Foundation for a Smoke-Free World today announced that Derek Yach will no longer serve as president and board director. Heidi Goldstein, general counsel, and David Janazzo, chief financial officer and executive vice president of operations and finance, will serve as interim co-presidents, effective immediately, while the board conducts a search for a new president to lead the foundation and its vital mission forward.
“After careful consideration, the board has determined that now is the right time for a new leader to guide the essential efforts of the Foundation, its team and its work with partners around the world,” said Pamela Parizek, chair of the Foundation’s board of directors, in a statement. “As we continue to take urgent action to accelerate progress toward ending smoking in this generation, we look forward to this opportunity to take the Foundation to the next level of achievement.
“The Foundation remains squarely focused on its mission to improve global health by reducing death and disease caused by smoking, and Heidi and David, together with the rest of our talented team, will continue advancing our global research grantmaking, range of innovative programs and powerful public health collaborations without interruption.”
Parizek continued, “On behalf of the board, I want to thank Derek for helping to establish and build the Foundation. We deeply appreciate the contributions he has made to this team’s work and to communities around the world through decades of ground-breaking efforts in tobacco control and public health. We wish him all the best.”
“The Foundation’s ongoing work to end the world’s largest single preventable cause of death could not be more needed today,” said Yach. “I leave the Foundation with deep satisfaction that we now have an emerging cadre of hundreds of researchers, advocates and industry scientists dedicating themselves to this goal. My future efforts aim to complement them.”