Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees of Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience is a group of dedicated professionals representing a variety of backgrounds and expertise. The Board actively participates in the guidance of the Institute towards fulfilling its mission while maintaining the highest standards of accountability.

As a public not-for-profit institution, the Institute takes seriously its responsibilities to maintain public trust and to integrate sound business practices into its daily operations. The Board reviews the Institute’s activities and progress towards its fundamental goal of conducting basic research to stimulate novel approaches in understanding the structure, function and development of neural circuits.

Dr. Asifa Akhtar
Chair of the Board of Trustees
Director, Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics

Mr. George Elmore
Founder and President, Hardrives, Inc.

Dr. David Fitzpatrick 
Scientific Director and Chief Executive Officer
Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience

The Honorable Louis J. Freeh
Founder and Chairman, Freeh Group International Solutions,
LLC Founder and Partner, Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP

Mr. James Harpel
Co-Founder of Two Roads Development and General Partner of First Reserve Corporation

Dr. Neen Hunt, Ed.D
President and Chief Executive Officer, The Mary Woodard Lasker Charitable Trust and the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation, Inc.

Mr. Kenneth F. Kahn
President, LRP Publications

Mr. Nasser J. Kazeminy
Founder and Chairman, NJK Holding Corporation

Mrs. Becky Mayer
Co-leader of the Good Life Executive Seminars
for personal advancement

Mr. Michael V. Mitrione, ESQ.
Co-Chair of Corporate Practice Group, Gunster, Yoakley & Stewart, P.A.

Mr. Gregory V. Novak, ESQ.
Vice-chair Intellectual Property Group, Co-Chair IP Litigation, Polsinelli, PC

Mrs. Jane Panattoni
Philanthropist and Nonprofit Leader

Mr. Bernard J. Poussot
Retired Chairman, Wyeth

Mr. John Sculley
Chairman, RxAdvance

Mr. Markus Schleier
Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science

Dr. James N. Weinstein
Immediate past CEO and President, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health

Board of Trustee – Members Emeriti

Professor Dr. Peter Gruss – Chairman Emeritus
President, Max Planck Society for the Advancement
of Science (2002-2014)

Mr. Alexander W. Dreyfoos
Chairman, The Dreyfoos Group

Dr. David C. Auth, Ph.D., P.E., NAE,
Chairman and CEO, Coaptus Medical Corporation

Professor Dr. Bill S. Hansson
Former Chairman of the Board of Trustees
Director, Department of Evolutionary Neuroethology
Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology


Scientific Advisory Board

As a necessary compliment to the operational guidance provided by the institute’s Board of Trustees, MPFI is scientifically guided by a Scientific Advisory Board (SAB).


Every Max Planck Institute is regularly assessed by an SAB, and held meetings in 2014, 2016 and 2018. SAB members are experts chosen from leading research institutions and universities. The main responsibility of the SAB is to provide regular evaluations of the institute’s scientific performance.

Dr. Ann Graybiel
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Dr. Michael Häusser
University College London

Dr. Anthony Movshon
New York University

Dr. Elly Nedivi
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Dr. Bernardo Sabatini
Harvard Medical School

Dr. Carla J. Shatz
Stanford University

Dr. Gary Westbrook
Vollum Institute