Management Team



R. Nolan Townsend

R. Nolan Townsend joins LEXEO Therapeutics as Chief Executive Officer from prior roles as President, Pfizer Rare Disease for the North America and International regions respectively.  He has over a decade of experience with Pfizer first joining the company in Corporate Finance and in roles of increasing responsibility across Corporate Finance, Corporate Strategy, Operations, Marketing and General Management in Pfizer’s New York HQ, Asia, Africa/Middle East and Europe.  Prior to Pfizer, he worked in the healthcare investment banking group at Lehman Brothers, advising healthcare companies on strategic financing transactions and mergers and acquisitions.

Townsend received his Masters in Business Administration from the Harvard Business School and his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania



Neil Hackett

Neil Hackett PhD, Acting Chief Scientific Officer is an expert on pre-clinical and translational programs for gene therapies.   Prior to his appointment he was an independent consultant working with research groups and foundations to navigate stem cell and gene therapy projects through pre-IND to IND.  This included project management, advising on proof-of-concept and  toxicology studies, vector manufacturing and regulatory writing.  His training includes 4 years as post-doctoral fellow at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and professorial appointments at Vanderbilt University and Weill-Cornell Medical College.  Previous assignments include participating in design, qualification and management of a successful GMP facility for viral vector manufacturing and as coinvestigator in multiple gene therapy clinical trials for cardiac, pulmonary and neurological indications.  

Director of Operations

Sharon Driscoll

Sharon Driscoll is Director of Operations responsible for managing company operational matters across functional areas.  She has over ten years of experience in medical research experience (focused primarily on neurobiology and genetics) with extensive experience in project management and leadership roles, including two years conducting research at a Department of Defense Medical research laboratory.  Sharon has received a degree in Human Biology from Cornell University.


Founder & Scientific Adviser

Dr. Ronald Crystal

Ronald Crystal is a physician-scientist and pioneer in vivo gene therapy. He is a Professor and Chairman, Department of Genetic Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College, previously Chief, Pulmonary Branch, NHLBI. He also directs the Weill Cornell Belfer Gene Therapy Core facility, with 45 faculty/staff, including viral vector, pre-clinical translation, toxicology, regulatory and GMP manufacturing expertise.

Dr. Crystal has 14 approved gene therapy investigational new drug applications with experience in CNS, cardiac, pulmonary and liver human gene therapy.  

Dr. Crystal is the founder/co-founder of several gene therapy companies including GenVec, Adverum and XyloCor

Dr. Crystal developed the FDA approved augmentation therapy used worldwide to treat >6000 patients with alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency. He has 30+ year experience with adenovirus and adeno-associated virus vectors, from basic vector design to clinical studies.

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(212) 547-9879