireman. Previous to GrowthPoint, Neil co-founded RevGen and was a consultant at Odgers Berndston. His life sciences background includes leadership roles at Ortho Biotech and Hoffman LaRoche. Neil is an alumnus of Harvard Business School, Queen’s Executive School of Business, the University of Calgary and Mount Royal University.
Géraldine Deliencourt-Godefroy, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer
Dr. Géraldine Deliencourt-Godefroy is an award-winning synthetic chemist and the founder of French-based biotechnology company TFChem. Since the acquisition of TFChem by Sirona Biochem in March 2011, Dr. Deliencourt-Godefroy has assumed the role of Chief Scientific Officer. Her scientific research in carbohydrate chemistry has led to the discovery of new drug families and the development of drug candidates for diabetes and obesity, cosmetic ingredients and biological adjuvants. Previous to founding TFChem, Dr. Deliencourt-Godefroy was a scientific leader at INSA (National Institute of Applied Sciences) in Rouen, France, where she developed a new technology on stabilized carbohydrates. Previous roles also include a post-doctoral position at the University College London and doctoral research at the Research Institute of Fine Organic Chemistry in Rouen, France. Dr. Deliencourt-Godefroy received a PhD and Masters in Organic Chemistry as well as her business degree from the University of France. She is the author of several publications and patents and is also the recipient of the acclaimed Francinov Research and Innovation Medal, French Ministry of Research Award and the French Senate Award.
Christopher Hopton, CGA
Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Christopher Hopton is Sirona Biochem’s Chief Financial Officer. He brings 15 years of expertise in financial management and operations. His extensive experience covers areas of financial planning, accounting policy and business process improvement. As a business investment and finance consultant, Mr. Hopton has worked with several public and privately-held companies. Most recently, Mr. Hopton was the Chief Financial Officer of Central Resources Corp., a junior mineral exploration company. Formerly, he held the position of Division Controller at Canadian Airlines where he was responsible for an annual operating budget of $200M. Mr. Hopton was also involved in the restructuring of 360 Networks, a network communications company, which led to a buyout by Bell Canada. Mr. Hopton earned his Bachelor of Business Administration from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada and received his professional designation as a Certified General Accountant.