External Advisory Board Bios
Click on the IOA External Advisory Board member's name below to learn more about each individual and the expertise he/she brings to the IOA.
Adjunct Professor, General Restorative Dentistry
Don I. Trachtenberg, DDS, is an accomplished teacher, scientist, and advocate in the field of dental medicine, who received his undergraduate, dental, and graduate degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, earning dual certification in prosthodontics and periodontics.
Jonathan T. Wachtel
Mr. Wachtel is an attorney and real estate investor based in Brooklyn, New York. As President of Lucky Boy Development LLC since 2003, Mr. Wachtel has participated in and sponsored several multifamily residential projects in the greater New York City area. At the same time, Mr. Wachtel remains a practicing attorney and regularly assists clients in the development, acquisition, sale and financing of various types of property. Prior to entering the real estate business, Mr. Wachtel was in private practice as a real estate attorney at the firm of Kramer, Levin, Naftalis & Frankel LLP in New York.
Mr. Wachtel graduated in 1996 from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in International Relations. He spent his Junior year abroad at the London School of Economics where he completed the General Course with a concentration in International Relations. Mr. Wachtel went on to receive a JD in 1999 from Brooklyn Law School where he was elected an editor of the Brooklyn Law Review.
Mr. Wachtel currently resides in Brooklyn, New York with his wife, Catherine, and his daughter Annabelle. His studies in International Relations have served him well in his personal life, as his wife Catherine hails from Paris, France.
Like many, his life has been touched by Alzheimer’s disease, and he is committed to learning more and participating in whatever way possible in the battle against Alzheimer’s.
Sandeep Wadhwa, MD, MBA
Medicaid Program Director
Sandeep Wadhwa was appointed State Medicaid Director and Chief Medical Officer of the Department in March, 2008.
Dr. Wadhwa is an Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado Denver where he continues to sees patients and precept in the Seniors Clinic at the University of Colorado Hospital.
Before joining the Department, Dr. Wadhwa was the Vice President of Care Management Services at McKesson Health Solutions, a business unit of McKesson Corporation, a Fortune 20 company. He worked at McKesson for nine years and while there was responsible for the P/L of its care management services. In this role, he gained extensive experience with Medicaid and Medicare reform and modernization efforts having worked with 10 states on care management programs for fee-for-service clients.
Prior to joining McKesson, Dr. Wadhwa was active in healthcare policy. He worked for the White House and the U.S. Congress, and has testified before six Congressional committees. He also testified before the President's Advisory Commission on Quality and Consumer Protection in the Health Care Industry on developing innovative models of care for vulnerable populations.
Dr. Wadhwa received his undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University and attended medical school at the Cornell University Medical College, where he was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society. He is board certified in internal medicine and geriatrics and completed his residency training and fellowships at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Wadhwa also received an MBA from the Wharton School of Business and completed a general internal medicine fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania.
Chairman and CEO
Don Weissman, MD, formed Weissman Associates (WA) in 2004 and currently serves as the CEO. WA is a leading provider of strategic advisory services and innovative solutions to accelerate business and product development for LifeScience companies, projects and initiatives. As medical liaison and business development specialist, Don builds, manages and bonds vital partnerships, strategic alliances and C level relationships throughout the corporate, government and academic-institutional worlds. Don develops and maintains deep and enduring relationships with prominent KOLs (key opinion leaders) and SMEs (subject matter experts), the best AMCs (academic medical centers), biopharmaceutical and medical device companies, equity investors and corporate decision makers. Don combines strong medical science and business acumen with competitive intelligence, analysis and planning for market adoption and commercial optimization. Weissman Associates works closely with renowned physicians, executives, reimbursement plans and payers, utilizing evidence-based medicine and science building professional support and consensus. The mission is to improve the quality of life and healthcare outcomes by working synergistically with biopharmaceutical and medical device companies, leaders and innovators to develop and deliver the best treatments and services. Don is also connected to prominent medical societies and boards to produce and manage thought leader meetings, symposia, CME (Certified Medical Education) publications, mobile and e-communications for consumers and professionals with validation. A brief sampling of companies, payers and institutions we have worked with include Avanir, Neurographix, GSK, BMS, Lilly, Boston Scientific, Novartis, Aetna, United Health, Anthem, the University of Pennsylvania, UCLA, Cedars-Sinai, Stanford and Harvard. WA’s goals are collective and consistent with client’s values and include the optimization and realization of patient benefits, with clinical well being, financial and operational success. WA is proactive and diligent in helping companies expedite development and accelerate market share through awareness, access and deliverables: communications and education, better therapeutics and services, enhanced clinical outcomes and stakeholder value.
