Licensing & Ventures Group

Ron Newbold

Chief Executive Officer, Empire Discovery Institute

Ron Newbold is the Chief Executive Officer of the Empire Discovery Institute in western New York, and an Entrepreneur in Residence for LVG in addition to his role as a board member. He is a business development executive and scientist with strong academic background managing transactions in small and large biopharmaceutical companies. He brings research and business experience with 2 Nobel laureates and collaboration with numerous world-class scientists. Newbold advances therapeutic capabilities while establishing creative partnerships with academia and the venture community. 

After receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Rochester and a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University, he joined Merck where he was ultimately responsible for Strategic Research Initiatives within External Scientific Affairs. Following 14 years with Merck, Ron led BD for three US-based biotech companies (Sentigen Biosciences, Celldex Therapeutics, and Auspex Pharmaceuticals) prior to joining Pfizer as Vice President of their Global Scouting Group. While at Pfizer, Ron managed a team of scientists in over 10 countries who evaluated and proposed partnerships of scientific value that broadened Pfizer’s early-stage pipeline.  He started and led the Pfizer Seed Fund (created through an evolution of the Pfizer Incubator) and served as Board Observer to Ab Initio, Aquinnah, Circle Pharmaceuticals, Lumena (acquired by Shire), Molecular Stethoscopes, Neoantigenics, Storm Therapeutics, and a Scientific Advisory Board member to NeoMED. Newbold joined the Empire Discovery Institute as Chief Business Officer in 2021 before being promoted to CEO in 2022.


  • Ph.D. (Synthetic Organic Chemistry), University of Rochester 
  • M.B.A., Columbia University
  • B.S. (Chemistry), Union College