Gilead hired Merdad Parsey as CMO, filling a position that has been vacant for over a year at a company that has seen several high level departures since Chairman and CEO Daniel O'Day took the helm this year.
Parsey will succeed Andrew Cheng, who stepped down as CMO in September 2018 to join NASH company Akero Therapeutics Inc. (Cambridge, Mass.) as president and CEO.
Parsey, who will join Gilead Sciences Inc. (NASDAQ:GILD) in early November, has served as SVP, early clinical development for the Genentech Research and Early Development (gRED) group. He joined the Roche (SIX:ROG; OTCQX:RHHBY) unit in 2006 as a senior group medical director and left in 2010 for a five-year stint as CEO of liver disease and cancer company Sagimet Biosciences Inc. (formerly 3-V Biosciences). He rejoined Genentech in 2015. William Lee, Gilead’s EVP of research, will separately report to O’Day.
Parsey is O'Day's second senior leadership hire amid several departures. At least six of Gilead’s 10-person senior management team have announced their intent to leave since March. CSO John McHutchison, Chief Patient Officer Gregg Alton and EVP of Human Resources Katie Watson have each stepped down; former EVP of Oncology Therapeutics Alessandro Riva left to become CEO of the innovation business at Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (NSE:GLENMARK; BSE:532296); Laura Hamill left in May, nine months after joining Gilead as EVP of worldwide commercial operations; and Robin Washington will retire from her position as EVP and CFO on March 1, 2020 (see "Gilead CSO McHutchison, Two Others, Out as O'Day Reshapes his Team").
Gilead hired Christi Shaw in July as CEO of the Kite Pharma Inc. unit. She was an SVP at Eli Lilly and Co. (NYSE:LLY) and president of Lilly Bio-Medicines.