Pfizer Taps Alphabet’s Verily, Chief Marketing Officer

Andreas “Drew” Panayiotou moved from Alphabet’s research company Verily to Pfizer as its new Global Chief Marketing Officer. At Verily, he was responsible for branding, B2B marketing, consumer marketing, corporate communications, digital marketing, marketing operations, and content. Panayiotou is an industry veteran with 30 years of experience as a marketing executive at giant corporations such as Coca-Cola, Chick-fil-A’s Red Wagon Ventures, Best Buy, Walt Disney, Hershey’s, Kodak, and Johnson & Johnson.

As Pfizer’s Global Chief Marketing Officer, Panayiotou, will build the company’s commercial infrastructure, which includes new engagement channels, tools, and digital solutions. Angela Hwang, head of Pfizer’s biopharmaceuticals unit, said in a LinkedIn post, “Drew’s insights and diverse thinking will help us elevate the cutting-edge customer channels, skills, and capabilities we need to deliver.”

Novartis Replaces R&D Head

The Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR) is adding Fiona Marshall, PhD, to their team as the new Institute President, effective this November. Jay Bradner, MD is leaving the position after seven years at Novartis. Previously, Dr. Marshall served as SVP and Head of Discovery Sciences, Preclinical Development, and Translational Medicine at Merck. Prior to her role at Merck, she was a Founder and Chief Scientific Officer at Heptares Therapeutics, which was bought by the Japanese pharma company, Sosei.

Dr. Marshall will be the third leader of the NIBR, heading over 5,600 colleagues. “I am very excited to join Novartis and lead the discovery teams who are renowned for their collaborative research and use of cutting-edge technologies,” she said in a statement.

Adial Pharmaceuticals

Cary J. Claiborne has been named President and Chief Executive Officer of Adial, the developer of therapies for treating and preventing addiction and related disorders. Claiborne was previously Chief Operating Officer of the company, and will draw on nearly 20 years of experience to drive Adial’s transition to commercialization.

Cigna Corporation

Cigna created the role of Chief Health Officer for David Brailer, MD, PhD who will be Executive Vice President, CHO. Dr. Brailer served as the first national coordinator for health information technology under President George W. Bush in 2004. He will now be trusted to revamp the company’s existing products, technologies, and services to improve the overall health of clients.

Elevar Therapeutics

Wade Smith joined the biopharma company as its Chief Financial Officer after spending eight months as Elevar’s lead of accounting and financial planning to prepare for commercialization of its drug pipeline, while also collaborating with the company’s executives on raising capital. Smith developed a team to implement internal controls and testing, improve financial analysis, and move the company to an enterprise resource planning environment.

Galera Therapeutics, Inc.

The company focused on developing novel therapeutics aimed at radiotherapy in cancer named Eugene P. Kennedy, MD, FACS as Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Kennedy will draw upon his experience in clinical trial development, regulatory strategy, and oncological medical experience to focus on the company’s submission of an NDA to the FDA for avasopasem by the end of the year.

InfanDx AG

The diagnostics company specializing in novel diagnostic solutions for newborns hired Nicole Witzmann as the new Chief Financial Officer. Witzmann brings eight years of experience in corporate finance in the healthcare industry, most recently serving as Head of Finance at Adrenomed AG. She will now be responsible for general administration, accounting, and controlling.


The agency is bolstering its leadership team with new additions Kristine Wobschall, Vice President of Client Experience, and Sonal Adhav, Senior Director of Medical Affairs. The pair are trusted to push forward agency best practices in the areas of client experience and medical strategy. Wobschall is responsible for client relationship management and overall business portfolio health and will lean into her strong digital background and passion for omnichannel strategy to solve client challenges. Medical communications veteran, Adhav, will contribute her 20 years of experience in medical education, pharma advertising, and scientific strategy to the comms team.

Klick Group

Google veteran Ryan Olohan has joined Klick as Executive Vice President, Growth. Olohan met the Klick team while serving as Managing Director of Healthcare at Google and will now be contributing to their success and momentum. He will use his industry experience to push teams to think bigger and be better.

Ocugen, Inc.

The biotech focused on discovering, developing, and commercializing novel gene and cell therapies and vaccines appointed Robert J. Hopkins, MD, MPH & TM, FACP, FIDSA as Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Hopkins has more than 25 years of experience as a physician and clinical researcher. In addition to his work in government organizations, he has held senior-level positions at Merck Research Labs, DynPort Vaccine Company, and Emergent BioSolutions.

Pleio, Inc.

The company dedicated to healthcare technology and medication support programs appointed Mark Gregory to the newly created position of Chief Pharmacy Officer. Gregory will be leading the company to achieve its goal of solving the multiple impacts that medication non-adherence has on human health through their unique patient engagement platform. The pharmacy veteran will be focused on working to grow and develop pharmacy and industry relationships and contributing to the evolution of Pleio-based programs.


The biotech developing oral recombinant vaccines named Ray Stapleton, PhD as its Chief Technology Officer. Dr. Stapleton has spent a 20-year career leading technical, quality, and manufacturing operations, which will help him guide the company as it delivers the next generation of oral vaccines that hold the promise of transforming how to fight infectious diseases globally.


Alphabet’s research unit has replaced Andreas Panayiotou with Alix Hart as the new Chief Marketing Officer. She brings in-depth experience from her previous role at software and hardware company Nvidia where she served as Global Head of Digital Marketing targeting growth across its gaming, enterprise artificial intelligence, healthcare, data center, and pro visualization segments. Her marketing career includes leadership at companies such as Time Inc., Dyson, and PepsiCo. Hart will take ownership of all brand, digital, and product marketing efforts as well as overall marketing operations at Verily.


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