Diversity Leadership: Christi Shaw, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

Christi Shaw

U.S. Country Head,

President of Novartis Corporation and

President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

As President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Christi Shaw oversees 27,000 employees across six divisions. She spearheads the U.S. company’s general medicines and corporate operations including site management, public affairs, government relations and social responsibility.

Roughly 60 percent of Shaw’s direct reports are women. “If you were to enter a room where I was ‘leading’ a meeting, you might not be able to tell who was actually in charge,” she told DiversityInc CEO Luke Visconti. “That’s because I believe that everyone has a voice—and at the end of the day, it’s a team and I’m a team member.”

Shaw joined Novartis in July 2010 as North America Region Head, Novartis Oncology, where she was responsible for all medical, commercial and staff throughout the U.S. and Canada. Under her direction, the oncology unit launched new chemical entities and new indications. She also developed the “Signature” clinical-trial recruitment program, which expedites the delivery of drugs to cancer patients.

Before joining Novartis, Shaw spent eight years at Johnson & Johnson, where she served as Vice President of New Business Development and Strategic Analytics for J&J’s Ethicon subsidiary and Vice President of Worldwide Marketing for Ethicon Products. She also held numerous leadership roles at Janssen Pharmaceuticals in psychiatry, women’s health and pediatrics.

Raised in Iowa, Shaw’s family owns several local farms that work to promote sustainability and conservation. She serves on the board of the Biotechnology Industry Organization, the Healthcare Leadership Council and the Young Women’s Leadership Network.

Shaw received a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University and an MBA from the University of Wisconsin. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and son.

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