As Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Albert Bourla leads Pfizer in its purpose, “breakthroughs that change patients’ lives”, with a focus on driving the scientific and commercial innovation needed to have a transformational impact on human health.
During his more than 25 years at Pfizer, Dr. Bourla has built a diverse and successful career. The global nature of his work – having lived and worked in eight different cities and led teams across five continents – has informed his understanding of the needs of patients and healthcare systems around the world and deepened his commitment to helping ensure equitable access to medicines and vaccines.
When he took the reins as chief executive officer in January 2019, Dr. Bourla accelerated Pfizer’s transformation to become a more science-driven, innovative company – divesting its consumer and off-patent products businesses and dramatically increasing its R&D and digital innovation budgets. To create a culture in which the company’s people and science could thrive, he and his leadership team established Pfizer’s Purpose Blueprint, which included four core values: courage, excellence, equity, and joy.
A powerful example of Pfizer’s capabilities and culture was seen in the company’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Refusing to accept public funding and instead investing more than $2 billion at-risk, Dr. Bourla inspired colleagues to deliver a safe and effective vaccine in just eight months – a process that typically take eight to ten years – without compromising quality or integrity. A year later Pfizer delivered the first FDA-authorized oral antiviral treatment for COVID-19 by implementing the same sense of urgency and new ways of working. The company is now applying many of these “lightspeed” principles to projects across a wide range of therapeutic areas, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammatory conditions, and more.