Who we are
Directors & Advisors
Founder & Chairman,
Chief Executive Officer, Metabiota
Nathan Wolfe is the founder and chairman of Global Viral and is active in managing GV both operationally and scientifically. Nathan is the Lorry I. Lokey Visiting Professor in Human Biology at Stanford University and has spent his life studying deadly viruses to detect worldwide disease pandemics before they kill millions. He is also the Founder and CEO of Metabiota, a for-profit company specializing in microbiological research, products and services.
Nathan's endeavors coordinate over 100 scientists and staff globally by spotting viruses as soon as they surface by collecting and cataloguing blood samples, surveying wild animals, scanning urban blood banks and documenting the transfer and distribution on disease. Data gleaned from a dozen field sites in Cameroon, China, Malaysia and other countries have led to the discovery of a number of previously unknown infectious agents, notably simian foamy and t-lymphotropic viruses that emerged into humans from primate reservoirs.
TIME magazine included him in the “2011 Time 100” as one of the one hundred most influential people in the world; Rolling Stone named him one of the “100 Agents of Change” in 2009; and Popular Science recognized him as one of their “Brilliant 10” in 2006. He has been honored with a Fulbright fellowship and the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award. He is a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and a National Geographic Emerging Explorer. Times Books published his first book, THE VIRAL STORM: The Dawn of a New Pandemic Age on October 11, 2011, to rave reviews. He has over 80 scientific publications and his work has been published in or covered by Nature, Science, The New York Times, The Economist, NPR, The New Yorker and Forbes among others. He has received support totaling over $30m in grants and contracts from Google.org, the Skoll Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the US Department of Defense and others.
Jeremy Alberga has served at GV’s Deputy Director, where he oversaw the organization’s day-to-day operations from 2009 - 2015. He has over 10 years of managing international development projects, including 3 years living in Cameroon and 1.5 years in Botswana, where he was the Deputy Country Director for ITECH Botswana, dedicated to building clinical capacity for the care and treatment of people living with HIV/AIDS. Prior to working in international development, Mr. Alberga spent five years advising state governments on health policy reforms concerning insurance markets and programs aimed at reducing the uninsured. Mr. Alberga holds an MA from George Washington University and a BA from McGill University.
Chief Operating Officer
UCSF Global Health Group
Senior Vice President,
The Pew Charitable Trusts.
Sally O’Brien leads Pew’s development efforts with donors and partner organizations.
O’Brien joined Pew in 2010 after 18 years at The Johns Hopkins University, most recently as associate dean for development and external affairs at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School. Before that, she was director of development at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health where she played a pivotal role in the successful conclusion of the school’s $500 million capital campaign. She planned the school’s 75th anniversary celebrations and was instrumental in the growth of the school’s endowment from less than $40 million in 1990 to $218 million by 2007. Her leadership resulted in the establishment of a number of innovative donor relationships that included the funding of the Procter & Gamble Fellows Program, the DeBeers Scholars program and the establishment of the Sommer Scholars to develop the next generation of public health leaders.
Prior to joining Johns Hopkins, O’Brien was a member of the British Diplomatic Service and served in London, Brussels and Washington. She advised on government policy and coordinated regular meetings of European Community foreign ministers and ambassadors. During her tenure in the Washington embassy, she was appointed a member of the Royal Victorian Order by HM The Queen for services to the Royal Family.
O’Brien grew up in England and first came to the United States as a Robert T. Jones Scholar at Emory University before moving permanently to the United States in 1987. She earned her combined undergraduate/graduate degree in art history at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.
She serves on the boards of Global Viral, a health organization, and Friends of Christ’s Hospital. She is a former board member of Advocates for Children and Youth and the Maryland Film Festival.
Sr. Attending Physician & Assoc. Professor of Clinical Investigation,
The Rockefeller University.
