Our Staff

Scientific and Administrative Management Team

John R. Cashman. Ph.D.
President and Founder
John R. Cashman. Ph.D., President and Founder, has more than 32 years of experience in biomedical research as a researcher, consultant, entrepreneur or administrator. In 1997, he founded the Human BioMolecular Research Institute, a non-profit research institute dedicated to conducting fundamental and applied research to address important human diseases. Previously, he was Senior Scientist at the Seattle Biomedical Research Institute and prior to that, he was Associate Director for the IGEN Research Institute in Seattle, Washington. In 1984, he was appointed Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the University of California, San Francisco. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Chemistry at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts with Professor E.J. Corey (1982-1984). In 1990, Professor Corey received the Nobel Prize. Dr. Cashman received his Masters and doctorate degrees in Medicinal Chemistry from the University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas (1982). Prior to graduate school, he obtained bachelor degrees in chemistry and biology at the College of Creative Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara (1977). Dr. Cashman was a University of California Presidents Undergraduate Researcher (1974-1976), received a Sigma Xi Undergraduate Research fellowship (1975), was a PEW Scholar Nominee at the University of California, San Francisco (1986), received a March of Dimes Basil O’Connor Research Award (1986), was appointed Technical Advisor, San Francisco Estuary Project (1990) and was elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 1996. In 1991, Dr. Cashman was appointed to the Editorial Advisory Board, Chemical Research in Toxicology and in 1999 he was appointed to the Editorial Advisory Board of Current Drug Metabolism. Dr. Cashman is the author of over 230 research articles or book chapters and 16 patents in the area of drug discovery and evaluation. He is extensively consulted by biotechnology, pharmaceutical industry and government in various areas of human drug development, drug safety evaluation, medicinal chemistry, pharmacogenetics and biochemical toxicology. Dr. Cashman is on the Board of Directors of three biotechnology companies.

Click Here to View a list of Publications by John R. Cashman, Ph.D


Rebekah Handley

Chief Operating Officer
Rebekah Handley, Chief Operating Officer. Since 2006 Mrs. Handley has served as the institute’s Chief Operating Officer. Prior to her current position, Mrs. Handley was the Senior Administrative Officer at HBRI. Rebekah is currently pursuing her masters in Nonprofit Leadership and Management from the University of San Diego. She received her B.A. in Business Administration from Point Loma Nazarene University in 2002.


Jiongjia Cheng, Ph.D.
Scientist (Biology)
Jiongjia Cheng, Ph.D. is an expert biochemist and structural biologist with extensive experience in protein purification and characterization. She has extensive experience in biochemistry/cell biology In addition, she has experience collaborating with scientists from various backgrounds from cell biology to pharmacology to structural biology. Currently, Dr. Cheng is a Scientist at HBRI and her ongoing projects are focused on development of drug-like compounds for in vivo applications, including new approaches to solving fundamental problems associated with cancer and cardiac disease.


Dong-Hoon Lee, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Researcher (Biology)

Mark Johnson, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Researcher (Chemistry)


Institute Affiliate Members

Ronald Christopher, Ph.D., Affiliate Scientist
Milan Fiala, M.D., Affiliate Scientist
Angelo Castellino, Ph.D., Affiliate Scientist