The year was 2013, Elizabeth Holmes was brokering an arrangement with her company for health technology Theranos along with Walgreens. The plan was to the Theranos Wellness Centers in Walgreens locations, so that customers could avail the benefits Theranos had promised that it could analyze an individual drop of blood with just a simple prick on the finger. Don’t worry about needles! In order to facilitate this partnership as well as any future agreements, Elizabeth hired her younger brother Christian.What did Christian Holmes do at Theranos? Christian graduated in 2011 from Duke University and was given the position as Associate Director of Product Management. The title sound amazing, but when viewed in a word-by-word manner, doesn’t make sense. In an excerpt from an deposition Christian took in 2017 in connection with the civil lawsuit filed from investors against Theranos and which is available in the Dropout podcast, Christian admitted that he was not even seeking an employment opportunity when he was in the process.
Maybe it was his informal approach to work that caused him to contact the members of his Delta Tau Delta fraternity brothers from Duke to find out whether they were really looking for an opportunity. There were at least six were and, later, they were referred to as Therabros. The name was given to the group from Mike Peditto from the Chiat/Day advertising agency, who was behind the rebranding of Theranos. Mike was closely associated with the Duke team during this time.
Therabros was the ideal name.
Evidently The Therabros did not work as hard and were very active, since they also shared the same house in what we call “The Surreal World.” One of the bros, Dan Edlin, was employed by Theranos over a period of five years from September 2011 until December 2016. In a deposition he made in connection with a civil lawsuit filed in 2018 against Theranos Dan claimed he joined the company as a senior product manager . He later became Elizabeth’s head of operations strategy.
In the early days of Therabos one of the major objectives of the Chiat/Day advertising agency was to get the brand-new Theranos website up and running. But, one of the biggest hurdles Mike encountered repeatedly was getting Theranos lawyers to accept the terms for the new site. Chiat/Day could be held accountable for any way in which Theranos misrepresented itself on its website, however, each time Mike tried to contact Dan, Christian, or any of the other Therabros his request was ignored. What was their motive? Who knows.
Dan was able to become quite comfortable Dan ended up becoming pretty friendly Elizabeth Holmes and her business/romantic partner, Sunny Balwani. “On some occasions, Elizabeth invited Christian and myself, and other members of the project management team to Sunny’s house for dinner,” Dan described in his deposition of 2018. Elizabeth attended a portion of the deposition, which was viewed by many as a tactic to intimidate from her side. The deposition only convinced lawyers representing the prosecutor that Dan could be more important than they originally thought.
Although Dan was a witness during Elizabeth’s trial. We aren’t sure whether Christian did, even though it seems that he did not. Actually, Christian has all but disappeared and isn’t believed to be with social media. In photographs of Holmes getting ready for her trial, she’s frequently seen with the hands that of spouse Billy Evans, as well as her father or mother. It seems Elizabeth’s brother didn’t go to the trial, or came in on his own.
Where is Christian Holmes? It’s another mystery in an already tense story.
Theranos creator Elizabeth Holmes’ brother Christian who she recruited as a senior manager for her company for blood testing and then employed a team of college buddies One of the friends appeared in court on Friday to testify at Holmes the criminal fraud trial.
Daniel Edlin told the jury that five of his friends who were friends of Christian Holmes’ from Duke University were appointed to be senior managers of product all at the same time in 2011 and two more. Edlin along with a few other Duke graduates ended up helping in the training of Walgreens drugstore employees to offer Theranos test services beginning in the latter half of 2013. Edlin admitted to the jury.
The program of training included teaching Walgreens employees on the ways in which Theranos technology can allow blood testing to be easier and more affordable and affordable. The trainees were taught they were told that “Theranos was an innovative Silicon Valley technology company,” Edlin said in testimony.
“The purpose,” he stated, “was to help the Walgreens employees become enthusiastic and be a part of the technology. Theranos education program designed for Walgreens employees also involved Theranos engineers and engineers, as well as Holmes personally approving certain aspects of the program, Edlin said in testimony.
Three years later, the agreement with Walgreens that saw the drugstore giant offered Theranos $100 million as “innovation fees” and invested an additional $40 million been dissolved after Walgreens in a lawsuit against Theranos and eventually negotiating the settlement.
Holmes established Theranos in 2003 at 19. The company is accused of allegedly defrauding investors out hundreds of millions dollars and defrauding doctors and patients by falsely claiming that their devices could perform a complete array of tests by using only the drop of blood. Holmes is accused of several felony fraud charges. She has denied guilt.
Edlin who was dressed in a navy suit with the dark-colored tie and with a bit of growing beard, explained to jurors at U.S. District Court in San Jose that he was assigned to assist in organizing excursions to Theranos’ Palo Alto headquarters for prospective investors, business partners and VIPs.
His job was to coordinate the setting up of the Theranos device in rooms to demonstrate them and testifying. He recounted a demonstration in 2013, just a few months before the launch of tests for patients at Walgreens in which Holmes requested for him to setup between 10 and 15 of Theranos “miniLab” blood-analyzer devices. The devices, Edlin said, were “powered up” for the visit. After three years, when he admitted to the court, he discovered that the miniLabs hadn’t been used for clinical tests.
To show another example, a Theranos program developer advised that the company make use of a “demo app” with the machines shown to the guests, which would guarantee that any alerts of processing issues would not be displayed on the device’s screens, as per an email shown inside the courtroom.
Edlin said to the jury that the jury that he was employed by Theranos between 2011 and the end of 2016, when he resigned to attend business school and because he no more thought “that the company was capable of standing behind the claims it was making about its technology.” The federal prosecutor John Bostic earlier in the trial claimed that Christian Holmes was hired at Theranos despite not having a formal education in medicine or science, in addition to making the clinical decision to authorize re-drawing blood samples for tests that had to be repeated. In an internal email from 2014 that was sent to jurors Christian Holmes wrote that “it appears that a redraw is required due to the degrading of cells.