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Patient-Focused By putting patients first, these industry innovators are changing the dynamics of product messaging and communications.
Nadine Arevian McGowan Patient Ambassador Nadine McGowan was the manager of the boys’ wrestling team at her high school. Name: Nadine Arevian McGowan Current position: Executive VP, The Snow Companies Date and place of birth: December 1973; Boston Education: B.A., Pitzer College First Job: Scooped ice cream First Industry-related Job: Marketing coordinator, Rebif launch team, Serono Alternative profession: Yoga instructor Professional mentors: Brenda Snow and Corbin Wood Words to Live by: Keep calm and carry on Loyal. Competitive. Nadine McGowan has been instrumental in the success of The Snow Companies’ patient ambassador movement. By bringing the power of authentic patient stories to numerous clients in the pharmaceutical industry, she has helped change direct-to-patient communications in a big way. Her creativity, hard work, and determination are contagious. Ms. McGowan leads by example and provides constant encouragement and support. Her can-do attitude inspires all around her. More importantly, however, is the impact that she has on the patient ambassadors. Ms. McGowan is able to connect with them in a sincere way and bridge the gap between patients and pharmaceutical companies to help reach the common goal of bringing hope, inspiration, and support to those living with a chronic condition. Through a variety of unique initiatives, such as the patient mentor program, which she has developed and implemented in partnership with her clients, patient ambassadors share the importance of being their own healthcare advocates in a genuine way, which has been proven effective. Throughout her career, Ms. McGowan has worked tirelessly to refocus the industry’s marketing output on the patients’ perspective and to bring real patient stories to light. In doing so, she has helped spearhead numerous DTP marketing initiatives that effectively resonate with patient populations living with conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and breast cancer. As part of the team that created the MS LifeLines Patient Ambassador Program at Serono in 2002, Ms. McGowan was a strong champion of patient educational programs. Recognizing the power patient stories have to inspire and educate, Ms. McGowan chose to step outside the pharmaceutical industry to join The Snow Companies. Since then, she has been instrumental in further developing this innovative brand of DTP communication and increasing its reach across the industry. Ms. McGowan says she has the good fortune of meeting awe-inspiring people who live every day with debilitating and painful chronic diseases, and who do so with great courage and dignity. She is inspired by how they approach life with a positive attitude despite their conditions, and their example continually teaches her to do the same. Ms. McGowan directs interdisciplinary teams of account directors, program managers, writers, and marketing strategists, making sure patients are at the heart of every marketing initiative. Michael Alden Simone Spreading the Word Michael Simone is well-respected by his clients, employees, peers, management, and colleagues in the industry. He is a strategic marketer who never forgets the most important reason why he and his colleagues work in healthcare marketing: to help bring medicines to the patients who need them. Colleagues say this focus on patients sets Mr. Simone apart from many other executives in the industry. As executive VP at The Snow Companies, Mr. Simone is always willing to listen to his team members and he welcomes them to challenge his assumptions. He has worked on both sides of the business — client and agency — and excels in managing expectations for both. At one time, Mr. Simone was a client while at Serono working on the MS franchise. Today he finds himself in a role-reversal; he is now partnering with his former company to manage the MSLifeLines Ambassador Program. Mr. Simone continues to lead the charge on other programs, such as developing patient-centric resources and programs in epilepsy, and most recently launching ambassador programs for multiple myeloma and hepatitis C. He is constantly thinking of new and creative ways to make an impact. One of Mr. Simone’s true strengths is his ability to identify new and different business opportunities and foster their growth. Mr. Simone is passionate about every project, no matter how big or small. He sees every day as an opportunity and pushes himself and his team to reach new levels. Mike Simone shares uplifting messages about the disease categories he is working on, lends his expert opinion, and challenges his colleagues to think bigger and go the extra mile. Name: Michael Alden Simone current Position: Executive VP, The Snow Companies Date and place of birth: November 1973; Worcester, Mass. Education: B.S., Microbiology, University of