Leadership Team

Michael Laferrera


With more than nearly 30 years of experience in the healthcare industry on both the manufacturer and provider side of the business, Mike has led global and domestic teams within Pharma for J&J, Galderma and Barrier Therapeutics.

Over the last 13 years at J. Knipper and Company, Mike has served in several leadership roles, including CCO and COO, as well as President and COO of KnippeRx Inc. During this time, he and his team have built the largest sample management business in the industry today.

Mike has been publicly recognized by PharmaVOICE magazine as a Top 100 leader in the industry and has authored numerous white papers on pharmaceutical sampling and distribution. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Georgian Court University, a past President of the Flemington-Raritan Youth Basketball Association and serves as an executive member of the Healthcare Marketers Coalition. Mike received his BS from the University of Delaware, where he was also a recipient of the Presidential Achievement Award.

Frank McNicholas

Chief Financial Officer & Chief Operating Officer

Frank manages the financial resources and partners with the President/ CEO and executive team in guiding the organization. He oversees the company financials and accounting policy, manages the operations group and external business relationships, and directs the budget, audit, and tax functions. Frank has extensive experience in financial executive management, primarily in manufacturing and distribution operations. Frank is a Certified Public Accountant with membership in the AICPA and NJ State Society of CPA for over 25 years. He received a BA in Accounting and a minor in Economics at Seton Hall University.

Joe Schmadel

Chief Data Officer

Joe leads initiatives that identify emerging technologies and trends which enable Knipper to achieve its strategic plans. Joe works directly with Executive and Senior Level Management of both Knipper and its customers to identify opportunities for innovation and technical advancement. Joe is also responsible for Knipper’s internal and external information assets enabling enhanced reporting and analytics. Joe has more than 30 years of experience within the pharmaceutical, consumer goods, and financial services industries. He is a member of the CIO Council, CIO’s Without Borders, Microsoft Pharmaceutical Advisory Council, and the Research Board. Joe received an MBA in Finance and Economics from Fordham University, a BS in Management and Information Science from Rutgers University and has completed a post-graduate executive leadership program at Harvard University.

Rajeev Nair

Chief Information Officer

Rajeev guides Knipper’s IT strategy, and is responsible for the company’s client IT solutions, its product development strategy and customer experience. He leads a community of professionals whose work is central to the advancement of technology as a means to anticipate and fulfill the needs of our clients. Having provided technical leadership to a number of life science organizations including both pharmaceutical companies and turnkey service providers to the pharmaceutical industry, Rajeev has more than 25 years of experience in software development and in transforming large organizations’ SDLC processes. He has led IT enabled business transformation in a multitude of industries including Pharmaceutical, Biologics, Manufacturing, Financial Services and Consulting Industries through building comprehensive software platforms as well as evaluating and implementing provider supplied systems. Rajeev serves on the advisory board of TechImpact, a nonprofit organization providing technology support to other non-profits and helping young urban adults develop a career in IT. He received his MBA from the University of Tennessee and his undergraduate Bachelor of Technology from the University of Calicut, India.

Chris Dillon

General Manager, 3PL

Chris Dillon leads Knipper’s 3PL business division and is responsible for supporting clients as they manage through the complex healthcare landscape, developing a path to commercialization with a fully integrated logistics solution.

Chris has spent more than 30 years in the specialty biotech, pharmaceutical, and healthcare industries and has extensive experience with 3PL distribution, specialty distribution, specialty pharmacy, reimbursement, and HUB services.

He recently served as Senior Advisor for Precision Value and Health, a market access consulting firm where he led the manufacturer distribution practice. He developed distribution strategies and implementation plans for new and existing products.

Previously, Chris was Chief Commercial Officer for BDI Pharma, Inc. This privately held company distributes specialty biotherapeutic products and creates customized solutions tailored for the distribution and support needs of manufacturers, healthcare providers, and patients.

He also served as VP/GM Pharmaceutical & Biotech Specialty Solutions for Cardinal Health and VP/GM for McKesson Specialty. He provided strategic direction and operational oversight for the business areas that focused on providing specialty solutions for pharmaceutical and biotech manufacturers in these roles.

Chris also held multiple executive roles with Elsevier, Allscripts Misys Healthcare, and Johnson and Johnson. ​

Chris earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Ohio State University.

John Petrolino, J.D., LL.M

General Counsel

Mr. Petrolino is a pharmaceutical executive with twenty years’ experience in the industry. Prior to entering the pharmaceutical space, he began his career in telecommunications where he was a site leasing attorney for T-Mobile where he assisted in securing leases for telecommunications equipment as well as helping to secure zoning and planning board approvals for their location. Subsequently, he joined Novartis where he headed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Knowledge Team where he was responsible for managing a group of attorneys who were charged with educating the U.S. clinical team regarding the law’s ambit. He then joined Progenics Pharmaceuticals, of Tarrytown, NY, where he acted as the lead contract and regulatory attorney supporting the company in the development of various products. Mr. Petrolino joined Savient Pharmaceuticals in 2004 and subsequently spent the next 10 years in roles of increasing responsibility, culminating in his role as Chief Compliance Officer and VP, Deputy General Counsel. He joined DARA Therapeutics of Raleigh, NC, as their first General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer where he oversaw all legal and compliance operations of the publicly traded company. Mr. Petrolino spearheaded the acquisition of DARA by Midatech Pharma PLC, a publicly-traded U.K. company, where he served as the global General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer. Mr. Petrolino also acted as first chair counsel for the acquisition of the U.S. operations of Midatech by Barings, LLC, a private equity firm, which subsequently became Fortovia Therapeutics where he continued in his capacity as General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer. Mr. Petrolino holds his Bachelor’s in Economics from George Mason University in Fairfax, VA, his Juris Doctorate also from George Mason University School of Law in Arlington, VA, and a Masters of Law in Health Law from Seton Hall University in Newark, NJ. Mr. Petrolino is a member of the New Jersey Bar and lives in New Brunswick.