Innovation and Corporate Citizenship in Extraordinary Times With Sally Susman

On this episode of the Capital for Good podcast, host Georgia Levenson Keohane speaks with Sally Susman, executive vice president and chief corporate affairs officer at Pfizer, about leadership, innovation, breakthroughs, and partnerships in these extraordinary times.

In this conversation, Sally Susman gives us insight into what it has been like to work at Pfizer — a company center stage in a global pandemic — developing, manufacturing, and rolling out the first vaccine approved by the FDA for Emergency Use Authorization in the United States in record time, balancing speed and urgency with scientific rigor and patient safety. Susman discusses how “breakthroughs beget breakthroughs” and how the last year has led to innovations in process (in drug development) and partnerships (with other companies and governments). We discuss the critical importance of trust — in science and in the biopharmaceutical industry more broadly — and how historic and current investments in health equity and access, in the United States and around the world, are essential. We also explore Pfizer’s role as a global and local citizen, including the company’s commitment to remain headquartered in New York City, and to rebuilding the city it has called home since its founding in 1849. We end with a discussion of Pfizer’s corporate values — courage, excellence, equity, and joy — and in particular the joy that has come from millions of people being vaccinated.

This episode was recorded on February 12, 2021. Therefore a few statements, such as Johnson & Johnson’s application to the FDA for Emergency Use Authorization, may be outdated.

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