Stella M. Robertson, PhD
Stella Robertson is an experienced pharmaceutical Research and Development executive who helps entrepreneurs and start-ups launch and grow emerging technology companies. She is the founder and owner of Arrochar Consulting LLC, specializing in due diligence, translational research, product development and the life sciences. Stella is a member and investor with Cowtown Angels, an angel investment network based in Fort Worth, a founding partner of BIOS Equity Partners, LP, and is a volunteer and mentor with TECH Fort Worth, a local non-profit incubator/accelerator. Stella serves as a corporate board member, board observer, and scientific advisor for early stage companies, as a scientific advisor for Steelhead Capital Management, LLC, and as a volunteer faculty in the Department of Ophthalmology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dallas, TX.
Stella formerly was a Vice President in R&D at Alcon Laboratories, Inc., a Division of Novartis, where she grew and led organizations that were responsible for the ophthalmic pipeline, including pharmaceuticals and medical devices. As a Senior Scientist, Stella founded the immunology and cell biology laboratory at Alcon in 1981, which developed some of the first human ocular cell lines used for drug discovery. Her lab expanded over time to the allergy and inflammation research programs, uveitis, wound healing and retina research. In 1991, Stella transitioned into development and operations. During her tenure at Alcon she and her colleagues successfully developed, registered, and globally launched sixteen ophthalmic medications to treat ocular allergy, pain, inflammation, glaucoma, uveitis, and infection, and also medications for otitis and nasal allergy. She has over 25 years of experience in applied research and global product development, including R&D strategies, project management, clinical trials, market support, external collaborations, compliance, and medical communications.
Dr. Robertson received a PhD in Biology from Johns Hopkins University, studying mucosal secretory immunity as a NIH pre-doctoral trainee recipient with John J. Cebra, PhD. She was a post-doctoral research fellow of the Arthritis Foundation and an Assistant Instructor in the Microbiology Department, University of Texas Health Science Center at Dallas, developing techniques for increasing hybridization frequency to produce monoclonal antibodies to study idiotypic immune regulation and anti-microbial treatment and diagnosis. Her research interests include local immune and inflammatory mechanisms, allergy, retina, uveitis, infection, diagnostics, and drug delivery. She holds a number of patents and is the author or co-author of over 50 publications.
Stella has been a member of Women in Ophthalmology and ARVO (IM section) since 1982. She served on the ARVO Commercial Relationship Committee from 2005-2008 and the ARVO Foundation WEAVR luncheon auction committee 2013-2015. She is currently serving on the WEAVR Leadership Committee and the ARVO Foundation Board.