HBA’s 2011: Rising Stars


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These high-potential women, who ­represent all facets and ­disciplines of the ­life-sciences industry, are being ­recognized by their companies for:

Significantly contributing to their organizations.
Exemplifying true leadership and acting as a role model for others.
Assisting those in subordinate or peer positions and being a team player.
Exhibiting dedication to the healthcare industry.
Being a shining example of “top talent” in their organizations.

HBA’s 2011 Leaders

The 2011 HBA Rising Stars
Valerie Acito, Global Head Human Resources, Oncology Global Development & Global Medical Affairs Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. Through her leadership, passion, work ethic, and relentless focus on providing solutions, ­Valerie is a well-respected role model across ­Novartis.
Cindy Afshari, Scientific Executive Director, Amgen Inc.
Cindy is a role model of the Amgen values, demonstrates exceptional judgment, and is thoughtful in all her interactions and decisions.
Miriam Alonso, Director, Meetings Management, Health and Wellness Partners
Miriam exemplifies customer service, which is a key element to our success. She takes on new challenges daily in this ever changing ­environment.
Cheryl Moody Bartel, Associate Director, R&D, Life Technologies
A highly capable R&D leader, Cheryl manages multidisciplinary teams, driving innovative product development.
Michelle Jordan Basler, Associate Director, Clinical Operations, Quintiles
Since joining Quintiles in 1999, Michelle has quickly become a Rising Star within the ­company.
Lisa Berdan, Assistant Director, Cardiovascular Megatrials, Duke Clinical Research Institute
Lisa is the essential element that draws ­together academic leadership, global ­collaboration, and operational excellence in support of DCRI’s large pragmatic clinical trials.
Laura Blair, Senior Director, Business Development, PSKW
As solutions-oriented thinker, Laura has ­created many programs to address the ever increasing difficulty in healthcare professional access.
Gwen Bland, Senior Sales Consultant, AdvantageMS
Gwen’s leadership and commitment to her clients have made her integral to the growth of our business and a Rising Star.
Beth Brannan, VP, Global Regulatory Affairs, Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Beth is a distinguished leader and plays a ­critical role in Watson’s ability to bring new and distinctive pharmaceutical products to patients around the world.
Heidi Burton, Senior National Sales Director, Lundbeck Inc.
Through tenacity, focus, and a sense of personal accountability, Heidi has brought a strategic approach to redefining Lundbeck’s specialty sales model.
Stacy Busking, Account Supervisor, Siren Interactive
Stacy has a unique ability to build trust through her sense of humor, honesty, ­integrity, and keen listening skills.
Carla Calizaire, Regional Business, Director, Mid-Atlantic ­Region, Novo Nordisk Inc.
Carla has been featured in a Working Mothers magazine cover story and was recognized by Essence Magazine as a woman of inspiration.
Nami Choe, Partner, Senior Director, Consulting, Ogilvy CommonHealth Worldwide
Nami is driven, focused, and passionate about her work, our clients, and the business of healthcare. She is one to watch, the embodiment of a Rising Star in our industry.
Chrissy Cianci, Director, Software Development and Data Management, Group DCA
Chrissy is the best kind of leader, combing the passion of purpose with a strong, yet humble, guiding hand.
Sharlene Cirillo, Senior Director Oncology Marketing, GlaxoSmithKline
Sharlene is being recognized because of her ­passion for oncology patients and her positive impact within the oncology team.
Jennifer Colapietro, Partner, PwC
Jennifer’s enthusiasm and energy have ­catapulted her as a mentor and role model within PwC for many aspiring women.
Kathryn DeMott, Managing Editor, Internal Medicine News, Elsevier Medical Information LLC
Kathryn is a mentor to new editors and reporters, sharing her news sense, editorial skills, and enterprise.
Michelle Dennison, Senior Counsel, AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP
Michelle is a role model to her colleagues and actively works to build best practices. She is a talented attorney, leader, and truly a Rising Star.
Stephanie DeViteri, VP, Account Director, Tonic Life Communications, a Huntsworth Health Company
As Tonic’s Rising Star, Stephanie encompasses all the qualities one looks for in a colleague, employee, agency partner, and friend.
Karen DiSanto, Senior Director, Human Resources, Ferring Pharmaceuticals
Karen’s broad understanding of our business has allowed her to contribute beyond the role of human resources expert. She is not only a star to us but to others as well.
