Ensysce Biosciences




D. Lynn Kirkpatrick, Phd,

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Kirkpatrick has focused her entire career on drug discovery and development. Former Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry in Canada, she has co-founded two start up companies and successfully brought three novel cancer drug candidates into human clinical trails. Following the acquisition of her first company, by Biomira Inc., (Oncothyreon) in 2006, Dr. Kirkpatrick took the role as the Chief Scientific Officer of the merged company. She became President and CEO of Ensysce Biosciences Inc. in January 2009. Dr. Kirkpatrick received her PhD from the University of Saskatchewan and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Yale University School of Medicine. She has published extensively in the area of targeted drug discovery and development and holds numerous patents for novel targeted  drugs and delivery technology.


Chief Medical Officer

Dr. William K. Schmidt,  Head, NorthStar Consulting, is the Parliamentarian and a Past-President of the Eastern Pain Association, the largest regional affiliate of the American Pain Society. He has over 25 years of pharmaceutical industry experience with a special emphasis on the discovery and development of novel analgesic and narcotic antagonist drugs. He was previously VP of Clinical Development for CrystalGenomics (Seoul, South Korea) and its U.S. subsidiary, CG Pharmaceuticals (Emeryville, CA); Senior VP of Development at Limerick BioPharma in South San Francisco, CA; VP, Clinical Research, for Renovis, Inc., in South San Francisco, CA; and VP, Scientific Affairs and Acting VP, Clinical R&D, at Adolor Corporation in Exton, PA. At Adolor, Dr. Schmidt was a key member of the team leading to the clinical development, NDA filing, and FDA approval of Entereg® (alvimopan), a peripherally-acting opioid antagonist.  Currently as head of NorthStar Consulting, Dr. Schmidt serves as an expert on pain medicine pharmaceutical development with pharmaceutical and biotech companies throughout North America, Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Australia.  Dr. Schmidt received a BA from the University of California Berkeley and his PhD University of California-San Francisco.

Richard Wright, MSE, MBA

Chief Business Officer

Richard Wright has held positions in investment banking, venture capital, and intellectual property advisory. He is a partner at Ren Capital Partners, a Beijing based global healthcare fund. Richard has been a strategic advisor to Bangkok Dusit Medical Services, the largest healthcare conglomerate in southeast Asia, focusing on pharmaceutical development and market entry strategies. Richard was Managing Director of Newstock Capital an intellectual property investment bank advising investment firms, hedge funds, and multi-national banks on patent financing, investing, and divestitures in the healthcare space. Prior to Newstock, Richard managed a worldwide intellectual property healthcare investment fund for General Electric. In addition he co-founded an immunology biotech company which was later sold to a private equity concern, and was involved with Guardian Technology Partners, a pharmaceutical and chemical patent advisory firm in Philadelphia that was sold to investment bank Boenning & Scattergood. Richard has an MSE in biotechnology/technology management from the University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering & Applied Sciences and the Wharton School of Business (EMTM), and a MBA from the London School of Economics (TRIUM). 

Kurt Schmidt, MBA

Chief Financial Officer

Kurt Schmidt has 30+ years experience in entrepreneurial environments with a focus on start-up and early stage operations. He has been responsible for multiple facets of leadership including strategy, finance, operations and business expansion, by collaborating with Boards and CEO’s. With professional experience in diverse industries including Biotech, Technology and FMCG, Mr. Schmidt has lived and worked in 3 countries (USA, Netherlands, France) and conducted business on 6 continents, providing him an ability to understand and operate in various cultures. He has a BSBA in Business Administration from Franklin University and an MBA from Pepperdine University, The George L Graziadio School of Business and Management.

K. Geoff Birkett

Chief Commercial Officer

Geoff has over 25 years experience in Pharmaceuticals with focus on CNS/ Oncology/ Pain/ Addiction. This includes18 years with AstraZeneca – SVP of Global Development and Marketing - CNS/ Oncology products. He has launched 5 major market leading brands including Nicorette/ Prozac/ Seroquel/ Zomig. Mr. Birkett served as CCO/ President with multiple Biotechs in in Pain/ Addiction space. Recently he consulted with several Pharmaceutical Companies on development strategy and marketing. Geoff studied Business at INSEAD, Paris.