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Chief Science Officer

John D. York

Dr. John D. York joined Impossible Foods in January 2021 as Chief Science Officer. John oversees the company’s research and development and product innovation functions. His work focuses on building Impossible’s technology platform, expanding basic research capabilities, accelerating next-generation products, and recruiting the world’s best scientists to join the Impossible Foods team. 

From 2012 to 2020, John was the Chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Professor of Biochemistry at Vanderbilt University. There, John’s laboratory paved the way for discoveries in protein structure and function, cell signaling, and molecular genetics, and furthered our understanding of the pathophysiology of disease. Under his leadership as Department Head, the Department of Biochemistry became 2019’s top NIH-funded department in the nation and nearly doubled the number of trainees. 

Before joining Vanderbilt, John was an investigator for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Professor in Pharmacology and Biochemistry at Duke University, 

Throughout his career, John trained over 50 scientists in his laboratory and over 200 graduate students, post doctoral fellows, undergraduates and high-school students through thesis, departmental and community activities.

A Midwest native, John received his BS in Biochemistry from the University of Iowa and his Ph.D. in Molecular Cell Biology and Biochemistry from Washington University in Saint Louis. Outside of the lab, he enjoys spending time with his wife and two incredibly wonderful daughters, off-piste skiing, tennis, woodworking, building outdoor pizza ovens, cooking (more importantly, eating!), traveling and reading the news from a variety of intellectually rigorous sources.