Rosalind Brewer, Chief Executive Officer, Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc.

Source: Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc.

Brewer stepped down as of 31 August

Rosalind Brewer has stepped down as CEO of Walgreens Boots Alliance, two-and-a-half years after she was appointed.

Brewer stepped down as of 31 August, the company said, with WBA lead independent director Ginger Graham stepping in as interim CEO while a permanent replacement is sought.

Brewer succeeded Stefano Pessina as WBA’s CEO in March 2021, just as Covid vaccines were becoming available in the US. She was at the helm throughout the company’s failed attempt to sell off Boots last year.

In its latest trading update, in June, WBA cut its profit forecast for the year, as Brewer said “significantly lower demand for Covid-related services” and a “more cautious and value-driven consumer” was putting pressure on margins.

“On behalf of the entire board, I would like to thank Roz for her contributions to WBA,” said executive chairman Pessina. “Roz navigated the company through the global pandemic, overseeing the critical rollout of vaccines in Walgreens pharmacies and to high-risk populations across the country.

“She furthered our consumer-facing capabilities while supporting the culture of community and team-member engagement in difficult times. We appreciate her hard work and commitment to the company during this period of unprecedented change.”

Brewer said: “I am grateful to have had the opportunity to lead WBA and to work alongside such talented and dedicated colleagues. I am proud of what we accomplished together.”

She added: “I am confident that WBA is on track to be a leading consumer-centric healthcare company, serving thousands of communities across the country.” 

Pessina said Graham – who has held leadership positions across the healthcare industry for nearly three decades – had “deep knowledge of WBA” and was the “ideal person to serve as interim CEO”.