The Milken Institute’s senior scientists serve as BD² program leaders ensuring the scientists, people with lived experience, clinicians, and philanthropists are working in concert.

Cara Altimus, PhD

Managing Director

Cara Altimus, PhD is managing director of BD² and a senior director at the Milken Institute where she leads the Center’s biomedical philanthropy portfolio. A PhD neuroscientist, Altimus developed and leads the Center’s work on bipolar disorder. Aligning the interests of multiple philanthropists, the research and clinical field, and people with lived experience, she facilitated the development of BD² from concept to reality.

Daniel Pham, PhD

Program Director

Daniel Pham, PhD is a program director of the BD² Research Programs and an associate director at the Milken Institute. He has played a lead role in building the foundation for BD², cultivating productive collaborations and co-authoring multiple publications on bipolar disorder. Pham also researched and wrote the Institute’s Giving Smarter Guide, “Giving Smarter: Philanthropic Opportunities to Advance Bipolar Disorder Research.”

Emily Baxi, PhD

Program Director

Emily Baxi, PhD is a program director of the BD² Integrated Network for Bipolar Disorder program and a director at the Milken Institute. She joined the team in January 2022 to operationalize and lead the Integrated Network program. Baxi was an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University where she served as the executive director of the Packard Center for ALS Research and program director for Answer ALS, a multi-institutional ALS research program.

Veronica Beck, PhD

Program Manager

Veronica Beck, PhD is a program manager for BD² and a senior associate at the Milken Institute. A neuroscientist by training, Beck has experience fostering interdisciplinary partnerships between business, basic science, and medical science sectors as well as in managing projects and administering grant programs. She serves as the primary coordinator for BD² Integrated Network initiatives.

Kelsey Barcomb, PhD

Program Manager

Kelsey Barcomb, PhD is a program manager for BD² and a senior associate at the Milken Institute. Barcomb received her doctorate in pharmacology from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and completed postdoctoral training in the field of neuroscience. She uses her background in biomedical research and project management to oversee grants management and community building within BD².