Meghan DuBois, Business Process Owner, Internationals, Johnson & Johnson Healthcare Systems Inc.
Meghan has been a champion of mentoring and pioneered the application of a model that ­leverages a web-enabled service to maximize reach, facilitate connections, and accelerate ­development.
Amy Duguay,?Ph.D., Senior VP, Medical Director, Precept Medical Communications, Sudler & Hennessey
Clients and colleagues view Amy as a valued partner, strong leader, mentor, and now, an HBA Rising Star.
Anna Maria Echeverri, Senior VP, Management Supervisor, LLNS
Anna Maria is a valued partner to clients and a strong role model for younger staff. While we wish there were more Anna Marias, we are pleased to have the one-and-only working with us.
Sonja Foster-Storch, Managing Director, HealthEd
Sunny is a mentor, a born leader, and without a doubt HealthEd’s Rising Star.
Nidel Gandara, Director, Client Services, PDI Inc.
As a leader, Nidel invests time coaching and mentoring colleagues and sharing her ­organizational and industry knowledge and experience. She is truly a Rising Star.
Donna Garrod, Senior VP, Director of Integrated Services, Publicis Healthcare Communications Group
Donna’s passion for operational excellence and her strong experience managing ­multidisciplinary teams have made her a ­Rising Star within the PHCG.
Heather Gervais, VP, Client Services, Epocrates
Heather is a dynamic leader focused on ­building high-performance teams and ­developing talented people.
Kathy Goetz, Managing Director, Minneapolis Region, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp.
Kathy is a role model to her colleagues, and she ­offers the right balance of vision, optimism, and execution.
Cori Annapolen Goldberg, Senior Associate, Fulbright & Jaworski LLP
Cori has proven to be a strong advocate for clients, focusing her practice on compliance and regulatory matters affecting the healthcare ­industry.
Carolyn Gorelick, VP, Group Account Supervisor, RCW Group
Colleagues and clients alike praise her tireless work ethic, critical thinking, and, most ­importantly, her grace under pressure. Simply put, Carolyn is a born leader.
Susan Graf, Global Head Strategic Evaluation and Due Diligence, Roche
Susan is accountable for the business, scientific, and technical assessment for licensing and ­acquisition deals.
Sandra Gulbicki, VP, Strategic Planning, Torre Lazur McCann
Sandra symbolizes the core values of TLM; she’s igniting, courageous, and certainly tenacious.
Tara Harding, Senior Director, Sales Operations, SDI Health LLC
Tara is an innovative problem solver who has had a consistently positive impact on all areas of SDI, from sales to finance to customer operations.
Evaleen Minez Harris, Operations Manager, Flashpoint Medica
Evaleen exudes enthusiasm and energy and has a real ability to bring everyone together and boost morale.
Rekha Hemrajani, VP, Business Development, Exelixis Inc.
Rekha is a strong leader and mentor — she has both strategic vision and solid execution.
Christa Heydt, Global Systems Lead, Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development LLC
Christa truly embodies the spirit of the Women’s Leadership Initiative at J&J. She is a collaborator and a ­catalyst for women’s leadership.
Leigh Householder, VP, Digital Strategist, GSW Worldwide
Leigh’s overt passion as a problem solver, her dedication, and a tireless work ethic make her a leadership example, the epitome of a Rising Star.
Amy Howard, Account Director, Palio
Amy’s incredible work ethic, dedication to her team, drive to succeed, and exemplary ­leadership make her a Rising Star.
Sheri Humphrey, Global Franchise Leader, Merck
Sheri’s inspirational leadership, drive toward business results, strong support of diverse ­people and thoughts, and respect from her colleagues make her a Rising Star.
Stacey Irving, Senior Director, Channel Marketing, McKesson Patient Relationship Solutions
Stacey is an admired leader who works ­alongside her team and industry stakeholders to further the goal of improving medication adherence.
Angela Jackson, Editorial Manager, Special Projects, VisionCare Group, Wolters Kluwer Pharma Solutions
Angela has generated a brighter spotlight on our unique position in the marketplace, where she has impressed clients with her meticulous attention to detail and can-do attitude.
Marina Jean, M.D., Managing Partner, Director of Strategic and Scientific Services, AgencyRx LLC
As an internal leader, Marina has built up, and expanded the capabilities of the strategic services group of AgencyRx.
