Top women in medical devices 2015

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Newly emerging med tech players large and small seem more apt to put women in the most plum executive spots--at least that's what our 2015 review of the top women in med tech anecdotally turned up.

The closing earlier this year of the Medtronic-Covidien ($MDT) merger created a med tech megacompany worth more than $100 billion. But it wasn't exactly a victory for gender parity among executives. The resulting company has two female executives among its top 16 spots--that's roughly on par with a report earlier this year that found that among the top 5 executives at S&P 500 companies, about 14% are women.

We've featured one of Medtronic's top executives here, SVP of Global Quality Luann Pendy. But a handful of Covidien female execs didn't remain with the resulting company and have moved on.

Among them are Amy Wendell, the former SVP of strategy and business development at Covidien. Since departing, she joined the board of robotic exoskeleton company Ekso Bionics. Stacy Enxing Seng, former president of Covidien's vascular business, has also joined a corporate board or two, but also has yet to reveal a landing spot.

Finally, former Covidien Ventures VP Amy Belt Raimundo joined startup Evidation Health after a very brief stint at Medtronic Ventures. She's there with another featured exec on this year's list, Deborah Kilpatrick, who heads this company that came out of GE Healthcare's ($GE) interest in measuring patient outcomes and cost savings driven by digital health tech.

Kilpatrick is not alone. several women executives are emerging among some of the newest companies in med tech. As information technology and biopharmaceutical companies experiment with how to use med tech to better rationalize healthcare and drug development, some women are at the fore.

These include Adriana Karaboutis, who joined Biogen ($BIIB) as EVP of technology, business solutions and public affairs. She was previously the CIO at Dell--and will head up Biogen's recently disclosed efforts in wearables and ingestibles.

Another big new med tech name is obviously Google ($GOOG). Under the new Alphabet corporate umbrella, Google Life Sciences will offer its own rationale and accounting for the first time in January. Right in the helm is Jessica Mega, who's been dubbed the CMO of GLS and has headed its massive, ongoing Baseline study into biomarkers.

In addition, Deborah DiSanzo is now heading up IBM's Watson Health unit, which aims to integrate massive quantities of clinical, research and social data from all sorts of sources into its Health Cloud. She was ousted in 2014 from her former spot as Philips Healthcare CEO. Given that background, her tenure--and the benefits it produces--are likely to be under widespread scrutiny.

Only one out of 9 executive spots at Royal Philips ($PHG) is currently held by a woman: head of human resources, which is also the position held by the other female executive at Medtronic and is an executive job commonly reserved for women. -- Stacy Lawrence (email | Twitter)

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