ARCH Venture Partners Announces Promotions and New Appointment

CHICAGO, June 7, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- ARCH Venture Partners today announced several key promotions and the appointment of Olivia Zetter as Strategic Advisor and Venture Partner.

Key promotions include:

  • Ari Nowacek, M.D., Ph.D., to Partner
  • Sean Kendall to Partner, Europe
  • Corey Ritter to Principal
  • Nilay Thakar, Ph.D., to Principal

"We're delighted to have Ari, Sean, Corey and Nilay expand their roles on our investment team working with both life sciences and physical sciences companies," said ARCH Co-founder and Managing Director Keith Crandell. "Each of them started with ARCH at the Associate or Analyst level and have earned their way onto this team through solid and insightful work and by applying their broad skill sets. They have all been engaged in creating new companies and supporting the development of established portfolio firms. We're fortunate to have talent of this caliber in our firm and it is a privilege to work with them."

Dr. Ari Nowacek, Partner, joined as an Analyst in 2015. Dr. Nowacek is a co-founder of HiberCell, Walden Biosciences, and ROME Therapeutics, and was instrumental in the development of Ultivue and Arbor Biotechnologies. Dr. Nowacek is a physician-scientist by training with over 25 peer-reviewed publications and greater than 400 citations in the areas of oncology, neuroscience, virology, and antiretroviral therapeutic development. His research has led to seven issued patents for therapeutic and R&D applications.

Dr. Nowacek holds a B.S. in Biology and a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Indiana-Bloomington where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He also holds an M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska Medical Center and an M.B.A. from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He subsequently completed a medical residency in pathology and post-doctoral research at The University of Chicago and Massachusetts General Hospital. He serves as a board member for HiberCell and Walden Biosciences, and as a board observer for Arbor Biotechnologies, ROME Therapeutics, and Ultivue.

Sean Kendall, Partner (Europe), joined as an Analyst in 2015. He is a co-founder of Vizgen and Scale Biosciences, contributed to the formation of and funding of AIRNA, and led ARCH's investment in Lightcast Discovery.  Kendall drove business development efforts for other ARCH portfolio companies, including Twist Bioscience, Encodia, Singleron Biotechnologies, Oxford Nanoimaging, and Ultivue.

Kendall holds a B.S. and M.S. in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University, and an M.B.A. on the Dean's Honor List from The University of Chicago. He serves as a board member at AIRNA and Encodia, and as a board observer for Vizgen and others.

Corey Ritter, Principal, joined as an Associate in 2018. Ritter is a co-founder of Vizgen, Scale Biosciences, and others in development, and led investments in Slingshot Biosciences, Quantum Circuits, and Singleron Biotechnologies. He also supports business development efforts at DA32 Life Science Tech Acquisition Corp.

Ritter holds a B.A. in Astrophysics from Princeton University and completed his M.B.A. at The University of Chicago. He is a board member at Slingshot Biosciences and a board observer at Vizgen, Scale Biosciences, and Quantum Circuits.

Dr. Nilay Thakar, Principal, joined as an Associate in 2018. Dr. Thakar is a co-founder of Skylark Bio and serves as its Head of Business Development, and supported ARCH's investment efforts in Ally Therapeutics and One BioMed. He has authored eight peer-reviewed publications with greater than 250 citations in the areas of neuroscience, stem cell biology, intracellular signaling, and epigenetics.

Dr. Thakar holds a B.S. in Biochemistry with high-distinction honors and a Ph.D. in Cell Biology from the University of Queensland in Australia. He also completed his M.B.A. at The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He serves as a board member of AgBiome and as a board observer at Skylark Bio, Arbor Biotechnologies, and One BioMed. 

ARCH also announced that security expert Olivia Zetter was appointed Strategic Advisor and Venture Partner.

Zetter brings broad experience in national security and emerging technology issues that bridge public and private sectors. She most recently served as Head of Government Affairs and AI Strategy at National Resilience, a first-of-its-kind manufacturing and technology company dedicated to broadening access to complex medicines and protecting biopharmaceutical supply chains against disruption.

She previously held multiple positions in government, including Director for Research and Analysis at the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence, Foreign Affairs Officer at the Department of State's Office of the Coordinator for Cyber Issues, and Special Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the United States Department of Defense. 

Zetter holds a B.A. in International Relations from American University, Magna Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, and a Master of Public Policy from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.

"Olivia brings to ARCH a deep understanding of artificial intelligence and cyber security, both issues of critical importance to the development of the national and global biotechnology industries. Her experience and counsel will greatly enhance the ability of our portfolio companies to expand and operate optimally around the world," said ARCH Co-founder and Managing Director Robert Nelsen.

About ARCH Venture Partners

ARCH Venture Partners invests in advanced technology companies and is one of the largest early-stage technology venture firms in the United States. The firm is a recognized leader in commercializing technologies developed at academic institutions, corporate research groups and national laboratories. ARCH invests primarily in companies it co-founds with leading scientists and entrepreneurs, bringing innovations in life sciences and physical sciences to market.

For more information, visit


Morgan Warners

Finsbury Glover Hering

[email protected]

Cision View original content to download multimedia:

SOURCE ARCH Venture Partners