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March 23rd, 2015

The Bridge Over Troubled Waters

By Yvette Williams, Manager, Political Programs, Johnson & Johnson U.S. Government Affairs & Policy

My parents were from humble beginnings.  “Ma,” as I called her, was from North Carolina, and dad heralded from West Virginia.  They met in Washington, D.C., at a time when it was common for African-Americans to leave rural towns to pursue jobs in major cities.  Both were subject to Jim Crow laws that required separate accommodations for blacks and whites. Neither achieved a college degree.  However, both had a strong work ethic and common sense, which they passed on to me, in part by making sure I got a good education.

Sadly, neither one lived long enough to see our first African-American president take the oath of office – twice – but I think they would have been equally surprised to see their daughter join that president on March 7 in Selma, Alabama.

We were there to commemorate the 50th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” the day in 1965 when civil rights marchers trying to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge were savagely beaten by the authorities. The events of Bloody Sunday led to the passage later that year of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, signaling the beginning of the end of racial discrimination at the ballot box.

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March 20th, 2015

Balancing Act: Women Lose Without Safe Water

By Joy Marini, Executive Director, Corporate Contributions, Johnson & Johnson

As I approached the hanging latrine in Dhaka, Bangladesh, my first thoughts were “how am I going to get up there?” and then “where is the door?” I was in Dhaka to see the progress of a partnership begun in 2009 with Water.org and DSK, a Bangladesh-based water organization, and it was time for me to understand the impetus behind this project.

Hanging latrine in Karmrangir Char, Dhaka, Bangladesh. (Photo by Gary White/Water.org)

Hanging latrine in Karmrangir Char, Dhaka, Bangladesh. (Photo by Gary White/Water.org)

In Dhaka, and in many other parts of the world without toilets or clean water, people must navigate a precarious ramp, sometimes a single plank, to a raised outdoor toilet. Aside from the unsanitary conditions, lack of privacy and spread of disease, navigating a wobbly ramp is a balancing act that is often beyond the abilities of the very young and very old.

Wobbly ramps aren’t the only balancing acts people encounter when their communities lack clean water and sanitation – for women and girls, the biggest balancing act is time. Women and children, usually girls, spend 140 million hours a day collecting water. In the Dhaka community that I was visiting, a girl might spend 2-3 hours a day gathering clean water.

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March 17th, 2015

Working Together on Alzheimer’s Disease

By Paul Stoffels, M.D., Chief Scientific Officer and Worldwide Chairman, Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson

We all know a person with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease: a grandparent or friend, or we may have heard about someone famous who has been diagnosed. We have all heard stories from colleagues, or have our own experiences, with a family member who can no longer remember his children’s names, can no longer drive, and has trouble getting words out, and later on, needs help dressing. The gradual loss of cognition and ability to function slowly steals the person away and causes considerable suffering and hardship.

Approximately 44 million people worldwide suffer from dementia, and as the population ages, this number is expected to double by 2030 and more than triple by 2050. These are truly staggering projections, and the human aspects are heart-wrenching.

Johnson & Johnson and our Janssen pharmaceutical companies have never been more committed to helping people with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. We recently announced an investment of $10 million through Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JJDC, Inc. in a new UK government-led dementia discovery fund that will support innovative research to prevent and treat these devastating conditions. We helped to create the fund as a new type of model to finance early, promising research, based on the reality that one company, one country, or one university cannot do it alone.

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March 15th, 2015

Health Care Pros Build the Case for More Sustainable Hospitals

By Keith Sutter, Director, Medical Devices Sustainability, Johnson & Johnson

We know the impact of health care on our environment is huge: In the United States alone, it’s estimated that hospitals are responsible for generating more than 5.9 million tons of waste annually, and the health care sector is responsible for eight percent of the nation’s carbon footprint. The same can be said of the environment’s impact on health care. In her book, Greening Health Care, Kathy Gerwig of Kaiser Permanente cites a 2002 study that concluded social and environmental factors vastly outweigh medical care in determining people’s health.

It’s not difficult to understand why support for sustainability would be prevalent among health care professionals. In fact, a recent global Harris Poll survey commissioned by Johnson & Johnson found that more than three-quarters of health care professionals across six countries believe sustainability initiatives protect staff, and nearly 70% agreed they make business sense.

Support for Sustainability

Considered together, the data leads to an inevitable question:

How can health care professionals effectively make the case for investments in sustainability within their organization?

Answers are explored in a newly-released report from the Wharton-led Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership (IGEL) and Johnson & Johnson. Greener Hospitals: Building Consensus for Health Care Sustainability looks at best practices and challenges when it comes to developing, and communicating, the business case for sustainability investments across the health care industry.

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March 14th, 2015

What am I doing for others today?

Editor’s note: At Johnson & Johnson, we occasionally like to share an ‘inside out’ perspective about our company and our employees. Recently, we hosted the “Helping Our Neighbors with Our Resources” (H.O.N.O.R.) Awards at our corporate headquarters in New Brunswick, New Jersey. These awards, in memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., honor our employees and members of the local community who have demonstrated a passion for others through their caring and service, including their work with our company Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) and diversity and inclusion in general. (You can learn more about our ERGs here.)

One of the employees recognized at the event was Joaquin Duato, Worldwide Chairman, Pharmaceuticals at Johnson & Johnson. Joaquin is the executive sponsor of the African-American Leadership Council, an Employee Resource Group at Johnson & Johnson. Below are excerpts from Joaquin’s remarks.

