Building an Alliance Management Team

Building a high-performing alliance management team is no easy task. Finding the right individuals, with the requisite technical knowledge, exemplary interpersonal skills, and innate ability to find and create win-win scenarios has always been a challenge. Add in our current business environment in which companies are forming more partnerships than ever before, while a historic labor shortage is also in place, and it can feel downright impossible! Join Katherine Kendrick, head of alliance management at Jazz Pharmaceuticals, Laura McCluer, vice president of global alliance at Xactly, Steve Courtney, head of strategic alliance management Evotec, and Adam Kornetsky, principal at Vantage Partners as they discuss their cross-industry experience in attracting, building, and retaining top talent for alliance management teams. Learn about the talent strategies these industry experts implement and what trends they are witnessing across the industry. Hear about the ways in which a growing alliance management team can demonstrate increased value to the broader organization.

Panel members will discuss key questions such as:


Adam Kornetsky
Vantage Partners

Adam Kornetsky is a principal at Vantage Partners, where he focuses life sciences and healthcare. Adam helps clients unlock the value of collaboration and achieve breakthrough results in a changing healthcare landscape. His experience includes advising organizations on building and executing alliance management capabilities, designing and implementing change management and organizational design initiatives, conducting partnership launches and health checks, and facilitating negotiation and conflict management training. Adam has also supported many clients in their goal of creating a more innovative business environment.

Adam has co-authored several articles on navigating complexities in healthcare partnerships, on topics that include virtual alliance launches and engagement model due diligence. He speaks regularly at Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP) conferences and frequently leads workshops at the Strategic Alliance Management Congress, exploring topics such as "Managing and Executing Pharma-Digital Partnerships" and "Alliance Managers as Interventionists."

Adam received his MBA with honors from Boston University's Questrom School of Business, with a concentration in Health Sector Management and focus on Leadership and Organizational Transformation. He received his BA in International Relations and Economics from Tufts University.


Steve Courtney, PhD
Executive Vice President, Head of Strategic Alliance Management

Steve Courtney is Executive Vice President, Head of Strategic Alliance Management at Evotec. Steve joined Evotec 18 years ago as a Department Head in Medicinal Chemistry, progressing to SVP Drug Discovery he has led several drug discovery programmes in collaboration with pharma and biotech organisations, resulting in the identification of drug candidates in oncology, pain, cardiovascular disease, and neurodegeneration. In 2016 Steve was a founding member of the Evotec Alliance Management function and had a global role in both developing the AM function and leading a portfolio of alliances. In 2021 Steve was promoted to EVP and now leads Evotec's Strategic Alliance Management group, he is currently working at Evotec's Princeton, NJ site while building his US team. Prior to Evotec, Steve was at Oxford GlycoSciences (UK) for 10 years with his final position as Medicinal Chemistry Group Leader. Steve gained his PhD in Chemistry from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow (UK) and followed this with postdoctoral research positions at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver (Canada) and the University of Portsmouth (UK).

Katherine Kendrick, CSAP
Head of Alliance Management
Jazz Pharmaceuticals

Katherine Kendrick is Head of Alliance Management at Jazz Pharmaceuticals, a global biopharmaceutical company that develops life-changing medicines for people with serious diseases, who often have limited or no options. Katherine leads the Jazz Alliance Management team and department, delivering alliance portfolio management and value for global partnerships in development and commercial life cycle phases. Prior to joining Jazz in 2019, Katherine was with Eli Lilly & Company and Elanco Animal Health, where she established and led the Alliance Management organization. For more than 20 years, Katherine has focused on global clinical development and strategic alliance partnering in the human and animal health pharmaceutical sector. She is passionate about building and optimizing alliance teams and advising alliance leaders, enabling challenging decision-making with a patient focused, alliance value driven approach. Katherine holds a BS in Biomedical Science from Texas A&M University and has been an active member of ASAP since 2011. It's not all about work for Katherine–in her personal time, she is a veterinary nursing student at Purdue University and volunteers with the veterinary team for Save Elephant Foundation in Thailand, rescuing and rehabilitating endangered Asian Elephants.

Laura McCluer, CSAP
Vice President Global Alliances
Xactly Corp

Laura is a vibrant Alliances and Channels executive dedicated to enabling exponential revenue growth and global market share through successful partnering. With over 20 years of experience, Laura has a passion for collaborating with partners to bring solutions and services to market that enable customers to maximize value creation from their technology investments.

Laura currently leads Xactly's Global Alliances organization where she is responsible for establishing and growing the company's global alliances and partnerships with software vendors and systems integrators. Prior to Xactly, Laura was VP of Hitachi Vantara's Global Technology Alliances where she was responsible for establishing and leading the company's global technology partnerships with software and hardware vendors. Before Hitachi Vantara, Laura was VP of Strategic Alliances and Channels for Software AG where she focused on developing and executing Software AG's strategic alliances and channel initiatives across North America.

Her early career includes marketing leadership and product management positions at various technology companies. She holds an MBA from the University of Utah David Eccles School of Business and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Goizueta Business School of Emory University.