Success Has No Gender

Published on 26 April 2017

The path to success has been a winding one for Amy Bricker '99, R.Ph., vice president of supply chain strategy and product development at Express Scripts (ESI). On Thursday, March 30, Bricker spoke to a packed room of students, faculty and staff about her dynamic career and her experiences as a woman in leadership.

During high school, Bricker worked as a pharmacist's assistant. When it came time to consider colleges, her mother suggested St. Louis College of Pharmacy. Hailing from a small town in southern Illinois, Bricker discovered a very different pace when she arrived in St. Louis as a freshman. Bricker claims she was an average student, juggling full-time enrollment with a part-time job throughout college, but her work ethic and ambition would be key in future achievements.

Bricker's career has explored a wide range of areas within in the pharmacy profession, from working in the community setting to management in the nonprofit sector at Barnes-Jewish Hospital to administrative leadership in managed care. On each stop of her journey, she stood firm in her beliefs and abilities and persevered.

"There were times of fulfillment, and there were times of feeling stuck," Bricker explained. "In those moments you need to step back and assess what is not working and then do something about it. Say yes, as often as you can."

Bricker is dedicated to helping others reach their potential, especially women. In 2014, she launched a women's employee resource group, WE LEAD (Women of Express Scripts, Listen, Engage, Advocate and Develop). This group is the first of its kind at the company and has grown to more than 1,800 employee members nationwide.

"As a woman in business, it is your responsibility to pull men and women up," Bricker said. "Teach them. Coach them. Help them learn how to succeed."

In addition to her work at ESI, Bricker was appointed to the nonpartisan Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) in 2016. She serves alongside researchers, consultants and fellow health care leaders whose expertise and experience will influence the future of Medicare policy. She approaches this opportunity as any other, and when it comes to tough decisions, she is committed to doing her job well, even if it means making an unpopular decision.

"Don't wait for permission to speak up," Bricker encouraged her audience. "If you know something isn't right, say something."

The visibility of a woman as influential and game changing as Bricker is something of a beacon to the women around her. As she expands her career, she continues to support those around her in pursuing their own success.

"Coming up in my career, there weren't a lot of female role models in health care that I knew, and it was hard to relate, Bricker told the St. Louis Business Journal when she was selected for their "40 Under 40" list.

As efforts toward equality are still in progress, Bricker is working to make more space for women in business and health care. Bricker's drive and continued achievements are proof success has no gender.

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