Why Clay Siegall Decided To Pursue Developing Cancer Cures

Entrepreneur Clay Siegall has been in the healthcare industry for 30 years. He says that his father was diagnosed with cancer when Clay was just 19 years old. His father died from this disease five years later. At the time oncologists didn’t have a lot of tools to treat cancer. He decided he wanted to be involved in making tools for oncologists based on cutting-edge technology. His doctorate in genetics was earned at Washington D.C.’s George Washington University.

Clay Siegall says he continues to learn as much as he can every day. As he has pointed out, people in their 20s think they know everything. By the time people are in their 30s it finally dawns on most people they don’t actually know it all, and once a person is in their 40s they realize there actually isn’t much they do know. He says he enjoys talking to really smart people because he often comes away having learned something of real value.

At the company Clay Siegall built, Seattle Genetics, they have so far really focused their business strategy on collaborating with other companies in their industry as they seek to develop the next generation of oncology drugs. His company’s particular specialty is developing drugs from antibody drug conjugates, or ADCs. He seeks to create new ideas and approaches so that people can survive a cancer diagnosis.

It was in 1998 that he co-founded Seattle Genetics along with a business partner. He is now the chief executive officer and president of this firm and is also the chairman of its board. He serves on the director on a number of other Pacific Northwest biotech firms as well including Alder Biopharmaceuticals Inc., Mirna Therapeutics Inc., and Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical. Clay Siegall’s company is now the largest biotech company in that region of the country and its stock is publically traded on the NASDAQ under stock ticker SGEN.

Prior to opening Seattle Genetics he had worked for Bristol-Myers Squibb for six years. He was also at the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute for three years which is where he started his professional career.