OraSure Techologies Inc., a diagnostics company that has landed contracts with the US government to supply coronavirus test kits, is parting ways with its general counsel Agnieszka “Aggie” Gallagher after seven months on the job.
The company disclosed in a June 9 securities filing that Gallagher, whom OraSure hired in November, will leave effective June 25. OraSure said “organizational changes” resulted in Gallagher being fired with “good reason”.
Gallagher did not respond to a request for comment. Amy Koch, a spokeswoman for OraSure, declined to discuss Gallagher’s impending departure beyond what the Bethlehem, Pa.-based company said in its 8-K filing.
Bloomberg News reported in January that OraSure had signed contracts worth nearly $555 million to conduct studies and provide rapid tests for Covid-19.
OraSure announced last month the appointment of a new CEO in Carrie Eglinton Manner. She took over from interim CEO Nancy Gagliano, who will remain on the board after taking over from former CEO Stephen Tang on April 1. OraSure also said last month that it would end its search for “strategic alternatives” to increase shareholder value, such as selling the business or making a major investment.
Gallagher joined OraSure last year after spending more than a year as chief ethics and compliance officer for Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc., a company that seeks to use RNA interference technology to develop treatments. for certain diseases, including Covid-19. In March, Alnylam sued Pfizer Inc. and Moderna Inc., claiming the two pharmaceutical companies infringed its patents by manufacturing their popular Covid-19 vaccines.
Alnylam hired Gallagher in late 2020 as general counsel and chief compliance officer for ViiV Healthcare Ltd., a company owned by global drug giant GlaxoSmithKline PLC. Gallagher spent more than three years at ViiV and three more at GSK.
Gallagher, originally from Poland, began his legal career as an associate at White & Case in New York and Warsaw. She moved internally in 2000 to Pfizer, where she spent most of the next decade before moving on to brief stints at Medtronic PLC and Sandoz AG. GSK hired her in 2013.
Although Gallagher was not one of Alnylam’s five highest-paid executives last year, according to a proxy statement filed by the Cambridge, Mass.-based company, she made the summary compensation table on latest from OraSure.
OraSure paid Gallagher at least $1.3 million for eight months of work. The company noted in its most recent proxy statement filed in April that its new general counsel received $1 million in stock and options after arriving on board last November 26, as well as nearly $267,500 in cash. . She currently owns more than $300,000 in OraSure stock, according to Bloomberg data.
Jack Jerrett, Gallagher’s predecessor as OraSure’s chief legal officer, had a salary of nearly $1.5 million last year. OraSure gave him $855,000 in stock, nearly $423,700 in base salary and a bonus of about $169,500, according to his proxy filing. Jerrett retired on December 31 but continued to serve as a consultant for OraSure until February 28 of this year, in accordance with his retirement agreement with the company.
Bloomberg data shows Jerrett still owns nearly $415,000 in the company’s stock. OraSure, which also does home DNA testing and produced the first rapid HIV test approved for use in the United States, hired Jerrett more than two decades ago.