Biotech entrepreneur, author, and expert patient
Michael Becker was first diagnosed with Stage IV oropharyngeal (head and neck) cancer caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) in December 2015. After undergoing aggressive chemoradiation treatment, he was cancer-free for six months. Then, in December 2016, doctors discovered distant metastasis in both of his lungs. Recurrence of this disease is often lethal—no effective treatment exists.
Mr. Becker is a former C-level industry executive with over twenty-five years of life sciences experience, including serving as CEO for two public biotechnology companies working in the treatment and diagnosis of cancer. During his tenure at New Jersey-based Cytogen Corporation, Mr. Becker raised more than $130 million in new capital through both public offerings and private placements. He also in-licensed and commercially launched Caphosol©, a topical, oral agent and prescription medical device commercialized for the treatment of oral mucositis and xerostomia.
He is the founder and president of MDB Communications LLC, where he serves as an inspirational keynote speaker, freelance writer, and consultant to the healthcare industry, businesses, and nonprofits. In May 2018, Mr. Becker published the second edition of A Walk with Purpose and actively blogs about his experience (mdbcancerjourney.com) to help educate others about the realities of living with a terminal disease.
Mr. Becker plays an active leadership role as an advocate for the biotechnology industry. He is past Chairman and member of the board of trustees with BioNJ, which is New Jersey’s trade association for biotechnology companies. Widely quoted by the press, Mr. Becker has authored original articles on medical, financial, communications, marketing, and regulatory topics relevant to the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and medical device industries. He placed as a biotechnology/life sciences finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in both 2004 and 2005 and was listed in BusinessWeek’s “CEO’s 40 and Under” article in December 2006.
Michael Becker completed coursework in Political Science at DePaul University and received an Associate of Science Degree from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. He is also an accomplished photographer and published a large format, high-quality, coffee table photography book titled Strength, Confidence, & Beauty: A Collection of Female Portraits.