A reporter with Corporate Counsel, a ThinkAdvisor sister publication, sat down with the general counsel of CVS Health recently to talk about his world. Here’s what he’s seeing.
Thomas Moriarty, the executive vice president, chief policy and external affairs officer, general counsel of CVS, has always been ambitious and has jumped at the opportunity to take on responsibility outside of the legal department.
Moriarty worked in-house at Merck & Co. and helped the company spin off Medco Health Solutions Inc. He joined CVS in 2012 and now oversees a legal department comprised of 265 attorneys.
Moriarty said the additional roles he’s held has helped him prepare the company’s acquisition of Aetna Inc.
(Related: CVS Makes a Pitch for the ‘HealthHub’ Model)
He spoke to Corporate Counsel recently about his time at CVS and his responsibilities outside of the legal department help to inform business and legal decisions.
This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.
Corporate Counsel: When you came to CVS in 2012, were you prepared to have responsibilities outside of the legal department?
Thomas Moriarty: Absolutely. At Medco, I was the head of our pharma group. I ran strategy. I ran M&A and corporate strategy.
The first year and a half or so at CVS was learning the business. I knew pharmacy and I knew PBM [pharmacy business management]. Retail, however, was a new animal. Also, the breadth and scale of CVS is different than a lot of other companies. In relatively short order, the role [of general counsel] did start to expand as it had not in some prior roles. It has been an evolution in the past five to seven years.
CC: What are some of your other duties outside of the general counsel role at CVS?
TM: I’ve always kept the general counsel hat on. My role initially expanded to taking over government affairs and the public policy function. Shortly after that, corporate strategy was added to the role. I was the chief strategy officer for approximately three years. The chief strategy officer role was really blending all that was involved with public policy-related issues, government affairs-related issues and where regulation was moving. How is that going to influence where we go as a business? That is very much related to how you form your strategy.