Celebrating 10 years of HBA Europe | HBA

Celebrating 10 years of HBA Europe

The year getting ready
It all started mid 2006 in a meeting with some of the brightest female executive minds in the industry.

We’d met to consider how to create a network of successful female leaders and ultimately identify the incredible impact this could have on the wider landscape by giving us the opportunity to share our experiences, mentor and support each other and shape inspiring stories from our community. The affiliate started with a few meetings in Switzerland and progressed to regular programming in many countries in very a short period of time.

HBA Europe would like to recognize the role of Novartis as the primary sponsor in the infancy of the chapter.

Amy Rojas, Florence Manger, Friederike Sommer, among others, all mentored by Daria Blackwell, rose to the challenge to lead this idea from conception to reality. With no specific knowledge in the area, we set about building our community spurred on by belief in ourselves that we would make it happen and the empowerment and trust from our sponsor.
A crucial year to lay the foundations for what was to come...We introduced the HBA Europe affiliate at an event called “Unleash your potential” in Luzern, Switzerland. Hugely successful with 120 participants from 40 companies and seven countries, this meeting was our major achievement.
The year we were officially recognized as a chapter. After months of sleepless nights and busier days, we developed from scratch a specific non-for-profit business structure, built a team of amazing volunteers, identified a driving board, developed a vision and strategic objectives, conceived events and installed a number of marketing and communication activities. All for the very first time in Europe with many countries and even more languages.
The 2007 board of directors included:

  • Acting president: Florence Manger
  • Acting Past president: Daria Blackwell
  • President-elect and treasurer: Florence Manger
  • Secretary: Julie Ellis
  • Director at large, membership: Barbara Gerber
  • Director at large, marketing: Diana Barkley
  • Director at large, program facilitation: Friederike Sommer
  • Director at large, senior advisory: Helen Clarkson
  • Director at large, public relations: Jo Filshie
  • Director at large, corporate sponsorship: Florence Manger

Later in the year, it was time to Introduce the HBA Europe chapter to a wider leadership audience and together with the INSEAD leadership team, the ”Healthcare 2020” meeting was born: a three-day event in Fontainebleau, France. With this we reached another major milestone and confidence continued to grow throughout our community.

At this point we were all hugely motivated and rapidly growing with no intention of slowing down. We met and partnered with many and wonderful leaders, welcomed anyone who came to us with new ideas and passion for what they do. Doing this enhanced our own personal growth, breaking barriers and creating deep and long-lasting business relationships and friendships. Even though operating in what was still a very conservative business environment, we knew we were setting the foundation for a long-lasting platform.