Massachusetts first job: Sandwich maker first industry-related job: Avonex, customer support specialist, Biogen alternative profession: Proprietor of an Italian restaurant Professional mentors: Brenda Snow and Corbin Wood Awards: Serono CEO award; Serono President award words to live by: What you see is what you get Passionate. Tenacious. Nadine McGowan A Patient Voice Bringing the patients’ voice to life has always and continues to be Nadine McGowan’s priority as a leader in the DTP industry. At the beginning of her career, she worked tirelessly as a patient marketer in biotech companies and was instrumental in working with her teams to create platforms that successfully spoke to the patient experience in a challenging regulatory environment. Ms. McGowan’s passion for the patient led her to her current position as executive VP at The Snow Companies, where the patient is the heart and focus of the organization. In her role, she brings integrity and passion to her work with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the implementation of patient ambassador programs across a number of disease categories. Ms. McGowan impresses those around her with her ability to assess a disease category’s needs and the brand’s situation and come up with a strategic solution that meets all parties’ objectives. Whether it’s launching a first-of-its-kind phone-based mentor program to optimize treatment adherence, or an interactive Web event targeted at acquiring new prescriptions, she has a knack for maintaining a strategic focus with clients, partner agencies, and her Snow team members. Her leadership abilities allow her to manage the conflicting priorities of the various stakeholders in a way in that builds consensus, optimizes tactical outcomes, and ultimately provides top-notch solutions for the brand teams she services. She inspires her colleagues with her work ethic, foresight to identify potential problems, and resolve to produce a great outcome throughout difficult circumstances. Many count Ms. McGowan as a mentor, role model, and friend. Family: Husband, Peter; son, Declan, 2; daughter, Keira, 1 Hobbies: Yoga, hiking, snowboarding, and snowshoeing Reading List: Just Kids by Patti Smith; Quiet Leadership by David Rock Favorite Book: The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand Favorite Movie: The Departed Bucket List: Visit her grandmother’s homeland of Armenia; hike the Presidential Trail, White Mountains, N.H.; learn to ride a motorcycle Favorite Smartphone App: Facetime Time Travel: Back to Cairo in the 1950s to see firsthand how her mother grew up Getting Personal with Nadine McGowan Michael Simone • Thinking Bigger As executive VP at The Snow Companies, Mike Simone helps his clients to achieve their goals by providing strategic direction and innovative ideas to reach patients and deliver measurable results. He challenges his colleagues to think bigger and go the extra mile, truly showing his leadership and passion for the industry. He oversees a number of key projects in the United States and globally in Europe and Asia. Mr. Simone’s in-depth understanding of people living with chronic conditions and the challenges they face helps his team craft stories that both inspire and motivate action. He has a keen sense of the emotion inherent in each story. His ability to help his team tease out that emotion, is second to none. Also, he’s a master of brand messaging. He may not be a writer by trade, but that’s easy to forget when he makes an artful suggestion for seamlessly weaving a tricky piece of brand messaging into a story. Colleagues respect and trust him and are eager to learn from his experiences; his career is full of successes and revolutionary ideas. His voice permeates through the office, as he leads many initiatives. Mr. Simone not only places importance on the high-level projects he is leading, but values the minute details of every venture. Mr. Simone is a role model and colleagues say he exemplifies what it takes to thrive as a leader and expertly manages multiple teams. In addition to his commendable project management skills, he has been on the front lines for The Snow Companies, sharing the patient ambassador model to positively influence as many disease communities as possible. He consistently satisfies clients and peer agencies, and does it in such a way that it leaves his employees naturally following in his footsteps. Family: Wife, Diana; son, Joey, 7; daughter, Jenna, 4 Hobbies: Traveling, playing guitar, spending time with his family reading list: Decision Points by George Bush; Captain Underpants and the Wrath of the Wicked Wedgie Woman Favorite Book: Of Mice and Men Favorite movie: Goodfellas Bucket list: Running for public office; taking a world cruise; owning a boat; owning a summer house on Cape Cod Favorite Smartphone App: Angry Birds Most Unusual Place Visited: Pigeon Forge, Tenn. Life Lessons: Always be kind to the street sweeper, because you never know when you may need your street swept