Leadership Team

Robert D. Auerbach,
Robert D. Auerbach, M.D., President

Dr. Bob Auerbach joined CooperSurgical in 2005 first as Chief Medical Officer and then later in the role of Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer where he was actively involved in operations and served as point person for merger and acquisition activities. In April 2018, he was named President. After graduating Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Omega Alpha with highest honors from the Lehigh-Hahnemann 6-year BA-MD program in Philadelphia, he completed his internship and residency in obstetrics & gynecology at Yale. Subsequently Bob was a member of the Yale School of Medicine clinical faculty and held leadership roles in medical student and resident education. In 2005 he was the recipient of Yale’s Francis Gilman Blake Award as the most outstanding teacher of the medical sciences and was elected to the Society of Distinguished Teachers. Bob continues to serve Yale University as an adjunct faculty member of the School of Medicine and as an Executive Board member of the Center for Biomedical Innovation and Technology (CBIT).

Kerry Blair
Kerry Blair, Chief Operating Officer

Even though Kerry didn’t officially join CooperSurgical until 1998 as Vice President of Engineering, he had a hand in the business since 1995. In fact, Kerry was responsible for the development of the RUMI system, a device that CooperSurgical purchased that year and is still sold today. Since 2001, Kerry has overseen all CooperSurgical’s global operations, including factory integration of acquired companies and technologies. During his career, Kerry has managed the development of several groundbreaking devices, such as the world’s first TCAS (Traffic Collision Avoidance System) for General Aviation and even patented the first commercially available “Digital Colposcope” product. He has an undergraduate degree in Industrial Technology from Berry College and graduated with honors from the University of Kansas with a BSEE in Electrical Engineering.

Cheryl H. Bogardus,
Cheryl H. Bogardus, Executive Vice President,
Market Development &  Corporate Communications

Cheryl joined CooperSurgical in 2007 as Vice President of Marketing and over the next eleven years assembled a stellar team of marketing communications, product management and customer service professionals to meet the needs of CooperSurgical’s growing business. As of May 2018, she is responsible for growth through market development including new geographies, new indications and strategic partnerships. In addition, she supports M&A activities and manages corporate communications. Cheryl began her career in pharmaceutical sales with Merck and subsequently worked over 25 years in medical device sales and marketing positions at other respected healthcare companies. Prior to joining CooperSurgical, she held the position of Worldwide Marketing Director for Ethicon Women’s Health and Urology, a Johnson & Johnson.

John Calcagno,
John Calcagno, Executive Vice President, Finance

John joined CooperSurgical in March 2018 working primarily on integration and other finance related projects. In November 2018, John was named Executive Vice President of Finance. Prior to joining CooperSurgical, John spent 20 years in the medical device industry in various finance and operational roles including 18 years at CooperVision when they grew from $25 million to $1 billion in revenue. From 2003-2009, John was Chief Financial Officer at CooperVision and provided leadership as the company transitioned through several system implementations and integrations. He built an international finance team across 20 different countries. His team provided both financial reporting and supported operations with key data and metrics to run the business. More recently, he was CFO of a private medical device company and played a key role in selling the company in 2017. John has a BS in Accounting from St. John Fisher College in Pittsford, NY and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Val Choumitsky
Val Choumitsky, Vice President, Customer Experience

Val joined CooperSurgical in 2013 as Senior Director of Customer Service and under his leadership, our Trumbull-based customer service group has attained unparalleled levels of customer satisfaction. In 2017, Val was promoted to VP, Customer Experience which includes additional responsibility for managing Client Services for CooperGenomics. Prior to joining CooperSurgical, he spent 28 years managing customer service operations at Siemens Medical Solutions. Throughout his career, his heightened understanding of technology has enabled him to utilize innovative systems to ensure customers receive the best possible service. Val received his undergraduate degree and MBA from the University of Phoenix.

David T. Hansen
David T. Hansen, President,
Global Fertility and Genomics

David joined CooperSurgical in 2015 as President, CooperSurgical International and as Managing Director, Origio A/S. After starting a career in macro hedge funds, he co-founded NetDania Solutions (fintech). From 1995-2008, he was at Novo Nordisk (pharma) in General Management, Finance and Business Development roles. From 2008–2014 he was President of the Research Models & Solutions division at Taconic Biosciences Inc. David holds a BSc in Economics from Roskilde University, Denmark, and MBA from Cal State East Bay (USA).

