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ED, Consumer Communications and E-marketing, Wyeth
MOST RECENT HIT: Launched birth control pill Lybrel
ADDED VALUE: "Best Practices" brainiac
I saw firsthand the impact that disease can have on the person who has the disease, but also on the family," says Nancy Phelan. Her sister was often hospitalized with seer asthma, and not until Theo-Dur hit the market could she live a "normal" life. When it came to a career choice, Phelan chose pharma—Schering-Plough, the maker of Theo-Dur. After her field service, she rose fast into management, helping to take the allergy med Claritin over the counter. Winging it to Wyeth, she now helps with marketing strategy and best practices for all pharmaceutical brands. Phelan has a reputation for taking ethics as seriously as sales—a distinction for which she credits her industry mentors. "If you compromise once, you're going to compromise again," she says. As for her generation of new leaders, she says, "There does seem to be a new openness to new solutions, and an optimism that we can actually lead the change in healthcare, rather than only reacting once that happens."