Aspira Women’s Health Expands Senior Leadership Team with the Addition of Sandra Milligan, M.D., J.D. as President

 March 18, 2024 08:00 ET 

Dr. Milligan brings a wealth of experience across critical business functions and deep relationships with leaders throughout the healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors

Aspira also announces Dr. Todd Pappas, Vice President of Research & Development, to lead the Company’s product development team following the departure of Dr. Jody Berry

AUSTIN, Texas, March 18, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Aspira Women’s Health Inc. (“Aspira” or the “Company”) (Nasdaq: AWH), a bio-analytical based women’s health company focused on the development of gynecologic disease diagnostic tools, today announced that it has expanded its senior management team with the addition of Sandra Milligan, M.D., J.D. as President effective April 1, 2024. Dr. Milligan will report to Nicole Sandford, who will remain CEO. The Company has also promoted Dr. Todd Pappas, Vice President of Research & Development, to lead the Company’s product development team reporting directly to Dr. Milligan, following the departure of Dr. Jody Berry.

Dr. Milligan is an accomplished and proven leader with 25+ years of experience in the healthcare sector, with corporate experience that includes executive roles of increasing responsibility at innovative biopharmaceutical companies such as Amgen, Genentech, Merck, and Organon. She has demonstrated success in supporting pipeline and product development in both oncology and non-oncology disease areas, with recent emphasis in women’s health. Dr. Milligan is a known and respected leader in women’s health who drives cross-functional strategies to achieve corporate success.

As President, Dr. Milligan will be a key member of the executive leadership team with direct responsibility for the Research and Development, Operations, Information Technology, and Human Resources functions. Her immediate focus will be on accelerating the launch of the Company’s in-development products and the identification of potential innovation and commercialization partnerships.

“I am thrilled to welcome Sandy to our senior leadership team. She is a dynamic executive with the depth and breadth of experience and pharmaceutical and women's health industry relationships we need to take advantage of the opportunities before us,” said Nicole Sandford, Chief Executive Officer of Aspira. “With Sandy focused on the successful achievement of our innovation and operational goals, I will direct more of my attention on the acceleration of our growth initiatives, the expansion of our shareholder base, and the achievement of our long-term vision as a world-class AI-driven diagnostic company. She joins an already strong executive leadership team of experienced professionals. I also congratulate Todd who takes his rightful place at the helm of our R&D effort having been with Aspira for nearly a decade. We all thank Dr. Berry for his contributions to our progress and wish him well in his future endeavors.”

Dr. Milligan said, “I am excited to join a team dedicated to enhancing outcomes for the millions of women suffering from gynecologic disease. Advocating for improvements in women’s health has been important to me throughout my career, and I believe Aspira’s pipeline of advanced diagnostic tools for ovarian cancer and endometriosis address a real unmet need for healthcare providers seeking to elevate the standard of care for women facing these devastating diseases. I look forward to working with everyone – from the laboratory bench to the field sales team – to realize Aspira’s potential as a world-class diagnostic company.”

Dr. Milligan joins Aspira from her role as Executive Vice President, Research and Development at Organon where she founded the R&D organization and advanced near-and long-term strategies for pipeline growth and value creation. Prior to Organon, she served as Senior Vice President, Global Regulatory Affairs and Clinical Safety at Merck where she developed and implemented proactive, worldwide strategies across a broad spectrum of therapeutics to enable rapid registration and robust life-cycle enhancement. Prior to Merck, Dr. Milligan served in advancing leadership roles in Research and Development at both Genentech and Amgen. Dr. Milligan earned a Doctor of Medicine from the George Washington University School of Medicine as well as a Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center. After serving as a General Medical Officer in the US Army Medical Corps, she began her corporate career as an attorney in healthcare and corporate law prior to joining the pharmaceutical industry. She currently serves on the board of Gossamer Bio, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing, and commercializing therapeutics in respiratory disease. She formerly served as board chair of DIA, a global organization that mobilizes life sciences professionals across multiple disciplines involved in drug development to take a collaborative approach to solve common challenges.

Dr. Todd Pappas, Vice President of Research and Development, has assumed responsibilities for product development, replacing Dr. Jody Berry, who stepped down earlier this month. Dr. Pappas first joined Aspira in 2013 and has experience in R&D, commercial, and clinical operations at Aspira, Delphi, Inc., Reliant Immune Diagnostics, and Luminex Corporation. His work has been central to the successful development of the OvaSuite test portfolio. Dr. Pappas will continue to be responsible for all aspects of Aspira’s scientific and product development activities and its relationships with academic partners, including Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Dr. Pappas received his Ph.D. in Neuroscience from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, and an MS in Biology from California State University, Long Beach.

About Aspira Women’s Health Inc. 
Aspira Women’s Health Inc. is dedicated to the discovery, development, and commercialization of noninvasive, AI-powered tests to aid in the diagnosis of gynecologic diseases.    

OvaWatch® and Ova1Plus® are offered to clinicians as OvaSuiteSM. Together, they provide the only comprehensive portfolio of blood tests to aid in the detection of ovarian cancer for the 1.2+ million American women diagnosed with an adnexal mass each year. OvaWatch provides a negative predictive value of 99% and is used to assess ovarian cancer risk for women where initial clinical assessment indicates the mass is indeterminate or benign, and thus surgery may be premature or unnecessary. Ova1Plus is a reflex process of two FDA-cleared tests, Ova1® and Overa®, to assess the risk of ovarian malignancy in women planned for surgery.     

Our in-development test pipeline is designed to expand our ovarian cancer portfolio and addresses the tremendous need for noninvasive diagnostics for endometriosis, a debilitating disease that impacts millions of women worldwide. In ovarian cancer, our OvaMDxSM risk assessment is designed to combine microRNA and protein biomarkers with patient data to further enhance the sensitivity and specificity of our current tests. In endometriosis, EndoCheckSM is the first-ever noninvasive test designed to identify endometriomas, one of the most commonly occurring forms of endometriosis. The EndoMDxSM test is designed to combine microRNA and protein biomarkers with patient data to identify all endometriosis.   

Forward-Looking Statements   
This press release may contain forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the federal securities laws, including those relating to the timing and completion of any products in the pipeline development and other statement that are predictive in nature. Actual results could differ materially from those discussed due to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors. These forward-looking statements generally can be identified by the use of words such as “designed to,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “could,” “may,” “intend,” “will,” “continue,” “future,” other words of similar meaning and the use of future dates. Forward-looking statements in this press release and other factors are not guarantees of future performance and undue reliance should not be placed on them. Such forward-looking statements necessarily involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, which may cause actual performance and financial results in future periods to differ materially from any projections of future performance or result expressed or implied by such forward looking statements. These and additional risks and uncertainties are described more fully in the Company’s filings with the SEC, including those factors identified as “risk factors” in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. We are providing this information as of the date of this press release and do not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this document as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law. 

Investor Relations Contact: 
Torsten Hombeck, Ph.D. 
Chief Financial Officer 
Aspira Women’s Health 
[email protected]