Gary M. Reedy has dedicated his life to improving the health of people around the globe. He took that vision to the American Cancer Society, Inc., when he became chief executive officer in April 2015, but his work with the organization began more than 15 years ago, when he first became a volunteer leader with the organization.
As the leader of the only global nonprofit organization attacking cancer from every angle, Gary has a unique platform from which to ignite the movement to save lives, celebrate lives, and lead the fight for a world without cancer. He has a laser focus on continuing the progress against cancer, refining volunteer and customer experiences, expanding stewardship and engagement, leading innovation, and improving access to care. Under his leadership, the organization has set a historic goal to double its annual research funding to approximately $240 million by 2021. This increase aims to dramatically grow what is already the largest and arguably most successful nonprofit research program in the nation.
As a volunteer leader and cancer survivor, Gary has leveraged his firsthand experiences to transform the organization to better deliver on its lifesaving mission. He is a past chair of the American Cancer Society’s volunteer Board of Directors and past chair of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network SM (ACS CAN) Board. Gary also led the organization’s Board advisory committee on transformation, a pivotal effort for the organization. He first joined the American Cancer Society in 2000 as a member of the Board of Trustees of the former American Cancer Society Foundation. In recognition of his service, in 2014 Gary was elected as an Honorary Life Member of the organization.
Prior to taking the helm of the American Cancer Society, Gary had a distinguished 37-year career as a healthcare business and advocacy leader, most recently as worldwide vice president, government affairs and policy, at Johnson & Johnson, where he spearheaded initiatives to influence global health policy. He previously devoted more than 25 years of his career to the business side of the industry, including senior leadership positions with SmithKline Beecham, Centocor, and Johnson & Johnson. During his tenure at Johnson & Johnson, Gary served as president of Ortho Biotech, a Johnson & Johnson company with annual revenues of more than $3 billion.
Gary’s nonprofit experience includes current board appointments for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the Tobacco-Free Kids Action Fund, the National Health Council, Research America, and Emory & Henry College. He is an active member of the Georgia Tech Advisory Board and the Atlanta Rotary Club, previously served on the C-Change board of directors, and was a charter member of the CEO Roundtable on Cancer.
Gary is a graduate of Emory & Henry College and holds an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Arcadia University. He and his wife, Cindy, live in Atlanta, Georgia, and are the parents of two adult daughters, Katie and Stephanie.