Head of Human Resources
As head of human resources (HR) at the Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute, Carol O’Brien develops and drives people strategies that are aligned with company strategies while fostering employee engagement.
Carol brings over 20 years of experience in HR, working in large multi-country companies and smaller start-up sites specializing in R&D, lab operations, manufacturing, clinical trials, and corporate services. Prior to joining Gates MRI, Carol served as senior director and global HR business partner to the CFO, CIO, and the global head of clinical trial supplies and logistics at Parexel International. From 2012 to 2018, she was the HR leader for several start-up sites in research, lab operations, and gene therapy manufacturing, including bluebird bio, JAX Genomic Medicine, and Foundation Medicine. She was previously director of corporate human resources at Schneider Electric, where she focused on global talent management for the IT business unit. Carol held several HR business partner roles at Pfizer from 2001 to 2008 supporting pharmaceutical sciences, research science and technology, applied R&D, discovery chemistry, comparative medicine, and corporate services.
Carol earned her business degree with legal specialization at King’s College. She completed HR management courses in organizational theory at Salem College and the Principles and Practices of Organizational Development program at Teachers College, Columbia University.