David Lipman, Impossible Foods
David Lipman will join Impossible Foods as chief science officer.

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – Impossible Foods, a manufacturer of plant-based food products, announced the appointment of David Lipman, director of the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), as the company’s chief science officer.

In his new role, Lipman will oversee research and development, and information technology. He will join the company in late May and report directly to Impossible Foods CEO and Founder Patrick Brown, M.D., Ph.D.

Lipman has led the NBCI as it built a world-class research program in influenza evolution and molecular evolution of the genome and proteome, the company said. NCBI, which is part of the National Institutes of Health, is used by more than 4 million people who download more than 100 terabytes of data every day.

Additionally, Lipman has worked closely with the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Food and Drug Agency and US Dept. of Agriculture. He is credited with helping to develop a system for applying whole genome sequencing for the surveillance and detection of foodborne pathogens, significantly boosting the speed of detecting outbreaks of foodborne disease.

Lipman received his undergraduate degree from Brown Univ. and his M.D. in 1980 from the Univ. at Buffalo, The State Univ. of New York. Before college, he worked in his family's butcher shop in Rochester, New York, starting at age seven sweeping the floors and eventually tending chickens and cutting meat.

“David has contributed more than any other scientist in the world to building the infrastructure and tools that made genome sequences an enabling resource for discoveries that have transformed biology and medicine," Brown said. “He will make an immediate, positive contribution to Impossible Foods’ leadership team — and become an inspirational role model to our growing team of world-class scientists.”