Dr. Schlesinger leads the clinical development of vaccines that target HIV and immunotherapies to treat other conditions, including cancer. Formally a member of the Steinman laboratory and now working with Michel C. Nussenzweig and Jeffrey V. Ravetch, she is interested in the clinical manipulation of the immune system’s dendritic cells to elicit immunity to diseases ranging from HIV to cancer. Although much research has been conducted in mice, the causes of human disease can differ considerably. Dr. Schlesinger is directing phase I clinical studies that employ the methods of immunology and dendritic cell biology, in which patients set the standards needed to understand diseases and treatments.
Dr. Schlesinger has been involved in the clinical trials of eight HIV vaccines and vaccine adjuvants. She is now conducting the first HIV vaccine trial based on dendritic cells, which were discovered at Rockefeller in 1973 by Ralph Steinman and his mentor, Zanvil Cohn.
In the steady state, dendritic cells capture antigens and travel to immune or lymphoid tissues, where they present to T cells, stimulating a robust immune response. But dendritic cells also play a seemingly opposite role, immune tolerance, which silences dangerous immune cells and prevents them from attacking the body’s own tissues. Working with Dr. Steinman, Dr. Schlesinger has used dendritic cells to study and design treatments that can harness the immune system, either to enhance or silence its functions, in an antigen- or disease-specific manner.
In addition to leading clinical trials, Dr. Schlesinger chairs the research education and training committee of the Center for Clinical and Translational Science at The Rockefeller University Hospital. She is also codirector of the Clinical Scholars program and the Certificate in Clinical and Translational Sciences program and is a member of The Rockefeller University Institutional Review Board.
Erez Kalir is the founder and portfolio manager of Ironbark Investments, a hedge fund that focuses on event-driven investment opportunities across asset classes globally.Ironbark seeks to identify industries, geographies, and companies undergoing structural transformation, where the change has been neglected or misunderstood by the market. Having identified these opportunities, Ironbark performs detailed, fundamental analysts across the capital structure to find securities that present a favorably asymmetric risk - reward and a catalyst to help unlock value. Ironbark's portfolio uses minimal or no leverage, and generally keeps a sizeable pool of its liquidity in cash to position the fund to exploit the forced selling of other market participants. The Ironbark portfolio seeks to be resilient across diverse economic environments and outcomes. Erez holds degrees from Stanford, Oxford, and Yale Universities.
Founder & Portfolio Manager, Ironbark
Don Oppenheim spent his career managing the finances and strategies of law firms, both as a consultant and as an Executive Director. Many of the firms he worked for had either public agency or non-profit clientele.
Don earned an MBA from the University of Michigan in 1980 and prior to that a BS from UC Berkeley, 1978. The focus of his early career was the environment, working for Sierra Club Books, where he focused on a distribution agreement with Random House, and also the formation of an environmental book club banding together the memberships of many eco-focused non-profit organizations. Mr. Oppenheim lives in Berkeley , California and runs a part-time consultancy during early retirement. He also volunteers with a few select organizations, including Global Viral, focusing primarily on business issues and challenges.
Central Afirca Regional Director
Mr. Tamoufe, a biotechnology engineer, was among the first project staff in Cameroon to organize resources to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Mr Tamoufe has been Deputy Director for the Johns Hopkins Central Africa Program from 2000-2007, and prior to that had more than 10 years experience working with Family Health International of North Carolina and coordinating a range of studies investigating microbicide effectiveness (phase III) in high-risk women under FDA control, family planning delivery methods, and HIV prevention programs within general population, high-risk women, uniformed services, and youth. Since January 2008 Mr Tamoufe is the Regional Director for Global Viral Forcasting Initiative for Central Africa (GVFI).
Mr Tamoufe is certified as Clinical Research Coordinator by Barnett International, certified for Good Clinical Practice by SACRA South Africa. From 2003-2006 Mr Tamoufe was nominated by the President of Johns Hopkins University at the position of Associate at the Department of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA. Since 2007 up to date Mr Tamoufe has been recruited at the position of Assistant Researcher at the Department of Epidemiology at the University of California at Los Angeles in USA with position located in Cameroon. He also has a Masters Degree in Public Health from the Université Henri Poincaré, Nacy 1, France.
