Forging a strong path: WFH welcomes new CEO Alain Baumann

Working for an international non-profit organization like the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) was always something Alain Baumann had strived for.

It is what led him to leave the corporate world over 10 years ago and it is what led him to accept the role of the new CEO for the WFH in 2015.

“I was looking for a career that would be even more fulfilling working for organizations whose missions I could passionately adhere to. Improving patient care was always my passion even if it was achieved in different ways: introducing new technology, facilitating public and private sector dialogue, helping surgeons performing better surgery to name just a few,” said Baumann.

Most recently, he was the Executive Director for AOSpine International, the largest community of global spine surgeons. Prior to this, he was the Director, Healthcare Community, for the World Economic Forum. Baumann’s first contact with the WFH took place around 15 years ago when in his role as VP Marketing for Baxter Healthcare. It is through these strategic leadership positions, along with his extensive corporate healthcare experience, that he will be able to effectively lead the WFH through the coming years.

“What I found the most fascinating is that the WFH has managed to be recognized as a unique platform for dialogue and cooperation between people with bleeding disorders, families, the medical community, government, and industry. This is a unique position for a relatively small community compared to any other medical condition, “said Baumann. “I always recognized that the biggest strength of the WFH was its unity. This is certainly one of the biggest challenges any volunteer organization may face. Today we are fortunate not to face a ¨unifying¨ crisis like we did 20 years ago – safety remains a priority but today at a time of changes, interpretation and expectation can widely differ.”


However, before starting the real work of the new CEO Baumann does recognize that he must look at the organization and the community from a broader perspective immersing himself into the daily business of the WFH.

“Before any actions, my first priority will be to understand the organization better, understand the key expectations of the WFH NMOs, board members and staff,” explained Baumann.  “The WFH cannot stay still – it needs to adapt to the changes that will affect us. Many medical conditions are competing for the same limited resources that will force us to always innovate.”

In order to stay focus and determined in his professional life, Baumann has taken lessons from one of his biggest passions, classical music. On top of clearing his mind, classical music has given him one other key ingredient. “I do not play an instrument but next to just enjoying music – I am always fascinated by observing the leadership style of some of the world class conductors. Over time style has changed – no one can succeed anymore with a pure autocratic management style – my expectation is to be the enabler to the community to play together a same score to achieve a common vision of treatment for all.”

Baumann recognizes the amazing evolution the WFH went through since the first GAP program designed by Brian O’Mahony which could only be achieved by the passion of its presidents, boards and staff. He also looks forward to and becoming fully integrated into the WFH and reacquainting himself with the bleeding disorders community. His goal is to keep the WFH and its community relevant to all stakeholders and partners in the goal to achieve Treatment for All.

“I would not be remiss without thanking the team based in Montreal, and particularly Elizabeth Miles, for all the work they performed during the interim time. I am humbled to have been selected by your nomination committee and very much look forward leaving the Swiss mountains to what I am told is the beautiful Island of Montreal.”