Eli Lilly's head of bio-medicines to step down, general counsel to retire

Eli Lilly said Thursday that Christi Shaw will step down from her position as president of Lilly Bio-Medicines at the end of August and will be succeeded by Patrik Jonsson, who is currently general manager of the drugmaker's Japanese unit. The news was followed shortly afterward by Gilead Sciences saying it has appointed Shaw as CEO of its Kite unit. Meanwhile, Eli Lilly added that general counsel Mike Harrington will also retire at the end of the year, with the company's shares dropping as much as 4% Thursday.  

CEO David Ricks noted that during Shaw's time in the role, "our bio-medicines division launched multiple new medicines globally, such as Olumiant (baricitinib) and Emgality (galcanezumab-gnlm), and added key development projects to our early and late phase portfolio." Shaw returned to Eli Lilly in 2017 after serving as president of Novartis USA and North American region head of Novartis Oncology. In addition to prior experience at Eli Lilly, Shaw also held various positions at Johnson & Johnson.

Meanwhile, Jonsson has held his current role since 2014, having joined Eli Lilly in 1990 and serving as general manager for a number of markets, including Sweden, Scandinavia and Italy. Ricks described Jonsson as "a patient-focused, inclusive leader who has a long track record of delivering results in numerous markets around the world," adding "with a portfolio of newly launched medicines and a robust pipeline in both immunology and pain, he is the right person to lead our Bio-Medicines business."  

Eli Lilly also indicated that it has initiated a search for Harrington's successor. Harrington, who joined the drugmaker in 1991, served in various capacities including deputy general counsel of global pharmaceutical operations before being named general counsel in 2012.

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