Dr. Lily Lee


“Almata is inspired by the international Declaration of Alma Ata which affirmed health as a fundamental human right, emphasized community-based, education and prevention focused primary care, and called for collaboration between the public and private sectors. Almata presents an excellent opportunity to bring together my passions for social development, and my experience in leading multi-functional teams in the health care sector. I firmly believe that the innovative application of technology will make a meaningful impact in public health care around the world. I am fortunate to be part of this journey.” - Lily

Lily was a senior executive with close to thirty years of international experience in the pharmaceutical industry in the United States, Europe, and Asia Pacific. Lily had worked with large multi-national companies (Janssen, Johnson & Johnson, and Ciba Geigy [now Novartis]), and with two biotech companies (Liposome, Imclone). Lily was responsible for drug development and approvals in the USA, Europe and Asia. Over the years, Lily expanded her responsibility to lead all R&D functions in the drug development process and had led teams to place multiple life saving cancer drugs in clinics around the world. In her latest position in the industry, Lily was Senior Vice President and Head of Asia Pharmaceutical R&D for Johnson & Johnson, responsible for initiating and leading all R&D functions in Asia Pacific over a seven year period until 2012.

Concurrently, since 1990, Lily has been an active Board member, President and Chairperson of a non-profit organization, The Zigen Fund. Zigen (滋根), which in Chinese means “to nurture the roots”, is a US registered non-profit organization founded in 1988, and was among the first few fully registered NGOs in China in 1995. Together with a team of field staffs in China, Zigen has sustained and expanded active programs in ten provinces in China, with focus on basic education, women’s empowerment, and basic health care in the remote rural areas of China.

Since 2013, Lily is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Pennsylvania with primary interest in fostering a holistic understanding of the complexity of global challenges, and exploring win-win solutions through the examination of the interface among the government, business and non-profit sectors.

Lily loves nature and enjoys venturing on paths less traveled. Lily is also an amateur photographer, painter, and backyard organic farmer.


Ph.D. in Demography – University of California, Berkeley
M.A. in Biostatistics (School of Public Health) - University of California, Berkeley
B.A. in Statistics from University of Minnesota, Minneapolis