Mr. Robert B. Chess (BS '78)
Rob Chess is a serial entrepreneur in the life sciences field. He is chairman and former CEO of Nektar Therapeutics (NASDAQ: NKTR), a health care biotechnology company, and lead director for Twist Bioscience (NASDAQ: TWST), which is a leading company in synthetic DNA tools. He has co-founded and served as President/CEO/Chairman of companies in dermatology (Penederm), renewable chemicals (OPX Biotechnology), and industrial genomics (Biota Technology). Rob started his career in the technology field and held management positions at Intel and Metaphor Computer Systems (later acquired by IBM). He served on the White House staff in the George H.W. Bush administration as a White House fellow and associate director of the White House Office of Economic and Domestic Policy.
In addition to his entrepreneurial endeavors, Rob is on the faculty of the Stanford Graduate School of Business, teaching courses in the MBA program on the health care industry and the opportunity created by aging demographics and increased longevity. He also was a visiting lecturer at Caltech in 2014 and 2015, where he co-taught a class on science-based entrepreneurship.
Rob received his BS in engineering with honors from Caltech and an MBA from Harvard.
Standing Committees: Executive; Conflict Review Subcommittee; Student Experience; Technology Transfer, chair