Phyllis Whiteley

Dr. Phyllis Whiteley, PhD., is a Venture Partner with Mohr Davidow Ventures and has been working with Mohr Davidow Ventures portfolio companies since 2008.  Dr. Whiteley has built a career founded on her passion for personalized medicine and transformative life science innovations.   She brings more than 25 years of experience across academics, biotech, and pharma in R&D, business, and portfolio management and has significant international experience, having established affiliates in Japan and Europe. Her work in pharmacology, immunology, and inflammation has resulted in multiple new chemical entities and publications.

Dr. Whiteley provided hands-on leadership in building and creating several companies in diagnostics, life science tools, and personalized medicine including Verinata Health, acquired by Ilumina (NASDAQ: ILMN).  Additionally, Dr. Whiteley co-founded RuiYi (previously named Anaphore) with 5AM Ventures.

Prior to her work in venture capital, Dr. Whiteley was an Officer and Senior Vice President, Business Development, Licensing, and Alliance Management at Perlegen Sciences, Inc.  Before joining Perlegen, she served as Vice President, Strategic Portfolio Management for F. Hoffman La Roche. During her ten years with Roche she held various positions in Business Development based in Basel, Switzerland and R&D leadership positions in the United States. Prior to her Roche tenure, Dr. Whiteley held a Senior Research Immunology role with Merck. 

Dr. Whiteley serves on multiple boards and holds several advisory roles including Balance Therapeutics, CardioDx, DVS Sciences, Sequenta, RainDance Technologies, The Personalized Medicine Coalition (emeritus), UCSF  T1 Catalyst  Program, and Springboard Enterprises.  She is also a Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI) mentor at Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, California.  Dr. Whitely received her BA in Chemistry and PhD in Pharmacology from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

Facts & Stats

  • Phyllis holds a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri.
  • More than 25 years experience in Academics, Biotech and Pharma (Merck and Roche) and has served as a leader in Therapeutic and Diagnostic Research and Development, Business Development, and Strategic Portfolio Management.
  • Founded and built multiple companies in the United States and abroad.