Epichem Leadership Team

"The very essence of leadership is that you have to have vision. You can't blow an uncertain trumpet."
-Theodore M. Hesburgh
Mr. Colin La Galia – Chief Executive Officer & Director

Colin brings 25 years of domestic and international pharmaceutical, diagnostics and healthcare senior executive experience to the role of CEO at Epichem and Director on the Epichem Board.

Formerly the Regional Business Director and Commercial Head of Asia Pacific, China and Japan for Abbott Rapid Diagnostics in Toxicology, Colin has also held senior leadership roles for Alere Inc, Origin Healthcare, Hollywood Fertility Centre, GlaxoSmithKline and Merck Sharpe & Dohme.

An accomplished global business and people leader, Colin has a proven record of driving commercial success and revenue growth with considerable expertise in key cross-functional areas of business development and market creation; sales and marketing; commercial strategy; process improvement; operational excellence; coaching and leadership development.

Colin has a passion for driving performance, developing people and is very proud to lead the Epichem team of dedicated professionals in delivering key outcomes in our state-of-the-art facilities in partnership with our Customers and Stakeholders.

Colin holds qualifications in Pharmaceuticals, Business Administration, Project Management and Human Resources and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management and a Justice of the Peace.

Dr Martine Keenan – Chief Scientific Officer & Director

Martine brings 20 years of experience in pharmaceutical and contract research organisations to her role at Epichem. Committed to ensuring Epichem delivers high quality organic chemistry services to customers, Martine enjoys leading a team of dedicated professionals focused on achieving client outcomes in a friendly and collaborative manner.


In her own speciality of drug discovery, Martine is a creative synthetic and medicinal chemist with extensive experience in all phases of preclinical research including design and synthesis of novel compounds, generation of IP, and compound optimisation towards drug candidates from all starting points. Her expertise spans a broad range of therapeutic areas including oncology, neuroscience and infectious diseases. She can help clients prioritise their work flow and advise on what critical data is needed to keep projects moving forwards.


Martine trained in the UK and Europe and worked at a multinational pharmaceutical company before coming to Perth.

Dr James Rixson – Head of Production

James is a technical expert in organic chemistry and a tenacious problem solver. He joined the chemistry team at Epichem in 2014, and leads the Fine Chemicals and Technical Services division in delivering the highest quality custom products, reference standards, impurities and degradants. James has expertise in a diverse range of organic synthesis including natural products, alkaloids, polycyclic aromatics, active pharmaceutical ingredients and their derivatives.


He is highly skilled in method development and route planning, isolation, purification and compound characterisation, and can help you with small scale compound library preparation, large scale synthesis and other specialty chemistries such as deuteration and chiral synthesis. He has a proven track record as an expert problem solver and drives innovation through his out-of-the-box thinking style.


James has a PhD in Organic Chemistry from the University of Western Australia and joined Epichem after completing an internship at a multinational pharmaceutical company.

Mr. Boon Tan – Head of Analytical Services & Quality Manager

Boon and his team of committed analytical chemists provide a comprehensive array of analytical services to get customers the information they need. From routine analyses and formal reporting, through to expert problem-solving, technical support and development of a comprehensive array of analytical methods and statistical analyses. Boon understands the need for rapid data turnaround in fast-paced industries. He is experienced in the oil and gas field, mining, fine chemical, pharmaceutical, agricultural, veterinary, food and biotechnology sectors.


Boon is a graduate of Curtin University and joined Epichem in 2016 as the Quality Manager, a position he still holds. He successfully guided Epichem to ISO9001 certification and accreditation to internationally recognised standards ISO17025 and ISO17034 for the production of reference materials for pharmaceutical manufacturing. He holds a Six Sigma certification, is fluent in multiple Asian languages and previously worked for a multi-national company within the analytical services field.

Ms Lauren Nieuwpoort – Corporate Services Manager & Company Secretary

Lauren is committed to providing strategic development, finance, and human resources services within Epichem’s leadership team. With 9 years’ experience maximising operational efficiency in a highly technical environment, her passion lies in niche business strategy, workforce planning, and process improvement initiatives that facilitate corporate growth in a highly specialised industry.


Lauren uses her unique skillset in science, business, and languages to work closely with Epichem’s global network of stakeholders.

Lauren has an MBA from Curtin University, a BSc in Biomedical Science and Molecular Biology from Murdoch University, and a Diploma of Human Resource Management from the Australian Institute of Management.