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Debra O'Brien

Global Head of Branding and Digital at Mylan


Debra O'Brien, Mylan's Global Head of Branding, is responsible for leveraging the power of branding to help the company fulfill its mission of setting new standards in health care and providing 7 billion people access to high quality medicine.

To this end, O'Brien leads a global team of marketing professionals and agency partners engaged in creating and implementing a global master brand architecture that is both strategic and meaningful. Among its hallmarks are the creative application of digital assets, mobilization of advocacy groups, involvement of the company's workforce as brand ambassadors and use of innovative global branding initiatives and services.

In addition, O'Brien's team is focused on achieving the perfect balance of global and local messaging and associated marketing support in the approximately 165 countries and territories Mylan serves, and on producing measurable gains in market position and revenue.

Further, she is playing an instrumental role in leading the organization's transformation from a pharmaceutical company to a healthcare company and in making Mylan a household name by sharing its story directly with consumers. As a part of these efforts, she launched in 2015 Mylan's first-ever global advertising campaign. Called Better health for a better worldTM, it demonstrates Mylan's commitment to 7B:1, or changing the world for the better, one person at a time.

O'Brien's efforts are setting Mylan apart – not only as a company, but also as a cause – an unusual feat, particularly in the generic pharmaceuticals space, whose participants traditionally have not aggressively marketed themselves or their products.

Mylan today is one of the global pharmaceutical industry's largest companies. It offers a growing portfolio of more than 1,400 generic and branded pharmaceuticals, including antiretroviral therapies on which nearly 50% of people being treated for HIV/AIDS in the developing world depend. Importantly, regardless of where it is produced, every one of the company's medications meets Mylan's one global quality standard.

Prior to Mylan, O'Brien was vice president, Global Marketing, at CIBA VISION Worldwide, a Novartis company. She established a vision for the category and executed fully integrated marketing, advertising and promotional efforts that led her portfolio to become the fastest growing lens franchise in the industry.

O'Brien earned a Bachelor of Science degree in economics from the University of North Carolina.