Gilles Bouchard took the helm of the Charcot-Marie-Tooth Association March 16, saying that while he is “excited and delighted” with the progress made by the CMTA’s STAR research program, there’s still much work to be done before a first drug treatment for CMT reaches the 2.8 million people who have it.
Gilles’ history with CMT dates back to 2001, when his son Yohan was diagnosed with the disease. Gilles has been involved as a volunteer advisor to the Board since 2007, when he organized the strategic retreat in Palo Alto where the STAR program was initially defined and launched.
Gilles praised Herb Beron, his predecessor as chairman, saying, “Herb was instrumental in taking the organization to a whole new level, and we’re grateful to him for all his hard work over the years.” Beron, who will remain on the board, was chair from 2011 to 2016.
Before becoming chair, Gilles was chairman and CEO for Livescribe, a venture-backed company that is the leader in the smartpen market. Previously, Gilles was the CEO of Opnext, a maker of fiber optic components, originally founded as part of Hitachi.
Earlier, Gilles spent 17 years at Hewlett-Packard, working his way up to executive vice president of Global Operations and CIO, reporting directly to CEOs Carly Fiorina and Mark Hurd. Gilles was instrumental in the company’s dramatic turn-around in the mid-2000s, earning recognition as one of CIO Magazine’s Top 100 executives. Earlier in his career, Gilles built HP’s North American consumer PC division into a multi-billion dollar business, growing the HP Pavilion brand into the industry leader.
Prior to HP, Gilles served as a researcher at the IBM Watson Laboratories, earning the prestigious “IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award.”
A native of Paris, France, Gilles is an avid cyclist, equestrian, mountaineer and skier with a certification as a backcountry ski guide.
He holds an MS in mechanical engineering from UC Berkeley, a BS in engineering from Ecole Centrale de Lyon, France, and executive education degrees from INSEAD and Harvard Business School.