HONOR-Speech-Collage

(left: Joaquin speaks at H.O.N.O.R Awards event) (right: Aisha C. Davies, Joaquin Duato, Matthew Johnson. Aisha and Matthew are co-chairs of the J&J H.O.N.O.R ERG)

Joaquin’s Remarks:

When I learned I was receiving this award for leadership and encouragement of the Employee Resource Groups at Johnson & Johnson, I was humbled. Martin Luther King Jr. is the epitome of a remarkable leader who changed the lives of millions.

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March 8th, 2015

Remembering my Grandmother on International Women’s Day

By Olatunde Branche, Associate Director, Janssen Pharmaceuticals

Growing up in Sierra Leone, I lived in a mud house with a thatched roof and slept on the floor. We had no running water and used an outside latrine. We had no electricity either, and I studied by candle light and hurricane lamps. But my grandmother, who raised me until I was 13, loved me so much that I never realized I was poor!

My grandmother took me under her wing allowing my parents to go to school overseas and make a better life for our family. On International Women’s Day I remember my grandmother, and salute the countless women – mothers and grandmothers, sisters and aunts, neighbors and friends, nurses and midwives – who are stepping in to support children and strengthen communities in the face of poverty, epidemics, violence and other disasters.

I have spent the past 25 years as a clinical researcher. In 2014 I was invited to join the Johnson & Johnson Africa Contributions Committee and was privileged to travel to Ethiopia, Kenya and South Africa as part of this team to witness the impact of some of the programs supported by Johnson & Johnson. It was my first visit back to the continent after 38 years.

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March 6th, 2015

Proud of Our Commitment to Equality and Inclusion

By Peter Fasolo, Worldwide Vice President, Human Resources, and Michael Ullmann, Vice President, General Counsel

At Johnson & Johnson, we encourage employees to bring their whole selves to work. This diversity of thought helps us better understand our customers and yields a vibrant global community that is working together to solve the world’s greatest healthcare challenges.

While we have taken a leadership role in creating this workplace culture, there is always more we can do. This is why we joined more than 300 companies in signing an amicus brief that was filed with the United States Supreme Court yesterday in the call for all states to legally recognize same -sex marriage.

The brief points out that inconsistent state marriage laws in the U.S. make it difficult and more costly for employers to recruit and retain talented employees, as well as administer benefits.

Our Credo speaks to our responsibility to respect the dignity of our employees, and provide equal opportunity for everyone. By signing this brief, we are making an important statement in support of our current practices and policies, and further bringing Our Credo values to life. Most important for us at Johnson & Johnson, this is consistent with how we treat employees who are committed in same-sex relationships, reinforces our desire to help them fulfill their family obligations, and is inherent in our Company policies that prohibit discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

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February 23rd, 2015

Welcome to J&J News Center 2.0

By Maggie FitzPatrick, Chief Communication Officer, Johnson & Johnson

We are pleased today to unveil our redesigned J&J News Center, a digital storytelling hub on JNJ.com that gives you a front-row view of the work that our 130,000 employees do every day to serve more than one billion people throughout the world.

Our News Center

The new site will serve as an invaluable content resource, allowing Johnson & Johnson to more fully and immediately engage with our stakeholders about breaking news and our stories of caring, science, public health and innovation.

From our new Ebola page, where we share the latest news about our efforts to fast-track our vaccine program, to the new Thought Leaders section featuring expert voices from across Johnson & Johnson, the News Center will be a dynamic resource to help you stay informed about important health care issues and learn what’s going on behind the scenes at J&J.

Johnson & Johnson Thought Leaders

To get a snapshot of what’s happening around J&J in real-time, I invite you to also visit our newly expanded Follow Us page where the latest conversations are taking place about innovation, public health, parenting and more.

Johnson & Johnson - Follow Us

Across Johnson & Johnson, we are on a journey to continually strengthen engagement and trust with each of you.

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February 12th, 2015

Launching New Research Platforms

By William N. Hait, Global Head, Research & Development, Janssen, Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson

Bill Hait Quote

As a father, physician, scientist and leader of a global R&D organization, I care deeply about the future of health care.

Today, we focus much of our effort on treating established disease rather than placing the majority of our resources behind preventing. Someday, the next generations will look back on us and say, “Can you believe it, they actually waited until they had a disease before doing something about it!”

In my opinion, the future of health care will increasingly depend on identifying and correctly interpreting the susceptibility to disease, on accurately measuring risk, then on preventing or intercepting disease before its onset. Then, by deploying the latest scientific insights from promising, emerging fields, we shall transform the practice of medicine.

Over the past 100 years, preventive measures such as improved hygiene and vaccines have greatly reduced the impact of infectious diseases. However, the impact of chronic non-communicable diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, various cancers, cardiovascular disease and diabetes is steadily increasing in most parts of the world.

Health care costs continue to rise, and payers are struggling to fund the growing needs of aging demographics.

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February 10th, 2015

Staying Resolute in New Year’s Resolutions

By Chris Jordan, Director of Exercise Physiology, Human Performance Institute Division of Wellness and Prevention, Inc., a Johnson & Johnson company

We are just over a month into 2015, so how are your New Year’s Resolutions going? Many of us take a good look at ourselves at the end of each year and decide to embark on an overly optimistic exercise plan for the New Year with good intentions of losing weight and improving our health and fitness. Perhaps we even set goals such as getting in shape for the summer and looking good on the beach.

Chris-Jordan - Stay Motivated

We have all seen how busy the fitness centers are in January. It can be hard to get on our preferred cardio machine or get a spot in our favorite workout class. Like all New Year’s resolutions, the exercise resolution often starts well. We get up early every morning for a run or we make it to the gym every evening after work. We may even add a workout in during the weekend! And, we feel good. Not just physically (we know exercise can boost our energy levels), but also emotionally and mentally, partly because we did what we committed to do. We feel we accomplished something and we are on track with our plan for the New Year!

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