Pierre Theodore, M.D., Vice President of Global External Innovation, Medical Devices Lead, Lung Cancer Initiative, volunteering at a hospital in Haiti
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Personal Stories
Doing Good Day and Night: 6 Johnson & Johnson Employees Who Are Making the World a Better Place
Doing Good Day and Night: 6 Johnson & Johnson Employees Who Are Making the World a Better Place
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Who says you can't take your work home with you? For these men and women, their day jobs are just one facet of living a purpose-driven life to help others in truly impactful ways.

he phrase "bringing your job home with you" doesn't always have the best connotation.

That is, unless you work at Johnson & Johnson.

Our Credo, the company's guiding mission statement, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, outlines Johnson & Johnson's long-standing commitment to placing the needs and well-being of the people it serves first through everything from innovating groundbreaking medications for unmet needs to training frontline healthcare workers around the globe.

And for many Johnson & Johnson employees, placing the needs of others first doesn't have to end when the clock strikes 5 PM.

Our Credo also recognizes the company's responsibility to support employees—like these admirable men and women around the world who are proof that Johnson & Johnson inspires the kind of passion and purpose for helping others that you just can't leave at the office.

  • Jethro Ekuta, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, North America, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Share

    "I Founded a Nonprofit That Provides Clean Water and Disease Prevention Education in Africa" Jethro Ekuta, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, North America, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    My day job is …
    I’m responsible for ensuring that Johnson & Johnson consumer products that are in development or marketed in North America are in compliance with all applicable health authority regulations.

    My passion project is …
    I grew up as part of a small tribe in a village in Nigeria, and one of the problems we had was access to clean drinking water. When I left Nigeria in 1990 to come to the U.S. for graduate school, the question of how I could help people back home was perpetually on my mind.

    When you know that young children are dying because they’re developing diarrhea from drinking contaminated water—and it’s preventable—it gets your attention. It’s just not acceptable.

    The number of things we, in certain parts of the world, take for granted—access to quality healthcare, good water—are luxuries for millions of people. Anything I can do to make a positive impact on others’ lives, however little, I’m going to do it.

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    I connected with some people from my tribe who were also living in the U.S., and in 2015, we decided to form Bassa Nge Community North America (BNC), a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping others in our home community. I’ve been the founding chair of the board since the beginning.

    Since many infections and diseases result from drinking contaminated water, we’re digging boreholes—they’re like wells, and the water that comes from them is typically very clean—for about 100 communities. We also provide people with medicine to treat and prevent infectious diseases.

    I also volunteer with the Patcha Foundation, a nonprofit that educates Africans and others about cancer and other preventable diseases. Every year since 2015, I’ve lead presentations on disease prevention at their annual conference.

    In the past, most of Africa’s health challenges dealt with infectious diseases, but now, with increased life expectancy, many people are developing cancer and other chronic diseases. Hospitals may not be equipped with modern technology for treatment or diagnosis, but we can educate people about disease prevention through early detection and lifestyle changes.

    The number of things we, in certain parts of the world, take for granted—access to quality healthcare, good water—are luxuries for millions of people elsewhere. Anything I can do to make a positive impact on others’ lives, however little, I’m going to do it.

    That’s my life’s mission.

  • Diana Johnson, Senior Scientist, Consumer R&D, Skillman, New Jersey Share

    "I Teach Kids About Why It's Cool to Work in STEM" Diana Johnson, Senior Scientist, Consumer R&D, Skillman, New Jersey

    My day job is …
    I help come up with the formulas for Johnson & Johnson consumer products, like facial cleansers, scrubs and makeup remover wipes.

    My passion project is …
    In school, I got to work at a lab and the experience ignited me in a totally different way than my science classes did. I wanted to bring that level of excitement to others, so eight years ago, I got involved with my local chapter of Women in Science and Engineering (WISE).

    Our goal is to teach STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education to the community, and make science fun and relatable. We run events for groups like the Girl Scouts and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, as well as for kids from underprivileged areas. In the last year or so, our programs have reached about 2,500 students.

    I’m not sure this gets communicated in school, but the best scientists are really creative—they push barriers and think innovatively. We try to incorporate these lessons into our WISE STEM education.

    For example, we taught kids how to make their own cleansers and scrubs—like I do at work! We talked about the chemistry behind it, then gave them different colored beads and dyes and let them create their own “product.”

    You just have to give kids tools and guidance to think outside the limits, and they can do amazing things.

  • Tyrone Mao, Senior Director, Scientific Innovation, Johnson & Johnson, Innovation Center-Asia Pacific, Shanghai, China Share

    "I'm Part of an NGO That Makes 3-D-Printed Prosthetic Limbs for Underserved Children in China" Tyrone Mao, Senior Director, Scientific Innovation, Johnson & Johnson, Innovation Center-Asia Pacific, Shanghai, China

    My day job is …
    I find opportunities to collaborate on technologies or products from innovators outside of Johnson & Johnson.

    My passion project is …
    In China about 1.1 million kids have lost arms or hands, either because they were born that way or they suffered an accident. I wanted to help, so I joined an NGO called HandsOn that uses a 3-D printer to make prosthetic arms and hands for children, especially those who are poor and live in remote places.

