Dr. Clay Siegall co-founded Seattle Genetics in 1998, and in 2002, he became the chief executive officer. Prior to this he held research positions with Bristol- Myers Pharmaceutical Research Institute and the National Cancer Institute. He attended George Washington University where he received a Ph.D in Genetics. He has a Bachelor of Science in Zoology from the University of Maryland.
Under Dr. Siegall’s leadership, Seattle Genetics has become a leader in developing targeted cancer therapies, which includes antibody-drug conjugates (ADC’s). When Dr. Siegall co-founded Seattle Genetics, the main cancer treatments of the day consisted of chemotherapies that would kill healthy cells, as well as cancerous cells. In 2011 the FDA approved the ADC product, ADCETRIS, which is now used in over 65 countries. Improving the lives of those stricken with cancer is a priority of Dr. Siegall’s work. In 2012 he received the Pacific Northwest Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year, and in 2013 he was awarded the Alumnus of the Year for Computer, Math, and Natural Sciences from the University of Maryland.
When Dr. Siegall was 24 he watched his father pass away from cancer and it contributed to his desire to help cancer patients with targeted drug treatments. His time with Bristol-Myers gave him the business experience he needed to run Seattle Genetics. He believes that seeking input from other people in he industry is an important factor in the development of new oncology drugs. He enjoys being his own boss at Seattle Genetics, because being at Bristol-Myers didn’t give him the autonomy and latitude that he preferred. Seattle Genetics earn their money from the proprietary drugs they sell, developing new processes and technologies, and production partnerships. Their sales staff have biotech expertise and are very knowledgeable about the business. Dr. Clay Siegall believes that success is more about how hard you work, not how smart you are or what your educational background is.