John P. Butler

Mr. Butler joined Akebia in Cambridge, Massachusetts as President and CEO in September, 2013. He has more than 35 years of experience leading the development, launch and commercialization of innovative therapies. He led Akebia's Initial Public Offering in 2014, and over the past ten years has raised well over $1 billion through equity offerings and multiple non-dilutive license agreements, to finance the development of Akebia's novel pipeline.  He also led the 2018 merger with Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, creating a fully integrated biopharma company driven by the purpose to better the life of each person impacted by kidney disease through developing and delivering innovative therapeutic products.

He served as CEO of Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals, a company focused on developing products for patients with hemophilia, from 2011 until 2013. He led the sale of the company's assets, including the company's lead asset to Baxter Corporation, the world leader in hemophilia. The value of the transactions should exceed $1 billion to Inspiration's shareholders.

From 1997 to 2011, Mr. Butler held various positions at Genzyme Corporation, one of the world's largest biotechnology companies. While at Genzyme, he most recently served as President of the company's rare genetic diseases business, which has developed and commercialized first-to-market, transformative therapies for small patient populations. Mr. Butler also led the company's renal, endocrinology, and cardiovascular businesses, growing the division to $1 billion in revenue. Earlier in his career, he held sales and marketing positions at Amgen and Hoffman-La Roche. Mr. Butler received his BA degree in Chemistry from Manhattan College and his MBA degree from Baruch College. 

Mr. Butler has spent over thirty years working to improve the lives of patients with kidney disease. He served in a number of commercial roles while at Amgen for Epogen® and led the renal business at Genzyme which brought Renagel®, Renvela®, and Hectorol® to the market. He was a member of the Board of Directors of Relypsa, Inc. a company developing a first-in-class hyperkalemia therapeutic in patients with kidney disease, and served as Chairman of the Board at Keryx Biopharmaceuticals. 

Mr. Butler served as Chair of Kidney Care Partners (KCP), a unique coalition representing the broad kidney community, from 2020-2023.  KCP advocates for patients with kidney disease on issues such as treatment choice and access to innovation, both on Capitol Hill and with federal agencies. Mr. Butler also served as a member of the Board of Directors of Zynerba Pharmaceuticals. Additionally, he served on the American Kidney Fund Board of Trustees from 2008-2017, including serving as the Chair from 2013-2015 and has recently rejoined the Board. Mr. Butler also currently serves as a member of the Board of Wave Break Therapeutics.