2010 Deirdre P. Connelly
Deirdre Connelly announced as 2010 Woman of the Year
The Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) announced Deirdre P. Connelly as its 2010 Woman of the Year. Recognized for three consecutive years by Fortune magazine as one of the 50 most powerful women in business, Ms. Connelly is a respected leader in healthcare whose intense commitment to the patient has long driven her to foster innovation within the pharmaceutical industry.
“I am deeply honored to be named Woman of the Year by the HBA,” said Ms. Connelly. “I have not only been fortunate to have mentors throughout my own career but have also experienced firsthand the HBA’s commitment to develop and inspire female executives in healthcare.”
While the HBA annually receives many compelling nominations for the WOTY award, the 2010 HBA nominating committee overwhelmingly agreed that Ms. Connelly’s many accomplishments embodied the criteria for Woman of the Year, which includes success in the healthcare industry, strong leadership capabilities, proven mentoring skills, dedication, a commitment to giving back to women, and contributions to the community. Described by others as an approachable and engaged leader, Ms. Connelly is widely recognized by her colleagues as a passionate advocate for mentoring and continuous learning.
“The HBA is extremely proud to honor Deirdre Connelly as our 2010 Woman of the Year, and we are inspired by her visionary capabilities in setting a clear path for success in a changing marketplace," said HBA chair emeritus, Susan Torroella. "In addition to her numerous career accomplishments, Ms. Connelly’s values of commitment to patients, integrity, transparency and respect are widely heralded among all who know her. Women leaders like Ms. Connelly serve as role models for all women in the healthcare industry, demonstrating first-hand the contributions we can all make to society.”
At the time of this award Ms. Connelly was president of North America Pharmaceuticals for GlaxoSmithKline, where she led an organization of approximately 10,000 employees and over $14 billion in sales. As part of her responsibilities, she helps shape the future of the company as a member of its global corporate executive team and co-chairs its research portfolio management board. Prior to joining GlaxoSmithKline, Ms. Connelly spent 24 years with Eli Lilly and Company, where she served as president of Lilly USA. She held a variety of executive positions at the company, including senior vice president of human resources for Eli Lilly and Company, vice president of human resources for pharmaceutical operations, executive director of global marketing for Evista, and leader of the U.S. women’s health business unit. She began her career in the pharmaceutical industry in 1984 as a sales representative for Lilly in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where she was born.
“Deirdre has a deep commitment to the patient, the customer, and the values that are absolutely necessary for our future,” said Andrew Witty, chief executive officer of GlaxoSmithKline. “The healthcare world is rapidly changing and our industry will continue to operate effective only if we gain society’s trust. Since joining us, Deirdre has established a strong strategic vision for the U.S. market and has created a culture of performance while operating within a framework of integrity, respect and transparency. She not only talks about these values, she is a leader who lives these values and cultivates them in others.”
In 2008, Ms. Connelly was appointed to the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships, a prestigious program that grooms young professionals for work in public service. She also serves as a member of the board of directors of Macy’s Inc.
Read Deirdre's Woman of the Year speech.
About the HBA
The Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) is a global nonprofit organization serving a community women and men in leading life sciences, biotech, pharmaceutical and supporting companies. The HBA has nearly 120 Corporate Partners and nearly 8,000 members served by more than 20 chapters and affiliates across the U.S. and Europe.