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CVS Appoints Foulkes Retail CEO, Replacing Cosby

Helena Foulkes will assume the role of president CVS/pharmacy, effective January 1, 2014, the company announced. She succeeds Mark Cosby who had led the company’s Retail business since October 2011, the company reported.

Foulkes had been chief health care strategy and marketing officer responsible for corporate strategy and enterprise marketing, government relations and communications. In 24 years with the company, she has held key roles in merchandising, marketing and store operations, CVS noted, adding that she led the company’s work in transforming the digital experience for consumers in health care.

“Helena is an open-minded and forward-thinking strategist, who has developed a reputation for successfully building product and business model innovations that drive growth, and for bringing together thought leaders both inside and outside the company,” Larry Merlo, president and CEO of parent company CVS Caremark, said in announcing the leadership change. “Her industry track record includes leading innovations such as ExtraCare, the largest retail loyalty program in the country with approximately 70 million active cardholders. More recently, Helena has helped bring groundbreaking pharmacy health care programs to market, including Maintenance Choice and Pharmacy Advisor. She has held positions across the enterprise and understands how to meet the needs of both consumers and clients while delivering bottom line results. As health care continues to evolve, and we drive further differentiation through our integrated pharmacy model, we need a leader who truly understands the health care consumer and the opportunities we can deploy to attract and retain customers and generate strong, longer-term growth.”  

As president of CVS/pharmacy Foulkes will supervise a retail business that its more than 7,600 retail stores, 19 distribution centers and retail merchandising, supply chain, marketing, real estate, front store and pharmacy operations, the company related. Foulkes will maintain her responsibility for the company’s enterprise digital, brand and communications functions, CVS pointed out.

CVS gave no reason for Cosby’s departure.

Foulkes appointment is the company’s second executive move this month. On November 18, CVS announced that it had appointed Tracy Bahl executive vp/health plans. His previous experience includes a tenure at CIGNA Healthcare in a variety of regional and national health plan roles, and 10 years at UnitedHealth Group Inc., where he served as the CEO of the Uniprise division supervising the company’s national accounts, consumer health and financial services business, as well as service and technology operations. Most recently, Bahl worked for investment firm General Atlantic, supporting portfolio companies and investment activities as a health care team Special Advisor and executive chairman of health care information management firm Emdeon through its sale.