Melanie Jenter, VP, Group Account Director, Saatchi & Saatchi Healthcare Innovations
Melanie’s intelligence, drive, and leadership make her an invaluable member of the team.
Sarah Kaps, Senior Director, Digital Project Management, GA Communication Group
Sarah exemplifies the ‘GA Way.’ She is a ­trusted, reliable, and dedicated team leader who is invaluable to our agency’s success.
Kimberly Kellermann, Flow Operations, Executive Director, Boehringer Ingelheim USA Corp.
Kim exemplifies transformational leadership qualities in all she does. Her pride, passion, professionalism, and commitment are ­contagious.
Lisa Kerber, Senior VP, Global Pharma Solutions, IMS Health, US
Lisa has been a role model and top performer in every position she has been in at IMS from practice area leader to VP.
Linda Ketchum, Senior VP, Associate Creative Director, Copy, RosettaWishbone
Linda is a rare talent who combines strategic vision, scientific fluency, and creative flair in one compelling package.
Marni Kirousis, VP, Finance, Genzyme Multiple Sclerosis and Transplant/Oncology, Genzyme Corp.
Marni provides invaluable judgment concerning both direction and execution for Genzyme’s businesses with good humor and a can-do approach.
Jesse Klein, VP, Strategy, Motivation Mechanics
“No Risk No Reward” is Jesse’s mantra. There is no challenge that she deems insurmountable.  She’s not just a Rising Star, she’s a Super Star.
Janet Koch, Director, Sales Representative Development, Purdue Pharma LP
In addition to training and developing more than 500 representatives, Janet mentors ­talented women in the sales force and has helped recruit many into the home office.
Jeana Konstantakopoulos, Senior Project Manager, Big Communications
Jeana truly exemplifies passion, leadership, and dedication. She is a role model for her team and our Rising Star.
Jessica Labita, Marketing Communications Manager and Product Manager, QPharma Inc.
With more than 10 years of experience, Jessica is well-respected by her peers and is considered a team player who will mentor less experienced personnel.
Stacy Mecham Lally, M.Ed., Account Director, Business Development, ImpactRx Inc.
Stacy displays exemplary leadership qualities and a commitment to advance the service levels and insights we provide clients. She continually steps up to new challenges and has excelled in her new role as account director.
Maribeth Landwehr, Director, Corporate Communications, Astellas Pharma US Inc.
Maribeth is a trusted adviser to her staff and leaders around Astellas; she is a role model of how to live the company’s corporate values.
Anne LaPrade, Account Director, Kantar Health
Anne’s can-do attitude has made her a trusted advisor to clients and colleagues; she is sought after for insight, opinion, and comment. Anne is indeed a Rising Star and emerging leader.
Ann Lee-Karlon, Ph.d., VP, Portfolio Management and Operations, Genentech Research and Early ­Development (gRED), Genentech Inc.
Ann combines scientific knowledge with ­business acumen, and always remains patient-focused. She is a role model and mentor not only to women but to all aspiring leaders.
Loretta Lenzke, Senior Manager, Advisory Services, Ernst & Young LLP
Guided by her sharp business acumen, Loretta helps life-sciences stakeholders think through and develop innovative approaches that advance strategies and achieve operational ­excellence.
Wendy Levine, Senior VP, Group Account Director, The CementBloc
Wendy constantly looks for new challenges and opportunities and has become an indispensible partner to her client and brand teams.
Rhonda Levinson, Client Services Director, Publicis Touchpoint Solutions Inc.
Rhonda has emerged as a true leader and role model and she brings extraordinary passion and leadership to every program in which she works.
Karen Lewis, Director Human Resources, Cardiovascular Metabolics, Bristol-Myers Squibb
Karen has had remarkable results in ­improving team effectiveness and developing and implementing a talent and organizational strategy.
Debbie Limones, Senior Practice Executive, Campbell Alliance
Always a team player, Debi is a valued mentor and coach to many of her colleagues.
Nancy Logue, Director, Human Resources, Compas Inc.
Nancy’s dedication to her colleagues and our ­organization’s success makes her a true Rising Star.
Julie Mann, Regional Sales Director, ADHD Sales, Shire Pharmaceuticals
Julie is an accomplished leader who pours an endless supply of energy and passion into ­developing her people to achieve higher performance.
