Frank Stokes

Chief Financial Officer, Castle Biosciences, Inc.

Frank Stokes

CFO – Castle Biosciences, Inc.

The position of finance organizations has evolved over time to become true strategic cornerstones of organizational performance as companies pivot to address complex global market conditions and shifting regulatory environments. These complicated financial landscapes require highly skilled financial leaders who can help stabilize the financial system, promote growth, and drive the interests and performance of their companies forward.


Frank Stokes, the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Castle Biosciences, Inc., is a prominent example of this requirement for financial competency in company leaders. His energetic leadership style, combined with his passion and keen financial expertise, highlight the critical role that skilled financial professionals can play in the success of their companies. Castle Biosciences, a company dedicated to advancing health with cutting-edge diagnostic technologies, understands that realizing its goals requires a strong financial leader like Frank Stokes.

From the Scratch

For as long as Frank can recall, he aspired to become a lawyer, with an interest in practicing securities or litigation law as he approached law school. However, approximately three weeks into his legal studies, he came to the realization that the legal profession wasn’t his true calling. What truly captivated him was the business side of the law. Consequently, after completing law school, Frank pursued an MBA, discovering his forte in finance and developing a genuine affinity for banking.


When questioned about early aspirations of becoming a Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Frank clarified that his ambitions have always reached higher. During his MBA journey, Frank received invaluable guidance from generous professors, particularly one who emphasized the importance of focusing on personal priorities, steering clear of comparisons with others, or dwelling on the past. This mentor’s unwavering confidence in Frank’s abilities and encouragement to “make it happen” proved instrumental not only during graduate school, but also in shaping Frank’s trajectory beyond academia.

Journey towards Castle Biosciences

Having known Derek Maetzold, Castle’s CEO, for several years, the company was a familiar entity to Frank. He held a consistent enthusiasm for the opportunities Castle was actively pursuing. In the realm of developing diagnostic tests, Frank offered a notable perspective on two distinct approaches. The conventional method that most companies pursue involves building a tool first, akin to a hammer, and then seeking applications for it. However, he highlighted the potential pitfalls of this approach, emphasizing that without a specific need (or “nail”) in mind, technologies might struggle to find practical applications. The alternative, and in Frank’s view, the more successful method, is to first identify a specific clinical need and then develop the corresponding diagnostic tool, akin to building the hammer for a known nail. This was precisely the approach adopted by Castle Biosciences, as they had identified a clinical need and then meticulously developed the necessary tool to address that need.


Despite the challenges involved in such an approach, Frank had confidence that with Derek’s leadership and Castle’s strategic methodology, the company would achieve success. As a banker at the time, Frank actively pursued a relationship with Castle, anticipating their eventual move to go public. And in 2017, after transitioning from banking to working for a startup, Frank was approached by Derek. Castle was considering going public, and the board recommended Frank to assist in this significant step. The timing was perfect, leading Frank to join Castle Biosciences in December 2017. Almost exactly two years later, Frank successfully stewarded Castle through its IPO, marking a crowning achievement in his career.

As the CFO

Frank and his team’s philosophy is to treat the rest of the organization as their clients, and themselves as a key service provider to the company. His team aims for inconspicuousness, since a well-run financial department should ideally not be noticeable, unless it’s to provide accolades for hard work. The ultimate objective is to provide smooth, efficient service that meets the demands of all parties involved through precise and flawless execution.


Reflecting on the strategic decisions made by Castle’s leadership during the challenging circumstances of 2020, Frank commented that the company took a proactive approach in planning for the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. His finance team, under this forward-thinking strategy, diligently secured enough capital to execute the company’s business plan, irrespective of the external macro environment. This foresight proved to be exceptionally rewarding, as Castle continued to lead and grow the company during a time when other companies were making significant cutbacks in programs and/or staff.

Knowing Frank Stokes

Frank prioritizes his mental and physical well-being by maintaining a consistent exercise routine, emphasizing that regular workouts contribute not only to his focus, but also to his overall longevity. Beyond fitness, Frank has a passion for scuba diving, although his opportunities to participate in this activity have diminished over time. Additionally, about a year and a half ago, he rekindled a childhood interest by taking up guitar lessons. Acknowledging the challenges this may pose for his guitar teacher, Frank finds immense joy in playing again.


Despite the demanding cycles of work, Frank prioritizes his family above all else. As such, he ensures that staffing and management decisions are based on maintaining a healthy work-life balance and actively managing the inevitable fluctuations in cyclical work demands. Admittedly, achieving this balance is not always straightforward, but driven by the significance of family in his life, Frank strives to create a work environment that allows everyone the necessary time to focus on their personal priorities.


Looking ahead, Frank envisions Castle Biosciences continuing to grow and evolve in significant ways, with the goal that its diagnostic tests become standard-of-care in the disease states they address. A demonstrated effectiveness of the Castle commercial playbook across its dermatology, gastroenterology, and mental health franchises reinforces his conviction that the company’s trajectory is not a question of if, but when.

Castle Biosciences, Inc.


Frank Stokes
Chief Financial Officer


At Castle, it all comes down to people. After all, disease doesn’t just happen — it happens to people. We believe that disease management and treatment decisions can be better informed through a person’s unique biology, which is revealed through the scientific rigor of our innovative tests. We are committed to empowering healthcare providers and patients with the goal of improved outcomes.

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