Jessica Jirash Gebara Inspired by Opportunity to Help Grow Gilead’s Presence in Mexico
Jessica Jirash Gebara
General Manager, Gilead Mexico
Location: Mexico City, Mexico
Joined Gilead: February 2022
As the General Manager of our Mexico affiliate, Jessica Jirash Gebara is responsible for driving the company’s strategy in the country, engaging employees and helping increase access to Gilead’s medicines. Read about her perspective as a woman leader with two decades of industry experience and learn what inspired her to help expand our presence in Mexico.
Q: What drew you to your field and how did you come to work at Gilead?
I joined the pharmaceutical industry more than 20 years ago while I was still in my last year at university. I started in commercial and took on roles of increasing responsibility until I eventually became the General Manager of another company’s affiliate in Ecuador and later in Chile. From the very beginning, I felt passionate about how our industry can help positively change the lives of patients and caregivers.
After working for several pharma companies, I was attracted to Gilead because of the company’s mission, strong portfolio, clear strategy for enabling access to its medicines and robust pipeline in oncology. I’m excited to help continue to grow Gilead’s presence in Mexico and increase access to our existing therapies, while preparing our affiliate to offer treatment options in oncology and other new therapeutic areas.
Q: How would you describe the company’s culture?
Gilead is a very agile company, with clear strategic objectives that are transparently communicated at all levels of the organization. I’ve also been impressed with how the company’s Core Values, Leadership Commitments, and commitment to ethics and compliance are embedded across the organization and demonstrated every day by my colleagues.
Another key component of our culture is providing avenues and resources for career growth. Gilead is a company very much focused on people, with a strategic focus on talent development and commitment to supporting individual development plans.
Q: Tell us about your most memorable day at Gilead. What made it special?
The first in-person townhall meeting we had when I started with Gilead Mexico was really special – for me as a new leader, and for all of us given everything we’ve been through during the pandemic. It was amazing to be in each other’s presence and feel the positive energy and high level of engagement from our team members here.
Q: What do the company’s efforts to prioritize equity, inclusion and diversity mean to you?
Today, I can’t imagine being part of a company that doesn’t prioritize equity, diversity and inclusion in its culture, and Gilead does this exceptionally well, both internally with employees and externally in the communities we serve. Focusing on these as key pillars of all we do makes Gilead a better employer and partner and is important to helping achieve our vision of creating a healthier world for all people.
Q: Can you reflect on your experience and motivations as a woman leader in the pharmaceutical industry?
Since I started in this industry two decades ago, it’s been encouraging to see an increase in the number of women in leadership roles, which is the result of continuous efforts and collaboration from society, governments, companies, female employees and allies. I think it’s important to reflect on all we’ve accomplished while acknowledging that we still have a long way to go to achieve full gender equity. I’m proud that Gilead advocates for pay equity and has a global salary ratio for men to women of 99.98:100.
As a woman and the first woman General Manager of Gilead Mexico, I see myself as having a personal responsibility to enable ways to strengthen our culture of diversity. I want to lead by example, develop and manage a high-performing team, and help empower my female colleagues to achieve their career ambitions. And I’m not alone in this – people across Gilead share these commitments, which is one of many reasons this is an inspiring place to work.
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