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Women of the C-Suite: “I hope that, as we move forward, women continue to ask for opportunities to lead, and that there are people at the top presenting these opportunities, too” With Jen Moses

I think people respond to people they feel they know and have their best interests at heart. Being able to make connections with the individuals on your team helps build a relationship of trust. In large groups, you can’t always connect with everyone, but it’s important to be thoughtful about making connections where you can, […]

I think people respond to people they feel they know and have their best interests at heart. Being able to make connections with the individuals on your team helps build a relationship of trust. In large groups, you can’t always connect with everyone, but it’s important to be thoughtful about making connections where you can, and to let people see the real you. I hope that, as we move forward, women continue to ask for opportunities to lead, and that there are people at the top presenting these opportunities, too.


I had the pleasure to interview Jennifer (Jen) Moses. Jen is the chief financial officer of G1 Therapeutics — a North Carolina-based company on a mission to develop innovative therapies that improve the lives of those affected by cancer. Since joining in 2015, Jen has played a critical role in the company’s financial growth from a small start-up to a publicly traded company with three therapies that may change the way people with cancer are treated. She was the finance lead for the company’s $105 million IPO in 2017 as well as for a series of follow-on financings totaling more than $300 million, providing capital to fuel company growth and, most importantly, advance the development of G1’s potentially life-changing cancer treatments. As CFO, Jen has directed the implementation of financial controls and systems, as well as overseen the expansion of the finance department at G1. Previously, Jen was a partner at Rankin McKenzie, LLC, where she served as acting chief financial officer and controller for venture-backed companies. In addition to preparing clients for growth by developing long-term financial plans and implementing financial systems, reporting and analysis, she led multiple clients through private placement offerings and acquisitions. Before joining Rankin McKenzie, Jen held roles of increasing responsibility at Deloitte, including providing tax services to clients and later focusing on strategic planning and internal communications in the Office of the CEO of Deloitte Tax. Jen received her B.S. in Accounting from The Pennsylvania State University and is a certified public accountant in the State of North Carolina.


Thank you so much for doing this with us Jen! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

Incollege, finance was something I was drawn to. After working in public accounting after graduating, I realized I really enjoyed working with start-up companies that are fast-moving and entrepreneurial. I left public accounting to start working with these kinds of companies.

Later in my career, I was working as a consultant with several small companies acting at the CFO or controller level. G1 was one of those clients. At first, they didn’t take up much of my time, but as the company grew, the accounting and finance needs became more complex. Right when we started contemplating going public, I decided to come over to G1 full-time.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company?

I started at G1 when it was three employees in a lab. What I’ve really enjoyed about this position is that I’ve been able to witness firsthand the growth from very early on, when we received our first round of funding, to going public.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

While I’ve made and learned from mistakes throughout my career, I have to admit the rumors are true — accounting doesn’t lend itself to a lot of hilarious situations. What I have taken away from any situation where mistakes happen is to respond quickly, act with transparency, and most importantly, do not dwell on your or others’ mistakes. They happen — move on and make sure people know they can trust you to own up to your mistakes, and be supportive rather than punitive when colleagues have a misstep.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

I think we have a very distinct culture. We’ve always been a “science first” organization — everyone here is focused on science — but we’ve always been very devoted to our people, and that combination is unique. It has helped propel our programs at the fast pace we’ve been able to develop them, while also being efficient and thoughtful. If you have good people, good things follow.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

I think our whole drug development pipeline is exciting, and I’m excited that we’re planning to submit our filing for trilaciclib in 2020, which is an important step toward making it available to people with cancer. Trilaciclib is a new approach to cancer treatment — known as myelopreservation — that’s focused on protecting a patient’s bone marrow and improving outcomes for patients receiving chemotherapy. It’s our baby, it’s our first candidate, and it just received breakthrough therapy designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which is designed to expedite development and review of treatments intended for serious or life-threatening conditions. It’s been an interesting process to watch the acceleration of trilaciclib over the years, and the potential benefit it has to patients is powerful and inspiring.

What advice would you give to other female leaders to help their team to thrive?

The advice I would give is to be authentic and to be yourself. It’s a unique time to be a woman in a leadership role. I think that, for a long time, everyone was trying to fit in some mold, and I think right now women leaders who are successful find their own voice and can lead in a way that is true to themselves. I would encourage women in leadership to focus on what they do well, and to have confidence in that.

In a larger sense, I think that having more women in leadership can help move the conversation and inspire more perspectives in the companies and communities they serve, in ways that wouldn’t happen otherwise. I don’t always view it as being a woman in the role; I think of it as having a different perspective, and these different perspectives allow teams to thrive.

What advice would you give to other female leaders about the best way to manage a large team?

I think people respond to people they feel they know and have their best interests at heart. Being able to make connections with the individuals on your team helps build a relationship of trust. In large groups, you can’t always connect with everyone, but it’s important to be thoughtful about making connections where you can, and to let people see the real you. I hope that, as we move forward, women continue to ask for opportunities to lead, and that there are people at the top presenting these opportunities, too.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I can immediately think of two people. One person was a colleague at Deloitte. She was a successful partner at the company, had three kids and juggled it all. Being able to watch her do that at a young age and see what worked for her and what didn’t — which she was very transparent about — was extremely helpful when I was evaluating my own career path.

Another is Dr. Mark Velleca, the CEO of G1. He is very driven, focused on milestones and making things happen. Being able to watch and learn from him over the past few years has been very helpful when it comes to setting a pace for work, getting things done and delivering results — it’s something I’ve tried to model.

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?

Every day, I really just try to do the best that I can for my company, because I truly believe in the work that G1 is doing to help people undergoing cancer treatment. Whatever I can do to make this company successful is my contribution. I also want to make sure that I’m doing my best not only for the company at large, but the individuals who work here, too.

What are your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started” and why? (Please share a story or example for each.)

  • It’s okay to not know the answer. Ask questions. The earlier you figure that out, the better off you’ll be.
  • Look for a mentor as soon as you can. If you can find a mentor in someone that you already have a great relationship with and you like how they work, that will be extremely helpful to your career.
  • Learn from others. Seek opportunities to learn from people who are different from you, have different styles, priorities, goals and ways of working. Figure out what works for them and what doesn’t. Learning how to connect with people who are different than you will help you in the long term.
  • No job is too small, especially when you’re starting out. If you can take on a task and learn the intricacies of it, it’ll pay off in the long run because a lot of people don’t take the time to do that. You’ll develop a basis of knowledge that you can draw on years later that not everyone will have.
  • You don’t need to have it all figured out. There is not one path to success and being open to new opportunities is what makes your career interesting.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

When I was first starting out at G1, I remember walking into the lab and there was a sign on the blackboard that said, “Today is a great day to cure cancer.” You can’t really get much better than that. I would hope that what we do at G1 can inspire others to do whatever they can for cancer patients, because if you can do that every day, you’re doing okay.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

At G1, we always say that “the patient is waiting.” When it comes to making tough decisions, we have to remember that our job is to focus on the patients we serve and put their needs first. When we’re faced with some kind of an “either-or” decision, this is what we come back to.

We are blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂

Serena Williams. Since I just went to the U.S. Open for the first time, she is top of mind. The way she has stayed at the top of her game, for so many years, while still being her authentic self has been amazing to watch.

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