Our experienced leadership team is strategically aligned to provide significant value to each of our core business initiatives.

Richard Pascoe

Chief Executive Officer

Richard W. Pascoe has been a director and served as our Chief Executive Officer since March 2013 and has served as the Company’s Secretary since February 2015.

Mr. Pascoe joined the Company following the merger of Somaxon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. with Pernix Therapeutics Holdings, Inc. Mr. Pascoe was the Chief Executive Officer of Somaxon from August 2008 until joining the Company and was responsible for the FDA approval of Somaxon’s lead drug Silenor®. Prior to Somaxon, Mr. Pascoe was with ARIAD Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company where he was most recently Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.

Prior to joining ARIAD in 2005, Mr. Pascoe held a series of senior management roles at King Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (acquired by Pfizer Inc.), including Senior Vice President positions in both marketing and sales, as well as Vice President positions in both international sales and marketing and hospital sales. Prior to King, Mr. Pascoe was in the commercial groups at Medco Research, Inc. (acquired by King), COR Therapeutics, Inc. (acquired by Millennium Pharmaceuticals Inc., the Takeda Oncology Company), B. Braun Interventional and The BOC Group. Mr. Pascoe is a member of the board of directors of KemPharm, Inc., as well as a member of the company’s audit and compensation committees and its lead independent director.  He also serves as a member of the board of directors of Biocom and the Johnny Mac Soldiers Fund, a charity for military veterans.

Mr. Pascoe served as a Commissioned Officer with the U.S. Army 24th Infantry Division.  He is a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point where he received a B.S. degree in Leadership.

Brian Dorsey

Senior Vice President, Chief Development Officer

Brian T. Dorsey has been our Senior Vice President, Chief Development Officer since December 2014.

Mr. Dorsey has served in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries for over 20 years where he has provided high-level drug development, regulatory and QC/QA leadership of pharmaceutical candidates from early development to FDA approval. He has held various senior management roles with pharmaceutical companies, most recently at Pernix Therapeutics as Senior Vice President Pharmaceutical Development from April 2013 to September 2014. Mr. Dorsey held managerial positions of increasing responsibility at Somaxon Pharmaceuticals from 2005 to 2013, and before that at Baxter Bioscience and Pfizer Global Research and Development.

Mr. Dorsey received his Master of Science in Executive Leadership and his B.A. in Chemistry from the University of San Diego.

Neil Morton

Senior Vice President, Chief Business Officer

Mr. Morton brings to Apricus a successful track record in business development in specialty pharmaceuticals, most recently serving as the Executive Director of Business Development at Auxilium Pharmaceuticals Inc., where he successfully led their efforts to build a pipeline of men’s health products. Prior to Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, Mr. Morton served in business development and marketing roles at King Pharmaceuticals, attaining the position of Senior Director, Commercial Development.

Mr. Morton received his M.B.A. degree from the Babcock Graduate School of Management at Wake Forest University and his B.A. degree in biology from Bucknell University.

Mary Naggs

Vice President, General Counsel

Mary Naggs serves as our Vice President, General Counsel.

Since joining the Company in 2011, Ms. Naggs has held various roles with increasing responsibility.  She oversees all legal matters, including contracts, corporate governance, employment, financing transactions, compliance and intellectual property.

Ms. Naggs graduated summa cum laude from Thomas Jefferson School of Law and she received her bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and cell biology from Revelle College, University of California at San Diego.

Kelly Deck

Executive Director, Finance

Kelly Deck joined the finance team as Director of SEC Reporting in July 2013. Prior to Apricus, Ms. Deck held various roles in the accounting and finance departments for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, such as at Gen-Probe, Inc., which was acquired by Hologic, Inc. in August 2012, as well as La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company, Inc. and Cytori Therapeutics, Inc. Before transitioning to private industry, Ms. Deck began her career in  public accounting for a local firm in Atlanta, Georgia.

Ms. Deck holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and a Master of Science in Accounting, both from the University of Cincinnati. She is an active licensed CPA in California.