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HDMA announces government affairs promotion, addition

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ARLINGTON, Va. — The Healthcare Distributors Management Association (HDMA) has promoted Kristen Freitas to vice president of federal government affairs and hired Gary Riddle as vice president of state government affairs.

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Kristen Freitas

HDMA said Thursday that Freitas, in her previous role as senior director of federal government affairs, has been pivotal in building relationships on Capitol Hill that have contributed to the association’s recent legislative successes, including the passage of the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2015 (H.R. 471) by the House of Representatives.

In her new post, Freitas will continue to lead HDMA’s federal advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill and manage the association’s political action committee and other grassroots activities.

Before joining HDMA, Freitas worked as manager of government affairs for PacifiCare Health Systems and for a specialty nursing association, as well as for the National Association for Chain Drug Stores. Prior to NACDS, she served as a director of outreach for former U.S. Rep. Dick Chrysler (R., Mich.).

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Gary Riddle

Riddle, who joins HDMA from Eisai Inc., will lead the association’s state government affairs activities, working closely with HDMA’s pharmaceutical distributor members to develop and implement strategies on state legislative and regulatory issues affecting the supply chain.

At Eisai, Riddle served as senior state government affairs manager, directing advocacy efforts in the greater Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions. He also held government affairs positions at Schering-Plough Corp. and the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists. In addition, he served as a health legislative assistant for U.S. Sen. Chuck Robb (D., Va.).

“Gary and Kristen have an extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical industry issues,” stated HDMA president and chief executive officer John Gray. “Their combined industry and association experience, along with a proven ability to build relationships with health care stakeholders and public officials, are an asset to HDMA and its distributor members.”


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