Dr. Franson currently serves as a Principal of Faegre Drinker Consulting where he leads the firm’s life sciences regulatory consulting practice and was previously Chief Medical Officer for YourEncore. He spent the majority of his professional career with Eli Lilly and Co. (Lilly Research Laboratories) from 1986 until 2008, retiring from the leadership role of Global Vice President for Regulatory Affairs and Drug Safety (2003-2008), and was directly responsible for Lilly’s regulatory submissions including over 25 major approvals, as well as regulatory compliance and policy matters. Prior to his work at Lilly, Dr. Franson was an Assistant Professor of Medicine (Infectious Diseases) and Hospital Epidemiologist at Medical College of Wisconsin (Milwaukee).
He has extensive experience in early and late phase drug development relating to clinical, regulatory, quality and related disciplines. Franson has represented industry in policy matters including Congressional testimony for renewals of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act. Franson was a member of the Steering Committee for the independently developed draft guidance for FDA consideration regarding development of drugs for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and continues to collaborate in providing rare disease drug development advice for multiple companies and advocacy groups, with emphasis in neurological diseases. His consulting practice has served over 100 client firms with involvement in over 20 major product approvals. He also served from 2016-2021 as Chair of the Board of Directors for the Critical Path Institute (funded by FDA and the Gates Foundation for biomarker and data consortia endeavors) and remains on that Board. He was the President of the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention from 2010- 2015 and continues to serve on their Board of Trustees. He now serves as a Director for Paratek Pharmaceuticals and Cidara Therapeutics, and is Adjunct Professor of Clinical Pharmacology at Indiana University School of Medicine.
Dr. Franson served on the Xavier University of Louisiana Board of Trustees from 2002-2008; Regulatory Advisory Board–Center for Medicines Research International from 2003-2008; Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (past chair of Clinical Steering Committee, past chair of GMP Task Force, past chair of FDA Staff Work Group, member-Regulatory Affairs Committee and co-chair of PDUFA-3 coordination/negotiations committee); Auburn University Harrison School of Pharmacy Dean's Advisory Committee; and Drake College of Pharmacy National Advisory Committee. Dr. Franson also served on American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy’s Pharmaceutical Education Advisory Committee and the Association of American Medical Colleges-PhRMA Clinical Trials Forum. Dr. Franson was named James Scholar–University of Illinois College of Medicine (1977-78); is a member of Rho Chi Honor Society– Drake University College of Pharmacy; earned Lilly Chairman's Ovation Award (2002); and was awarded Sagamore of the Wabash by Indiana Governor Mitchell E. Daniels Jr. for community service. Dr. Franson’s professional interests include infectious diseases in the elderly (having served as former NIA/NIH RO-1 principal investigator); hospital epidemiology (device associated nosocomial infections); and antibiotic DUR, as well as rare disease policy development.