Executive Vice-President, North America Skills and experience: Ruud was appointed Executive Vice-President, North America in August 2016 and is responsible for driving growth and maximising contribution of the commercial operations in North America to AstraZeneca’s global business. Ruud joined AstraZeneca in 1997 and has held various senior commercial and leadership roles. Most recently, Ruud was Executive Vice-President, Europe and oversaw business functions in the 28 EU member states. Ruud was also responsible for the development of our late-stage, small molecule antibiotic pipeline as well as its global commercialisation. Prior to that, Ruud was Regional Vice-President of AstraZeneca’s European, Middle East and African division, Regional Vice-President for the Asia Pacific region and Interim Executive Vice-President, GPPS. Ruud was a member of the Board and Executive Committee of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) and was previously Chairman of the Asia division of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America. Holding a doctorate in immunology from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands, Ruud began his career as a scientist, researching in the field of immunology and ageing.