Medicines Australia has appointed UK-based Milton Catelin as its new CEO after an eight month recruitment process.
Mr Catelin will return to Australia and start with the association on 3 October.
“I am honoured to be appointed as the CEO of Medicines Australia which represents such an important part of the Australian health sector,” said Mr Catelin.
“Medicines Australia plays such a crucial role in advocacy and policy development to ensure that the Australian community has fast, affordable access to the latest innovative medicines and vaccines.”
Mr Catelin is currently chief executive of London-based International Public Affairs, which describes itself as an international corporate and government advisory practice specialising in public affairs, advocacy and strategy, with particular expertise in environment and energy.
He previously served as CEO of the World Coal Association, which is also London-based, from 2005 to 2014.
Mr Catelin is an Australian, educated at the ANU and University of Queensland, and worked in the Department of the Environment and Heritage untill 2002, after which he left Australia to work at the Geneva-based United Nations Environment Programme. He previously worked in a number of government roles.
“Milton Catelin is a fantastic appointment for Medicines Australia and on behalf of the members I congratulate him for taking on this important role for the innovative medicines industry,” said the association's Chair and Boehringer Ingelheim managing director, Wes Cook
“I am confident Milton’s leadership of Medicines Australia will add further strength to our industry and benefit the patients we serve.”
He told BiotechDispatch, "This was a very thorough and extensive process which uncovered some very high calibre candidates.
"The fact such a group of candidates applied is testament to this industry and to Medicines Australia's reputation.
"By taking such a lengthy and considered approach the Board was able to find the right candidate not just the best one available at any given time.
"It has also allowed the Board and interim CEO Lee Hill to focus on the important work of reviewing MA.
"This means Milton will be taking charge of a much stronger MA so he can focus on what the CEO of an industry body should and that's representing the interests of members and the wider community on how to ensure all Australia's get access to innovative medicines and that the community can realise all the economic and social benefits of a strong local industry."
Mr Catelin will succeed Lee Hil, who has served in the role on an interim basis since January following the departure of Tim James. Mr Hill, who has led a strategic review of the organisation, will remain with the association beyond the end of October.
Mr Catelin joins at a pivotal time for the research-based sector, with the association still rebuilding after last year's negotiation of the PBS Access and Sustainability Package. It also comes as companies prepare for full implementation of enhanced transparency requirements under its Code of Conduct.