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NACDS’ Retail Advisory Board tackles retail-supplier collaboration amid pandemic, gets vaccine update from GSK


The National Association of Chain Drug Stores' Retail Advisory Board met virtually on Tuesday, bringing together retailers and suppliers who confront priority industry issues and who advise the NACDS board of directors on consumer-goods topics.

“We would prefer to be together at NACDS Week in New York City, and we look forward to returning to irreplaceable meetings like that very soon,” said RAB chair Rick Brindle, vice president of industry development at Mondelez International. “Yet the engagement in events like this featuring senior-level NACDS member-company representatives delivers tremendous value as we address the important issues before our industry and nation.”

The board received an in-depth briefing from GSK about the status of COVID-19 vaccines and other vaccines. The discussion featured RAB vice chair Lisa Paley, general manager, U.S. and Puerto Rico, GSK Consumer Healthcare; Judy Stewart, senior vice president, vaccines business unit, GSK; Leonard Friedland, vice president, director, scientific affairs and public health, GSK Vaccines; and Kate Hashey, director, U.S. vaccine policy, GSK.

NACDS chair Rick Keyes, president and CEO of Meijer, spoke with the RAB members, and provided operational insights regarding COVID-19 from the retail perspective. He took the opportunity to recognize the crucial role of suppliers in managing supply-chain issues and other challenges, saying, “We are so appreciative of the partners who have stepped up to help us help our customers.”

Keyes noted the acceleration of digital within the company during the pandemic, and the role of suppliers in helping to ensure the success of related programs. He also emphasized Meijer’s focus on “enriching lives in the communities in which we serve,” including an increased focus on food security during the challenges of COVID-19.

NACDS president and CEO Steve Anderson reported to RAB members on the importance of chains’ and suppliers’ united efforts through NACDS during the pandemic. Because of the heroic work of NACDS members and their teams in service to consumers, communities, and the nation, Anderson said “We’re going into the golden age of what pharmacy is going to be in the future.”

Next up on the NACDS calendar is the latest edition of the NACDS LIVE webinar series, which will be held Dec. 9 from 11 a.m. to noon EST. “A Conversation with NACDS Leadership” will include Keyes, Anderson, and NACDS vice chair and treasurer Colleen Lindholz, president of Kroger Health.

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