Mr Tamoufe is an HIV prevention specialist. Since 2002 he has been coordinating military HIV prevention projects in central Africa funded by the US DoD Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention Program through Johns Hopkins Central Africa Program, and is widely recognized throughout Central Africa for his innovative work with uniformed services.
Matthew LeBreton has worked at the intersection of the fields of health, environment, conservation and wildlife ecology for the past 25 years. His work has involved engagement and inclusion of government and community in research, program development and implementation. He has coauthored around 80 scientific papers related to health and environment and a book on the Reptiles of Cameroon in collaboration with the National Museum of Natural History in Paris. In central Africa, Matthew has worked on programs funded by USAID, Google Foundation, National Science Foundation, PEPFAR, Johns Hopkins University, the World Bank, the Global Emerging Infections Surveillance network and others. Matthew is the founder and director of Mosaic which, based in Cameroon, provides technical advice, programmatic assistance and project implementation support to government, NGOs and companies throughout the region.
Col. Bagamboua Romain
Colonel Dr. Romain BAGAMBOULA MPASSI has been in charge of the management of health projects at the Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Congo (RoC) for more than a decade. He has headed Scientific and Technical Research at the Central Directorate of the Armies’ Health Service and coordinates, and as such, the projects carried out in partnership with the United Nations system, the Department of Defense of the United States of America (Life Initiative/ Johns Hopkins University, DHAPP etc.) and Global Viral. As the Global Viral Country representative for RoC Since 2014, he coordinates the surveillance and prevention of zoonoses and emerging diseases (PREDICT) project in the country. He is a member of the National Coordinating Committee of the Global Fund for TB, malaria and HIV / AIDS; Head of New Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in the Executive Office of the Central and West Africa Military Network for the fight against AIDS (REMAFOC / AIDS); Country Representative of the Central African Military Health Alliance (RESSMAC) and Secretary General of the Congolese Society for Military Medicine (SCMM). Colonel Dr. Romain BAGAMBOULA MPASSI was President of the Scientific Committee of the 9th Pan African Congress of the International Committee of Military Medicine (ICMM) in 2010-2012.
Colonel Dr. Romain holds an MD and is a graduate of tropical and parasitic Medicine at the University Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI - France). He is also a graduate in Sexual Reproductive Health and HIV / AIDS of the ALFRED FOURNIER Institute (Paris - France) and holds a Certificate of Special Studies [Certificate d’Etudes Spéciales) ,(CES)] of the Inter-State Center for Higher Public Health Education in Central Africa (CIESPAC).
General ADRINKAYE Allao Dounia is the Coordinator of the sectorial committee for the fight against HIV/AIDS at the Ministry of National Defense in Chad.
For 20 years, he has been supervising the Organization of the response to HIV/AIDS/STIs in the Security and armed forces in Chad. He was a member of the Global Fund against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as representatives of the Government. He is the Army HIV Focal point and a member of the West and Central Africa military network for the fight against HIV/AIDS (REMAFOC/SIDA) and the military network for combating emerging and re-emerging Infections in Central Africa, Sao Tome and Principe.
Gen. Adrinkaye was the Deputy Director of the Health Service and Social Action of the security and Armed Forces in Chad for 07 years and the Director for 19 years. He is a graduate of the Faculty of medicine and the school of officers’ corps off Thessaloniki, Greece and holder of a certificate in applied epidemiology for senior leadership of the health and the Faculty of medicine, pharmacy and Stomatology in Bamako Mali. He also holds a University diploma in public health and Health Promotion Option in developing countries from the Henri Poincaré Faculty of medicine in Nancy France, and a University diploma of the fight against malaria in the Faculty of the Mediterranean in Marseilles in France