President. Lilly USA, LLC

For the past five years, I have been the president of Lilly USA, LLC, the largest affiliate of global biopharmaceutical leader Eli Lilly and Company, producing almost half its global revenue. I directly supervise our men's health, women's health, neuroscience, immunology, cardiology, and Alzheimer's sales teams, as well as our U.S. marketing function, our sales and marketing services organizations, and our negotiations with health insurance plans to give patients affordable access to our medicines.

I entered healthcare largely by accident. After law school, I clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia and then joined a D.C. law firm. I went to work for my mentor Ken Starr immediately after he became the Whitewater independent counsel.

While at my law firm, Wiley, Rein & Fielding, I was active in the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2000. After Bush won, I received a call from the office of Tommy Thompson, Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services, asking me if I'd have interest in being General Counsel of HHS. I'll confess that I wrestled with the question, since I had not focused on health law in my legal career. Within 30 days of being at HHS, however—with a team of unbelievably talented and dedicated lawyers, the superb career leadership at the department, and the dynamic team around Secretary Thompson—I realized I had found my life's calling: to help people around the world live longer, healthier, and happier lives.

At the end of President Bush's first term, he and the new Secretary, Mike Leavitt, asked me to stay on as Deputy Secretary of HHS, the number two official and chief operating officer of the department. In that role, I learned my passion for leadership, decision-making, accountability, and results.

I am deeply grateful for the foundation Yale Law School gave me for my life in business leadership, public policy, and in healthcare. Yale taught me how to think deductively, empirically, and dispassionately and how to learn from others in a dialectic process I use today in my leadership teams. I learned from so many amazing professors, including Akhil Amar, George Priest, Bob Ellickson, and John Langbein, ways of looking at the world, thinking about the relation of our government to its citizens, and dealing with intractable issues. It’s now tremendously fulfilling to use those skills to contribute to healing people and improving their lives.