Head of Global Communications & Business Markets / Services
Renee Connolly is the global head of Communications and Business Markets / Services at the Life Science business of Merck, where she leverages the power of education, community and responsibility to motivate the many people the company impacts to achieve greatness. In this role since 2013, Connolly leads the company’s internal communication for 22,000 employees, as well as its external communication, corporate brand strategy, community affairs and corporate responsibility programs. She also oversees events and programs for the business worldwide.
In 2015, Connolly spearheaded the communication strategy for the $17 billion acquisition of chemical giant Sigma-Aldrich — marking the largest acquisition in the company’s history and one of the largest in the Life Science industry. During this time, she also launched the Life Science business’ SPARK™ global volunteer program and signature Curiosity Labs™ program, which inspires students to explore STEM careers through hands-on education. Since SPARK’s inception in early 2016, more than 9,700 MilliporeSigma employees have volunteered more than 89,400 hours across 36 countries, engaging more than 234,000 children.
Prior to joining the Life Science business, Connolly served as vice president of U.S. Communications for the Healthcare business of Merck. Before moving to Massachusetts, U.S., she spent nine years in New York City, New York, working in public and investor relations in the biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and life sciences industries.
Connolly enjoys contributing to organizations focused on building better communities, supporting young women professionals and encouraging future scientists and engineers. She is a board member of the Massachusetts Conference for Women, the Home for Little Wanderers and the Mass Women’s Forum. Connolly has been involved in the American Cancer Society, Hope Lodge and the American Diabetes Association. She was a member of the MassBioEd Foundation for nearly 10 years — three of which she served as chairwoman. She is a past recipient of the Working Mother of the Year award from Working Mother Magazine.
Connolly earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ithaca College. She and her husband, Scott, are parents to four children and live in the Boston, Massachusetts suburbs.