The ZBiotics Team

We're not just scientists. We're also musicians, artists, rugby players, cooks, surfers, woodworkers, rock climbers, and parents who care about enjoying life and doing good for the world at the same time.

Our Story

Our story begins over a decade ago, when now-CEO Zack Abbott was working at an HIV research lab. There, he had an idea: what if we could use genetic engineering to develop new probiotics – ones with specific, unique abilities to improve our daily lives?


Fast forward 7 years, a PhD in Microbiology & Immunology, and experience designing clinical trials, and Zack had what he needed to get started.

He founded ZBiotics in 2016, and today his vision has become a reality. ZBiotics launched the world’s 1st genetically engineered probiotic in 2019, and we haven’t looked back.


We live by a core set of
shared values: humanity, integrity,
citizenship, and science.

Each value is full of meaning, but we want to call out one in particular: Citizenship. It includes principles like diversity, equity, and inclusion. Principles that are core to who we are. Read more about diversity, equity, and inclusion at ZBiotics

Candace Cui

Director of Growth Marketing

Candace owns the day-to-day operation and optimization of core ZBiotics growth marketing programs. Candace holds a master’s degree in exhibition and museum studies from the San Francisco Art Institute, with a focus on digital audience engagement. Candace is also a published writer.

Zack Abbott, PhD

CEO, Co-founder

Zack is the inventor of our proprietary technology and sets the mission, vision, and values for ZBiotics. Zack has a PhD in microbiology & immunology from the University of Michigan and holds a bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley, where he double-majored in immunology and classical art & archaeology. Prior to starting ZBiotics, Zack worked in clinical trial design as well as researching HIV vaccines and pursuing novel antibiotics in both academia and industry.

Anna Lamb

Marketing Manager

Anna is a holistic marketer who primarily focuses on ZBiotics affiliate, partnership, and organic social media programs. Anna holds a bachelor of science in agricultural sciences with a concentration in viticulture & enology from Cornell University. Prior to joining the ZBiotics team, Anna was living and working for a winery outside of Santiago, Chile.

Michael Mullaney

Senior Director of Supply Chain

Michael runs the ZBiotics supply chain, from ingredient and packaging sourcing to contract execution and compliance. Michael holds a bachelor of applied science from Michigan State University. Before joining ZBiotics Michael led strategic sourcing and operation teams at Albertson, Melt, and Earthbound Farm.

Kat Townsend

VP of Marketing

Kat leads marketing at ZBiotics. Kat has a bachelor of science in product design from Stanford’s School of Engineering. Before joining ZBiotics, Kat built her professional career in video games, leading marketing teams and strategic vision on some of the industry’s most well-known brands, including Assassin’s Creed and Words With Friends.

Nicole Shahin

Customer Experience Associate

Nicole oversees everything within customer support and customer experience. She has a Bachelor of Science in Human Psychology from Florida State University, and over five years of experience in creating optimal customer environments, providing exceptional support, and optimizing customer interactions.

John W.K. Oliver, PhD

VP of Research & Development

John leads R&D at ZBiotics, with a focus on new product development. John has a PhD in organic chemistry with an emphasis in biotechnology from UC Davis. John was a postdoctoral scholar at Harvard Medical School and worked at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering on a multidisciplinary team working on engineering the human microbiome.

Savannah Hagenbaugh

Senior Technologist Food Safety and Quality

Savannah is responsible for developing and managing the food safety and quality programs at ZBiotics ensuring our customers receive consistently safe and wholesome products . She has a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Ashland University and more than 12 years of experience at companies like The J.M. Smucker Company, MillerCoors, and 3i Solutions.

Stephen Lamb

COO, Co-founder

Stephen oversees the operational, regulatory, and financial aspects of ZBiotics. Stephen holds a JD from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, an MBA from the Wharton School, and a bachelor’s degree in political economy from Princeton. Prior to ZBiotics, Stephen's career focused on corporate real estate and new market entry for companies like Ben & Jerry's, Pfizer, and Unilever.

Carol Trevino

Supply Chain Buyer/Planner

Carol oversees the Supply Chain details and challenges at ZBiotics. With 10 years of experience in Supply and Demand, she is in charge of getting the inventory levels balanced so we can have ZBiotics always on stock. Carol holds a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from ESUMER University and an MBA with Finance and Value Chain Management Specialization from the University of Illinois.

Rob Ryan

Marketing Operations Associate

Rob is a budding growth marketer who focuses on ZBiotics landing pages and marketing analytics and performance among other responsibilities. Originally from Long Island, NY, Rob works remotely from Chicago, IL and attended the University of Notre Dame for his undergraduate degree in IT Management. Prior to joining Team ZB, Rob worked at a variety of other startups in industries like mental health and auto insurance. He is a music-head and loves David Bowie in particular.

Michael Richardson

Marketing Creative Lead

Michael manages & develops creative from in-house to customer facing design. Michael holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts with honors in Graphic Design from ArtCenter College of Design. Prior to joining the ZBiotics team Michael led creative for; technology, health & wellness, CPG and the cannabis space.

Jaime Newsome

Customer Experience Associate

Jaime is a dedicated customer support professional with more than a decade of experience, who prides herself in providing a high-level of support with every interaction. Jaime has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from North Carolina State University. Her previous experience in various support roles has provided her with the skills necessary to empathize with customers’ needs and resolve their issues with the utmost care and concern.

Valerie Ryan

Scientist, Research & Development

Valerie is responsible for executing ZBiotics research and the day to day operation and management of the ZBiotics Research Facility. Valerie has MS in molecular microbiology with a focus on engineered probiotics from Purdue University. Prior to ZBiotics, Valerie spent the last five years generating probiotic bacterial vaccines at Elanco Animal Health and BiomEdit.

Todd Jones

Director of Ecommerce & Digital Experience

Todd is a data-obsessed product leader who is responsible for optimizing the ZBiotics customer experience. He has a Bachelors of Psychology from The University of Tennessee and his affinity for spreadsheets is balanced by a history of hospitality. Prior to ZBiotics he worked with Michelin starred restaurants around the world and led new product launches at Ventura Spirits distillery.

We’re Always Looking for Passionate People

We’re a team of deep thinkers who care about the future of the world and the role of science in that future. Sound like you? Check out our Careers page. We’re growing.