The company recently added David S. Wilkes, M.D., to the governing body and appointed Albert P.L. Stroucken as the lead independent director. A member of Baxter's board since 2004, Stroucken will succeed Thomas T. Stallkamp, who has served as lead independent director from May 2014 to February 2021. Stallkamp will continue to serve as a director of the board.
Wilkes will serve on Baxter’s Quality, Compliance and Technology Committee.
Wilkes currently serves as dean of the University of Virginia School of Medicine, where he has led the medical school’s transformation, which has included targeted initiatives to improve funding and research endeavors as well as diversity programs. He is also co-founder and chief scientific officer of ImmuneWorks Inc., a biotech company developing novel therapeutics for immune-mediated lung diseases; and the national director of the Harold Amos Medical Faculty Program for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, one of the nation’s leading programs in training physician scientists. Prior to these roles, Wilkes served in positions of increasing responsibility at Indiana University School of Medicine, where he focused on medical research.
Wilkes earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from Villanova University, his medical degree from Temple University School of Medicine, and conducted his residency at Temple University Hospital. He completed a post-doctoral fellowship in pulmonary and critical care at University of Texas Southwestern Medical. Wilkes is also a military veteran, having served three years as a major in the U.S. Air Force Medical Corps. In 2020, Wilkes was elected to the prestigious National Academy of Medicine, one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine.
“We are pleased to welcome Dr. Wilkes to Baxter’s board,” said José (Joe) E. Almeida, Baxter board chairman and CEO. “His deep medical and research expertise, track record as a transformational leader, and distinguished career as an internationally recognized biotech entrepreneur will enhance and further diversify our current board membership. I’m confident his patient-centric approach and contributions will advance our Mission to save and sustain lives.”
Stroucken is former executive chairman of the board of directors of Owens-Illinois Inc., where he also served as chairman, president and CEO. Stroucken previously served as chairman, president and CEO of H.B. Fuller Company, a manufacturer of adhesives, sealants, coatings, paints and other specialty chemicals. Prior to these positions, he held roles of increasing responsibility at Bayer AG and Bayer Corporation. Stroucken previously served as a director of Baxalta Incorporated and as a director of Shire plc until its acquisition by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited in January 2019.
Stroucken previously chaired Baxter's Audit Committee.
“We extend our gratitude to Al for assuming the role as our new lead independent director. His experience as a former CEO and chair of Baxter’s Audit Committee makes him uniquely suited to lead our board and provide management oversight," said Almeida. "We also want to recognize Tom for his years of leadership and service as our lead independent director; his deep understanding of our business and the independence with which he has advanced this role have delivered tremendous value to Baxter and our stakeholders. We look forward to Tom’s continued contributions to the board.”
Both new appointments bring the total number of directors serving Baxter to 13.