Karen Massey, State Manager, Arizona (RBU West), Pfizer Inc.
Karen’s enthusiastic and engaging leadership style, commitment to innovation, and ­exceptional business acumen were the driving forces behind many of her successes in U.S. ­primary care last year.
Anna McClain, Media Account Supervisor, Communications Media Inc. (CMI)
Anna’s responsiveness, attention to detail, and commitment to producing strategic, channel-neutral media plans guarantee client satisfaction.
Lorraine McClain, Director, Corporate Quality Systems, Cephalon Inc.
Lorraine is a shining example of rational ­leadership and a role model within Cephalon. She leads with competence and professionalism.
Susie McFadden, Regional Manager, Millennium Pharmaceuticals: The Takeda ­Oncology Company
Susie commands respect from her team and is warm and appreciative of her team’s strengths. She is an exceptional leader with an authentic personal style that inspires others.
Laura McKeaveney, Head Human Resources Reg. Europe, Novartis Pharma AG
Laura’s integrity, openness, strong work ethic, and sense of humor are just a few reasons why she is our Rising Star.
Shuet Moy, Senior VP, Group Account Director, Medicus Life Brands
With an eye toward the future in healthcare ­communications, Shuet’s enthusiasm to take on new challenges is always inspiring.
Kimberly Nau, Senior Brand Manager, One A Day, Bayer HealthCare, Consumer Care
Kimberly’s major role in developing and ­communicating the strategic direction for the Women’s Leadership Initiative and in attracting top talent through MBA recruiting, epitomize her Rising Star status.
Meredith Nocilla, Director, Account Services, Dowden Health Media
Meredith has risen rapidly through a succession of posts of increasing responsibility, and now she oversees the formulation and implementation of strategy for some of the ­medical-communications agency’s most ­important accounts.
Cynthia North, Consumer Marketing Director, Bayer HealthCare
Cynthia has demonstrated pioneering ­leadership at both the commercial and ­organizational level.
Kana Odawara, Chief Financial Officer, Stryker Japan, Stryker Corp.
Kana is dedicated to developing her team for future leadership at Stryker, and she motivates through optimism.
Carolyn Lamborn O’Neill, Senior VP, Group Creative Director, Copy, The CDM Group
Carolyn is an exceptional manager and mentor, inspiring new writers and colleagues alike. She is a Star to us.
Susan Ostrowski, Senior Director, Marketing and Sales, DSM Pharmaceutical Products
Susan is a leader who energizes her team to achieve challenging performance goals while delivering best-in-class custom manufacturing services.
Cindy Otterman, VP, Support Services, Cegedim Relationship Management
Cindy contributes her wisdom, innovative ideas and straightforward approach to the ­process of making decisions regarding company direction.
Cathy Pagano, President, Institute for Continuing Healthcare ­Education, a Vox Medica Company
Cathy exudes a dynamic and contagious can-do attitude. She engages internally and ­externally as a leader focused on educational imperatives to improve patient care.
Jill Petrie, Copy Editor, Cramer
Jill leads by example; she is thoughtful, ­­­professional, and thorough in all her endeavors. She supports and encourages all those around her.
Kelly Price, Senior VP, Oncology Business Unit, The Planning Shop International
Kelly’s passion for oncology and ­exuberant ­interface with clients has facilitated a Star performance.
Linda Richardson, VP, Multaq Marketing, Sanofi-Aventis
Linda is a role model known for her natural ability to connect with individuals and foster development at all levels. Creativity and passion are key attributes that contribute to her ability to build a high-performing team.
Jennifer Robeson, Area Director, Managed Markets, Daiichi Sankyo Inc.
Jennifer’s dynamic, charismatic leadership and her strong commitment to innovation and ­excellence contribute to her success as a highly valued colleague at Daiichi Sankyo.
Julie Robinson, VP, Group Account Supervisor, Brand Chemist, Grey Healthcare Group
Julie is a shining example of grace, poise, warmth, and intelligence. She is a friend, a mentor, a colleague and a Star in every sense of the word.
Allison May Rosen, Chandler Chicco Companies
Allison is recognized by clients and colleagues alike for her smarts, leadership, and passion for her work.
Aileen Rubio, Ph.D., Senior Scientist II, In Vitro Biology, Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Aileen is recognized by colleagues inside and outside of Cubist as a strong leader, pivotal ­collaborator, team player, and ­outstanding role model.
