JR is a former Silicon Valley tech executive who realized that transformational solutions to mental illness and addiction might lie in psychedelic medicines. He spent 2 years researching and began personally investing in psychedelic research through his investment company. JR partnered with drug development veteran Stephen Hurst to start Mindmed in 2019, assembling a leading clinical drug discovery and development team with vast experience conducting clinical trials and research on drug candidates derived from psychedelics. Before starting Mindmed, JR worked in market expansion and operations at Uber. After leaving Uber, he was backed by the Silicon Valley tech accelerator Y Combinator for his company Upgraded. Upgraded is partnered with Apple to provide device financing for Apple customers in Europe.