Blog: A Look into Being a CDMO Program Manager: Colleague Spotlight on Dakota Bolt

03rd April 2024

Dakota Bolt is a seasoned Program Manager at our bioconjugation development and cGMP manufacturing facility in Bristol, PA. His passion for biomedical engineering, sparked by his Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) degree, led him to his current role at Abzena, where he oversees customer programs involving antibody-drug conjunction, R&D chemistry and process development. Abzena’s innovative approach and leading-edge in the antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) space caught his eye when looking for a new career opportunity, and he’s been a key player in driving high-quality programs for the organization ever since.

A typical day for Dakota involves a blend of data analysis, inter-departmental meetings and customer communication. It’s a balancing act that involves managing current and upcoming projects’ financial and administrative strings to ensure that customer programs stay on track and to budget.

“A program manager truly acts as an extension of our customer’s team.  Not only are we the eyes and ears inside the CDMO, we are also proactive problem solvers.  We are always looking ahead in order to ensure a smooth and successful project delivery for our customers,” states Dakota

But Dakota’s role isn’t just about keeping the gears turning smoothly. He emphasizes the necessity of patience and a well-organized approach, are attributes he considers crucial in his day-to-day work.

Dakota shares, “This role has been a whirlwind of learning and growth. The caliber of expertise here at Abzena is unmatched. You’re at the forefront, adapting to scientific and business shifts and pushing medicine forward.”

Beyond the office, Dakota is all about embracing the great outdoors. Whether running, fishing, or hitting the slopes at Revelstoke in BC, Canada, he knows the value of recharging in nature.

Behind the Scenes with a Program Manager

The essence of program management at Abzena revolves around tackling time-sensitive demands and orchestrating the intricate backstage activities essential to our biological and bioconjugate services. Transparency is a cornerstone of our approach, guiding our project management philosophy to embrace new ideas and meet our customers’ needs head-on.

A Closer Look at Dakota’s Responsibilities:

  • Integrating the complexities of integrated development, chemistry, bioconjugation development, and manufacturing programs, Dakota ensures everything aligns with Abzena’s mission and values.
  • He’s in charge of planning, scheduling, and budgeting for all CMC-related product/process developments, driving innovations and improvements across the board.
  • Engaging with customers, Dakota adeptly handles changes in project scope, generates change orders, and manages adjacent sales efforts

Considering a Career with Us?

If Dakota’s journey resonates with you and you have a similar passion for making a difference in the biologics and bioconjugates space, we would love to hear from you. We value expertise in life sciences and engineering and a proven track record in project management, especially in the realms of small molecules, biologics, or antibody-drug conjugates.

We invite you to share your CV with us through the Abzena Careers Portal. Together, we can continue to innovate and lead in the industry, one project at a time.