Caren Heller

Chief Scientific Officer

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation

Dr. Caren Heller is the Chief Scientific Officer at the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation where she is responsible for all mission-related activities, including a diverse research portfolio, education, support, and advocacy programs.

Working with leading scientists and clinicians, Dr. Heller is responsible for investing more than $25 million in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) research and infrastructure, including IBD Plexus®, an innovative disease-specific big data platform; IBD Qorus™, a quality of healthcare improvement network; IBD Ventures, an entrepreneurial investing program; industry-academic drug discovery initiatives; and investigator-initiated research projects. She has also been instrumental in focusing the Foundation on emerging translational research areas, including environmental triggers, fibrosis, and precision nutrition; and on clinical trials activities, including establishing a clinical trials initiative for patients and caregivers and expanding the activities of the Foundation’s clinical research networks to include adult, pediatric, and surgery research networks.

Prior to joining the Foundation as its first chief scientific officer in 214, Dr. Heller was Associate Dean for Intercampus and Industry Initiatives at Weill Cornell Medical College. Dr. Heller has prior work experience as a consultant and an employee at large biopharmaceutical and start-up companies related to pharmaceutical drug development, medical/commercial evaluation of new therapies and technologies, and strategic planning for new program and product opportunities.

Dr. Heller received her M.D. from Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons, and an M.B.A. from The University of Chicago Booth Graduate School of Business. She is board certified in internal medicine and trained in rheumatology and clinical pharmacology. Dr. Heller recently completed a 4-year term on the National Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases Advisory Council of the NIH. She was selected for inclusion in Crain’s inaugural Notable Women in Health Care in NYC, 218.