    After the kids get their 3-D-printed arms and hands, our team members go visit them. I got to see one of the kids ride his bicycle for the first time. It was an amazing thing.

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    3-D-printed prosthetics are affordable to make, plus they’re a good solution for kids because they grow fast and need to replace their prosthetics more often.

    Last May I organized a workshop where Johnson & Johnson employees with experience in 3-D printing worked with HandsOn to improve on the prosthetics’ design, materials and assembly. Since then we’ve run three workshops and provided eight or nine sets of arms and hands.

    After the kids get their 3-D-printed arms and hands, our team members go visit them and take photos and videos, so all the members of the volunteer team can feel their joy. I got to see one of the kids ride his bicycle for the first time. It was an amazing thing.

  • Silvia Jatobá, Senior Human Resources Manager, MD Supply Chain Brazil, São José dos Campos, Brazil Share

    "I Volunteer My Time to Help Support Cancer Patients Just Like Me" Silvia Jatobá, Senior Human Resources Manager, Medical Devices Supply Chain Brazil, São José dos Campos, Brazil

    My day job is …
    I support the medical supply chain division on the development of our key talents, ensuring we have the right capabilities and skills on staff to help save lives.

    My passion project is …
    At age 30, I was diagnosed with leukemia. I fought it, and after two years, it was gone. Life was incredible, until 2015: I was six months pregnant with my first baby at the time, and I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

    I never asked why, but I asked “for what?” because there’s always something to learn from every challenge. In January 2017, I finished the hardest part of my treatment—chemotherapy and radiation. And now that the cancer is gone, I have a mission: support those facing the same challenges I faced.

    For nearly two years now I’ve been volunteering for Grupo de Apoio a Pessoas com Câncer (GAPC), an organization that helps adults with cancer by offering emotional support groups, among other things. I can put myself in their shoes and share their emotions. I can show them that even though cancer is a very tough disease, it’s possible to be cured and be strong. We don’t talk about the disease or death. We talk about life.

    At work, I’m always thinking about the patients and customers, and what kind of products and services we need to provide to give the best to them. And through my volunteer work, I'm helping people emotionally on how they can overcome health challenges.

  • Marthe-Sandrine Mpollo, MSc, Ph.D., Medical and Scientific Liaison, Dermatology, Quebec, Canada Share

    "I'm Launching a Mobile Service to Help Pregnant Women in Cameroon Get Access to Healthcare" Marthe-Sandrine Mpollo, MSc, Ph.D., Medical and Scientific Liaison, Dermatology, Quebec, Canada

    My day job is …
    I’m the scientific point of contact for dermatology healthcare providers and I'm responsible for addressing their medical, scientific and research needs, along with providing field insights to inform and shape business strategy.

    My passion project is …
    In 2014, I decided to look into the idea of how leveraging technology could have an impact on patient health in Cameroon, where I’m from.

    When we launch next year, we’ll be focusing on providing financial assistance and vital health information to pregnant women, who have a high unmet need for healthcare and high economic barriers to access.

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    There’s no universal healthcare in Cameroon—you have to pay up front for any services you need, and a lot of people don’t have the means to see a doctor. What everyone does have, however, is a cell phone. With that in mind, my brother and I teamed up to create a mobile app called NaYa, which provides low-income patients with affordable access to healthcare services and medical information.

    NaYa—a combination of our childhood nicknames—offers financial assistance and health information to patients who need to pay for doctor consultations, lab tests or medication. Funds for the financial aid will come from my and my brother’s personal savings to start, and as NaYa grows, we hope social-impact funds will invest.

    When we launch in 2019, we’ll be focusing on providing financial assistance and vital health information to pregnant women, who have a high unmet need for healthcare and high economic barriers to access. It’s common for pregnant women in Cameroon to delay going to the doctor because they need the money for other things, like feeding their children.

    We want to give them the ability to feed their kids and take care of themselves.

  • Pierre Theodore, M.D., Vice President of Global External Innovation, Medical Devices Lead, Lung Cancer Initiative, Johnson & Johnson, San Francisco, California Share

    "I Travel to Haiti Every Year to Help Provide Surgical Care to People in Need" Pierre Theodore, M.D., Vice President of Global External Innovation, Medical Devices Lead, Lung Cancer Initiative, Johnson & Johnson, San Francisco, California

    My day job is …
    I work on understanding the methods to diagnose and treat early stages of lung cancer, and invest in the technology, companies and people that will help us defeat it.

    My passion project is …
    After the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, where my family is from, I traveled there and saw patients who died unnecessarily after trauma and childbirth. It was the first time I saw what it meant to be resource-limited in a healthcare setting, and I was very struck. When you see misery in the world that you can do something about, it encourages a certain responsibility, and I felt I needed to help.

    So I began taking leading surgeons in the Bay Area to Haiti to offer surgical care and help build infrastructure in the hospitals there. When you engage in infrastructure building, you create a system that’s able to provide care for innumerable people in need.

    I head back to Haiti at least once a year to perform complicated thoracic surgery procedures and offer support. My volunteer work is empowered by what I do professionally—they’re both part of the greater cause of trying to reduce human suffering through medical devices and delivery of care. That gives me a sense of mission as I go throughout my day.

From China to Brazil, Johnson & Johnson's Global Community Impact team works to create a healthier world—one community at a time.

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