Ralph E. Christoffersen

Ralph E. Christoffersen

Title: 1) Founding Partner, 2) General Partner
Company: 1) Lightstone Ventures, 2) Morgenthaler Ventures
Location: Boulder, Colorado, United States

Ralph E. Christoffersen, Ph.D., Founding Partner at Lightstone Ventures and General Partner at Morgenthaler Ventures, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Doctors for dedication, achievements, and leadership in the chemistry industry.

Dr. Christoffersen commenced his career as an assistant, associate and full professor of chemistry at the University of Kansas between 1966 and 1981. During this time, he also served as the assistant vice chancellor for academic affairs for one year, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs for three years, and vice chancellor for academic affairs for two years. Briefly serving a stint as the president of Colorado State University in the early 1980s, he subsequently served the Upjohn Company in multiple capacities, including as the executive director, vice president of biotechnology and basic research support, and vice president of discovery research between 1983 and 1989.

More recently, Dr. Christoffersen served as vice president and senior vice president of research at SmithKline Beecham for a total of three years, as well as chief executive officer and president of Ribozyme Pharmacy, Inc., for nearly a decade. Since 2001, he has been the general partner of Morgenthaler Ventures, having also been the founding partner of Lightstone Ventures since 2012. In addition, he has served on the boards of Elcelyx Pharmaceutical, Tragara Pharmaceutical and Nimbus Pharmaceuticals.

Dr. Christoffersen holds a Bachelor of Science from Cornell College and a Doctor of Philosophy from Indiana University. After gaining prominence in the field, he received an honorary doctorate from Cornell College in 1983. Throughout his career, he has contributed more than 100 peer-reviewed publications to professional journals and maintained membership with the Colorado Bio-Science Association, Phi Lambda Upsilon and Sigma Xi, where he is also a fellow.

In recognition of his exceptional contributions to chemistry, Dr. Christoffersen was named a fellow of the National Institutes of Health from 1962 to 1963 and again from 1964 to 1966, as well as the recipient of the Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship from 1971 to 1973. Named International Society of Quantum Biology Outstanding Researcher of the Year in 1981, he received the W.E. Upjohn Award for biotechnology contributions in 1988 and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Colorado Bio-Science Association in 2013. Most recently, he earned the Leadership and Service Award from Cornell College in 2014 and the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award from Marquis Who’s Who in 2018.

Featured in multiple editions of Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, and Who’s Who in the West, Dr. Christoffersen has been married to Barbara Hibbard since 1961 and is the proud father of two children and four grandchildren.

For more information, please visit:

Lifetime Achievement

Press Release

Industry Leaders Feature

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