Duato named chairman at J&J (updated)

Jessica Perry//December 1, 2022//

Duato named chairman at J&J (updated)

Jessica Perry//December 1, 2022//

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Johnson & Johnson CEO Joaquin Duato started off 2022 stepping into that role, and in 2023, he’ll again begin a new year with new responsibilities.

Joaquin Duato, CEO, Johnson & Johnson

Alex Gorsky will step down from his role as executive chairman, the New Brunswick pharmaceutical giant announced Nov. 30, with Duato elected by the board to succeed him as chairman following a brief transition period.

The predecessor to Duato in the chief executive officer position, Gorsky announced he would leave that role in August 2021, while still maintaining his position as executive chairman. Gorsky is just one of seven people to have held the dual role of chairman of the board and CEO since the company was first listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1944, according to J&J.

He began his career with the company in 1988 as a sales representative with Janssen Pharmaceuticals, eventually being named to the top leadership posts in 2012.

“On behalf of the board of directors, I would like to thank Alex for his unwavering commitment to Johnson & Johnson. Over the last three decades, Alex’s influence has truly shaped the global health care landscape and improved billions of lives,” said Anne Mulcahy, lead independent director, in a statement.

Gorsky’s tenure brought one of the biggest shakeups in the company’s history, when it announced in November 2021 that it would split into two publicly traded companies. In a statement, he called leading J&J during “such a pivotal time” in its history the great privilege of his life.

Alex Gorsky, chairman and CEO, Johnson & Johnson.

“I would like to express my deep appreciation to every employee, past and present, for their steadfast commitment to bringing our Credo to life every day and to improving the well-being of those who rely on us,” Gorsky said. “It has been an honor to work alongside each of you, and I could not think of a better leader than Joaquin to lead the board as it helps guide the Company to even greater achievements.”

Duato has been with the company for more than 30 years, serving in senior leadership positions across multiple sectors, locations and functions.

“During Joaquin’s career with the Company, the board has witnessed firsthand his ability to effectively lead, collaborate, and create value for all our stakeholders,” Mulcahy said. “We have the utmost confidence that he will continue to be an excellent steward of the business and look forward to working closely with him in this next chapter.”

Along with committing to working with the board, the incoming chairman thanked Gorsky for his “countless contributions” to the company.

“He has inspired an entire generation of leaders with his passion for improving human health, built the best team in the industry and laid a strong foundation for the future of both Johnson & Johnson and Kenvue, the planned new Consumer Health company,” Duato said.

At the end of the third quarter, J&J reported sales growth of 1.9% to $23.8 billion.

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 4:34 p.m. ET Dec. 5 to include a more recent photo of Duato.