Russell Heinrich
Russell S. Heinrich, Ph.D., 
Executive Vice President, R&D

Russell joined CooperSurgical in 2013 and has been leading Research & Development ever since. His talented teams work to identify and develop new products as well as to sustain and improve current products. Before joining CooperSurgical, Russell worked at Covidien (now Medtronic) and Beckman Coulter in various R&D roles. He has contributed more than 80 patents to the medical device field and launched many impactful new products. Russell holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech and bachelor’s degrees in Biomedical and Electrical Engineering from Duke University.

Dhiresh Jethwa
Dhiresh Jethwa, Vice President, Information Technologies

Dhiresh joined CooperSurgical in June 2019 as Senior Vice President of Information Technology and now leads the company’s global Information Technology organization. Previously, he held several senior information technology roles including CIO for Dorel Sports, CIO at Gerber Scientific as well as senior IT roles at Christie’s, SIRVA and E&J Gallo. He received his MBA from The Open University Business School in UK.

Kurt Karcher
Kurt R. Karcher, Executive Vice President, Principle Architect

Kurt began his career at CooperSurgical back in 1992 when he was hired as our IT Manager. As our business grew, Kurt was promoted to Director of IT and in 2004 was named Vice President of IT. In 2018, he became Executive Vice President of IT where he managed a talented global team, responsible for worldwide IT infrastructure and data security. Most recently, Kurt has taken on the leadership role for a critical multi-year project which involves bringing all CooperSurgical’s global locations onto common, best-in-class software platforms.

Claudia Navarro
Claudia Navarro, Senior Vice President,
Regulatory Affairs and Quality Assurance

Claudia joined CooperSurgical in the position of Vice President Regulatory Affairs in August 2018. In May 2019, she was promoted to her new role where she is now responsible for all global Quality Assurance & Regulatory Affairs functions. Prior to joining the company, Claudia has worked in the medical device and pharmaceutical industries for over 20 years, holding positions of increasing responsibility at a variety of companies including Siemens, Bayer, Covidien/Medtronic and most recently, Alexion Pharmaceuticals. Claudia holds a BS in Chemistry and is currently working towards her MS in Regulatory Science at Johns Hopkins University.

Graceann A. Pisano
Graceann A. Pisano, Corporate Counsel

Graceann joined CooperSurgical in January 2017 as our first in-house counsel, and under her management it has already expanded. She provides pragmatic legal guidance related to overall company strategy and key business initiatives, while having oversight for all activities including M&A matters, contracts, litigation and promotion and advertising review. Graceann began her legal career over 17 years ago and has experience as a trademark attorney at Cummings & Lockwood and then at Wiggin and Dana before moving into regulated industries with Diageo and HomeServe. She has a BA in English Literature from Albertus Magnus and her JD from Quinnipiac University School of Law.

Kerry Tehan
Kerry Tehan, Vice President, Human Resources

Kerry joined CooperSurgical in January 2019. Kerry has an extensive background with over 20 years of progressive experience leading Human Resources. At CooperSurgical, Kerry is responsible is a key advisor to the leadership team and works to assure CooperSurgical advances its business, attracts and retains top talent and further embeds our core values in our dynamic culture. Most recently, Kerry was the head of Human Resources for Lydall Inc. a 3,000-person global organization where she was responsible for creating and executing a global HR strategy to support the company’s objectives. Prior to Lydall she had several progressive positions in HR at Medtronic and Covidien. Kerry holds a master’s degree in Human Resources from Framingham State University and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Worcester State University.

Matthew J. Topliff
Matthew J. Topliff, Executive Vice President, Business Development and Strategy

After spending nine years in various roles at The Cooper Companies and CooperVision, Matt joined CooperSurgical in May 2016 as Vice President, Business Development. Prior to joining The Cooper Companies, he performed consulting roles both at Oracle and The Keystone Group. Since joining CooperSurgical, Matt has been integral in our many acquisitions. In addition, he has functioned as the Integration Manager for acquired companies. In his current position, he is responsible for continued implementation of our company acquisition strategy and functions as the primary lead for acquisitions. Matt graduated from Indiana University with a double major in Finance and International Studies from the Kelley School of Business.

Mark P. Valentine
Mark P. Valentine, President, Global Medical Devices

Mark joined CooperSurgical in January 2018 as Executive Vice President of Sales, Americas. In May of 2018 he was named President, Global Medical Devices. Mark is a leader with general management P&L skills, core competencies in sales & marketing and has experience managing both large public and private equity medical device enterprises. He has a demonstrated track record of growing revenue and income through the development of business strategies with a focus on building strong customer centric teams that drive results. Prior to joining CooperSurgical, he spent 21 years in various commercial leadership positions at multiple Johnson & Johnson companies including Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Cordis Endovascular. After leaving there, Mark accomplished two global private equity turnarounds in commercial leadership positions. He has a BS in Business from Providence College.