Myrtle Potter: COO of Genentech

Her father bet the house on her teenage ambition and won a biotech miracle worker

You've probably never met Myrtle Potter, but you may have taken some of the medicines she has marketed. At Merck in the early 1990s, her name became legend when she took charge of a struggling ulcer remedy called Prilosec and transformed it into a worldwide best seller. At Bristol-Myers Squibb in the late '90s, she worked the same magic on billion-dollar brands like Pravachol (for high cholesterol) and Glucophage (for diabetes). Today Potter, 44, is the COO of the world's No. 2 biotech firm, Genentech, where she's working to bring 20 drugs to market over the next decade. By then, observers...

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