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Kathy Giusti (born 1958) is the Founder and Executive Chairman of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) and the Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC). In 1995, following her diagnosis with multiple myeloma (MM) at the age of 37, Giusti discovered that there was no research at all going on to create drugs for MM. Together with her twin sister, she founded the MMRF to fund innovative myeloma research and drug discovery. Having raised more than $250 million to date, the MMRF is the world's number one funder of myeloma research. Its work has resulted in approval of six new drugs to treat the disease.
Giusti received her MBA in general management from Harvard Business School and graduated from the University of Vermont magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences. She began her career in 1980 with Merck & Co., and later joined the Gillette Company. In 1993, she joined G.D. Searle & Co., where she last served as Executive Director of Searle's worldwide arthritis franchise. She used her business background to run the MMRF like a business rather than a traditional medical charity; she employs full-time scientists to track MM research around the world and sets strict timelines and goals for researchers who receive foundation grants.
Giusti has received many awards for her innovative leadership. Most recently, she was ranked #19 on Fortune Magazine’s Worlds’ 50 Greatest Leaders and an Open Science Champion of Change by the White House. In 2011, she was named to the TIME 100 List of the world’s most influential people. She has also received the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Centennial Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the Harvard Business School Leadership Award, and the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association's Woman of the Year Award.
Giusti currently serves on the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, the Executive Management Committee of Stand Up to Cancer and the Harvard Business School Healthcare Advisory Board. She has previously served on several other boards, including the National Cancer Advisory Board, the Institute of Medicine's National Cancer Policy Board and the Board of Directors for IMS Health.