MSL Society Boston 2014 Brings Together Global Medical Affairs Community

Thought Leader Select recently supported the Medical Science Liaison Society’s Boston 2014, an event that brought together nearly 100 members of the global medical affairs community.  MSLs, regional managers and directors, and medical affairs executives from North America, South America, Europe, and Asia attended the MSL Society’s third global conference, hosted by Genzyme at the company’s global headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Thought Leader Select founder and President Paul Meade, global business consultant Allison Murphy, and Brian Castle, the company’s head of marketing attended the three-day event.  Boston 2014 included two major networking events, the opening reception at Genzyme headquarters, as well as a special dinner and tour at Boston’s Museum of Science.  Hosted by MSL Society Chairman Dr. Samuel Dyer and sponsored by Thought Leader Select, the dinner took place at the Museum’s spectacular venue overlooking the Charles River, providing a relaxed setting for socializing and networking for the group.  The dinner also featured the exclusive announcement of Thought Leader Select’s sustaining sponsorship of the MSL Society.

The educational portion of the conference took place on May 21-22 at Genzyme headquarters, featuring a distinguished panel of speakers representing almost every corner of the global medical affairs community. Bill Sybold, Senior Vice President of Medical Affairs and head of Genzyme’s multiple sclerosis business, welcomed attendees with a rousing keynote address.  Jim Fitt, President of MSL Society partner Velsoft, gave MSL Society members a preview of the organization’s new online training portal.

Other notable presenters from day one included Elizabeth Kupferer of Sequenom and Suzanne Giordano of Sunovion, who focused on creating new MSL teams and adjusting MSL teams for new markets.  Kumaran Krishan of Sanofi’s medical centre of excellence in Europe offered his company’s insights on key performance indicators for sustaining MSL success over long-term outreach and collaborative efforts. Ayse Olmez of Bayer Turkey discussed MSL coaching strategies, and Hudson Garrett of PDI highlighted the growing debate over global MSL certification.

The final day of the conference featured multiple areas of focus.  Richey Neuman of Teva outlined how his company has been successful in implementing multiple career pathways for MSLs. GSK’s Drilon Sailiu discussed the emerging medical affairs role within device companies.  Day three’s main area of focus, however, centered on the multiple ways that MSLs are evolving to meet the needs of their companies, patients, and the doctors with whom they collaborate.  Alexion’s Jaimee Reiley showed how MSLs continue to be resilient and effective in the face of near-constant regulatory and business environment changes.  Alexander Tolmachev of Takeda Russia offered his take on using survey methods to enhance MSL relations with medical thought leaders, while Maria Mabunay of Singapore’s Mundipharma spoke on virtual platforms used for various MSL functions.

“As a company committed to helping medical affairs professionals optimize relationships with thought leaders in the medical community, we are thrilled to be a part of the early success of the MSL Society,” stated Castle. “Samuel Dyer and the leadership group at the Society, notably Heliana Sula and Jeff Kraemer, have already achieved a standard of excellence in staging events full of first-class content. These events are also a perfect reflection of their personal warmth and true passion for connecting MSLs around the world to share best practices and help each other advance in their careers. The sky is truly the limit for an organization so devoted to its mission, and the large number of engaged attendees at the MSL Society’s third global event proves just that.”

For more information on joining the MSL Society and taking advantage of its great opportunities for networking and education, including its newly-launched jobs portal and training hub, visit the organization’s website at

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