Prior to WA, Don served as Executive Vice President (EVP) and Director of Strategic Accounts at MedSn, a LifeScience-Healthcare communications and multi-media medical education company. Strategic accounts developed and brought on board during Don's tenure include twelve of the top twenty biopharmaceutical companies and seven of the top ten Medical Device companies. Don was instrumental in the development of award-winning CME programs in multiple therapeutic areas across multiple platforms including internet, electronic, mobile, print, national and international symposia and meetings.
Prior to WA and MedSn, Don served as Co-Founder and Managing Director of Vitality Pharmaceuticals (VP). Vitality Pharmaceuticals sold proprietary, condition specific, OTC supplements targeting the physician and consumer markets. Don, along with leading research and clinical investigators, developed and is patent holder of CardioLife™, designed to lower the incidence of primary and secondary heart attacks. VP was established with a world-renowned, university-based medical advisory board. Don negotiated licensing, sale and marketing agreements with GSK, JnJ, Bayer and hospital sales organizations, Physicians Sales and Services, (PSS), Cardinal-McKesson HBOC and others.
In 2008, Don was asked to form and lead a new company in response to and as a means to help stem the growing tide of juvenile and adult obesity. Natural Vitality International (NVI) was then formed, as an organic food company, specializing in delicious snack food bars, made from top quality natural and organic ingredients with soluble plant fiber which also lowers the bad cholesterol or Ldls. The proprietary formulations are thus very healthy, satiating, low caloric, and low glycemic. NV is currently formulating condition-specific bars for men and woman, memory, heart, bone, joint & cartilage, immunity and more.
In preparation for his role as a LifeScience and Healthcare advisor and business development specialist, Don spent several years with Mandalay Capital, a multi-national LifeScience advisory and investment firm with offices in New York, Los Angeles, Riyadh, and Tel Aviv. Mandalay focused on the commercialization of Intellectual Property and technology transfer for the development of early stage biopharmaceuticals, medical devices, healthcare informatics, initiatives, clinical facilities and hospitals.
Don began his career as a surgeon and emergency room physician, becoming board eligible in emergency medicine and a fellow of the American Academy of Head and Neck Medicine and Surgery. Recognizing the need for outpatient medical and surgical centers, Don established a number of facilities in California, New York, and Florida. As founder of Beverly Medical and Surgical Centers (BMSC) serving a large and diverse socioeconomic population in different facilities for primary care and outpatient elective surgery, Don developed archetype marketing studies and wrote informed consent papers and procedures for the enhanced productivity of clinics and physician practices. While at BMSC Don also negotiated institutional payer and provider contracts with government agencies including Champus, Medicare and Medicaid, Aetna, United Health, Anthem and HMOs including the Kaiser system. Don completed his formal medical training and Chief Residency at Cleveland Clinic-Case Western Reserve University following his residency at Stanford University Medical Center, internship at Cedars-Sinai and medical school while pursuing MBA studies at New York University. Don received his Bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biology at C.W. Post College, Long Island University.
In addition to the IOA, where Don has proudly and actively served since 2004, Don provides services for and works with the University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business, Bio-Business Initiatives, the National Science Foundation, and National Institutes of Health as a commercial analyst for research and development programs and as a panelist for SBIR grants. He is also an active member of Stanford University Medical Alumni Association, the American Association of Pharmaceutical Physicians, the New York Academy of Science, The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and the National Alzheimer’s Forum, among others.