Meet the team

karen_donatoKaren A. Donato, PhD
Chief Executive Officer
KAFA Consulting LLC

Dr. Karen A. Donato is an experienced life sciences professional with a proven track record in creating and expanding businesses into new applications and new geographies. Dr. Donato has a broad experience base covering strategic planning, marketing, sales, operations, and research and development in multi-national, mid-sized, and entrepreneurial companies.

Dr. Donato currently serves as Chief Executive Officer of KAFA Consulting LLC, a practice supporting life sciences companies in business development activities to extend geographical reach, expand markets and applications, and improve sales and marketing performance.

Prior to founding KAFA Consulting, Dr. Donato served as Executive Vice President of Global Business Development and Marketing at MaxCyte, Inc., a publically traded clinical stage company. Dr. Donato joined MaxCyte to develop a new business around MaxCyte’s instrument platform for cell engineering and modification. Recruiting and managing an international sales team, Dr. Donato expanded the geography of MaxCyte instrument sales from the US to Europe, and later to Japan, including all top ten pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Donato later led the expansion of the MaxCyte instrument business further into Asia to China, Taiwan, and Korea, a key objective of the MaxCyte IPO. Dr. Donato vetted, assigned, and interacted directly with distributors in the field.

Dr. Donato led marketing activities for the MaxCyte instrument business, including strategy, messaging, and tactics. Dr. Donato initiated collaborations between MaxCyte and other complementary technology providers and key opinion leaders to increase market exposure and identify new applications.

Prior to joining MaxCyte, Dr. Donato held executive sales and marketing positions at Summit Drug Development Company, a regulatory consulting firm, Celsis|In Vitro Technologies, a life sciences product company, and Gene Logic/TherImmune, a preclinical and clinical service provider. Dr. Donato also worked as a research engineer at Hoechst Celanese and at Johnson & Johnson/Ethicon in product and process development for biomedical materials. Prior to pursuing her PhD, Dr. Donato was a process engineer at DuPont.

Dr. Donato earned her PhD and MS from Ohio University and a BSE from the University of Pennsylvania, all in Chemical Engineering. Dr. Donato holds three patents in biomedical materials for transdermal drug delivery.