Ken Lee, a longtime executive with Ernst & Young and now a principal with Hatteras BioCapital, is the new chairman of the board of directors at Inspire Pharmaceuticals.

He replaces Leigh Thompson, a retired Eli Lilly executive, who died last week.

“His extensive experience in working with biotechnology companies and the investment community, combined with his strong organizational skills and keen financial acumen are extremely valuable to our board and will serve him well in his leadership role as chairman,” said Christy Shaffer, chief executive officer of Inspire, about Lee.

Lee also sits on the board at Abgenix, CV Therapeutics, Pozen and Hemocellular Therapeutics.

Thompson served on Inspire’s board since 1996 and became chairman in 2002.