Gary Shope, a veteran economic developer in the Triangle, is joining drug contract manufacturing firm Patheon (TSX: PTI) as chief of staff.

The position is a new one at the company.

Shope served as vice president of economic development for 16 years at the Foundation. His most recent position was to lead development of a technology project in Saudi Arabia.

“I first met Gary in 1992 when he was with the Research Triangle Foundation,” said Patheon Chief Executive Officer James Mullen in a statement. “I was impressed with his skills, insights and leadership. His career has provided him with a wealth of experience in developing business relationships and coordinating the activities of many disparate entities for a common purpose and I look forward to the many contributions he will make in helping us profitably grow the organization.”

Mullen took over as CEO of Patheon in February.

Patheon provides drug formulation, analytical development, clinical and full-scale drug manufacturing. It works with some 300 pharmaceutical and biotech firms.

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