DURHAM – Aerie Pharmaceuticals has a new chief executive officer, naming veteran life science executive Raj Kannan to the post almost three months to the day after longtime CEO and chairman Vincente Anido left the company and his board post.

Kannan was announced as the new CEO early Thursday at Aerie (Nasdaq:AERI) that targets eye disease.

“During the search process, the Board was pleased to interview several strong candidates and Raj rose to the top of the list during the process. Raj brings a track record of building effective organizations and teams, launching and growing products in the U.S. and globally, building commercial operations, providing strategic direction to pipeline development and successfully guiding companies through important inflections in their growth trajectories,” said Benjamin F. McGraw, III, Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors, in the announcement.

Anido had led Aerie for some eight years, taking the company public. Aerie announces his departure as part of a “succession plan.”

“The Aerie team has built an impressive ophthalmology company with an exciting glaucoma franchise that is global in reach and an exciting pipeline of product development candidates that has the potential to create significant value,” said Kannan. “I am honored to have this opportunity to lead the company and work with this team to deliver on our commercial prospects and realize the full promise of our pipeline.”

Kannan most recently served as CEO of Chiasma, Inc.