Tammy Ryerson, Client Services Director, Segmedica
Tammy’s ability to connect with clients and her enthusiasm and dedication have proven to be ­invaluable to the growth of our business.
Jessica Schutz, VP, Account Director, Saatchi & Saatchi Wellness
Jessica’s intelligence, tenacity, and productivity are examples for us all, but what we ­treasure is her contagiously friendly ­persona.
Jess Seilheimer, Senior VP, Digital Strategy & Planning, Euro RSCG Life MetaMax NY, Havas Worldwide Health
Jess exemplifies “creative isn’t a department; it’s a mindset.” She’s been pushing digital boundaries before arriving at MetaMax.
Aarti Shah, Ph.D., VP, Global Statistical Sciences & Advanced ­Analytics, Eli Lilly and Company
Aarti leads by example — staffing and ­developing a diverse team, fostering a ­transparent culture, and sharing personal ­triumphs to inspire others.
Andrea Heslin Smiley, President, VMS Inc.
Andrea is a visionary whose endless energy and charisma, coupled with her healthcare ­knowledge and prowess, inspire others to achieve at the highest level.
Shannyn Smith, VP, Management Supervisor, ProHealth, a division of Draftfcb Healthcare
Always willing to take on new challenges with poise and grace, Shannyn exemplifies the ­definition of a Rising Star.
Pamela Stephenson, VP, Marketing Excellence & TVR Launch, Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Pamela’s strong work ethic has been crucial while leading key initiatives to support the ­potential launch of Vertex’s new medicine known as telaprevir.
Jennifer Strassburger, Senior VP, Group Strategy Director, Saatchi & Saatchi Health Communications — New York
Jennifer has a unique ability to empathize with clients’ needs and bring ­strategic ­solutions.
Liz Stueck, VP, JBK Associates Inc.
Liz is passionate about mentoring and leading others while driving results with grace, ­enthusiasm, and professionalism.
Ashley Tappan, Client Development, Insigniam Performance
Ashley’s professionalism and passion for her work are immediately obvious to anyone she meets. Building relationships of trust and mutual value are just two of her strengths.
Lori Tierney, VP, Commercial Innovation & Customer ­Solutions, Endo Pharmaceuticals
Lori plays an active part in shaping the future of the company by motivating, encouraging, and rewarding individuals for their commitment and ongoing efforts.
Jessica Tilak, Senior Director, Clinical Data Operations, ­Systems & Standards, Celgene Corp.
Jessica has led cross-functional teams to ­implement technology and process ­improvements resulting in efficiency and ­effectiveness gains across Celgene’s clinical studies.
Jenny Diaz Tonos, Art Supervisor, CAHG
Jenny is an extraordinary leader and global activist for issues of importance to women. She has helped change the world through volunteer efforts focused on issues affecting women, ­including poverty and education.
Ivanka Toudjarska, Ph.D., Senior Scientist, Research, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Through her unrelenting passion, ­expertise and broad scientific knowledge in RNAi, Iva has pioneered and led important discoveries in the field.
Jill Ulam, Senior Human Resources Manager, Medex Global Solutions
Jill exemplifies Medex Global Solutions’ core value of customer service. She plans ­strategically and implements impeccably and enables Medex to be a market leader.
Shelly Weitz, Account Director, MicroMass Communications, Inc.
Shelly personifies leadership. She’s always a ­resource for her clients. Shelly is a shining light in our agency, and a Rising Star in this industry.
Allison Widlitz, Associate Director, Corporate Affairs, Actelion Pharmaceuticals US Inc.
Allison is a results-driven ­individual who ­exemplifies Actelion’s core values of open ­communication, teamwork, and innovation.
Joan Wildermuth, Group Creative Director, Senior VP, Juice Pharma Worldwide
Joan has infused the agency with her ­extraordinary talent, leadership skills and ­effusive personality, setting the standards for both creative excellence and a warm ­interpersonal culture.
Meredith Wilson, VP, Group Account Supervisor, Phase Five Communications
Meredith is a superb manager and mentor who makes juggling an art form. She’s bright, ­results-driven, and consistently helps us achieve our goals, while continuing to remain ­customer- and quality-focused.
Elyse Winer, Manager, Vynamic
Elyse applies her strong work ethic and easy going demeanor to lead both strategic and ­operational initiatives.