The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) has announced that former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta will be a keynote speaker at the 2014 NACDS annual meeting, which will be held April 26-29 in Scottsdale, Ariz.
“The world remains tremendously complex, and one can only imagine the global dynamics that will be at the top of the news in April 2014. Whatever the headlines, Secretary Panetta is one of the select few who has the firsthand experience to deliver meaningful insights to NACDS Annual Meeting attendees on issues of national security,” said NACDS President and CEO Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE.
Panetta served as the 23rd secretary of defense under President Obama, during which time he oversaw the final removal of American troops from Iraq as well as the beginning of troop withdrawals from Afghanistan.
Prior to leading the Department of Defense, Panetta served as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) from 2009-2011, and most notably was responsible for overseeing the operation that resulted in the capture of Osama bin Laden. Panetta also served as chief of staff to President Bill Clinton and as director of the Office of Management and Budget. He also represented California’s 16th (now 17th) Congressional District from 1977 to 1993, serving as U.S. House Budget committee chairman for four years.
An advocate for public service, Panetta also co-directed with this wife, Sylvia, the Leon & Sylvia Panetta Institute for Public Policy based at California State University. The nonpartisan and nonprofit center seeks to instill in young men and women the virtues and values of public service.
Panetta received his bachelors of arts degree in political science and law degree from Santa Clara University. He served as a U.S. Army intelligence officer from 1964 to 1966, and received the Army Commendation Medal.
The NACDS represents traditional drug stores, supermarkets and mass merchants with pharmacies — from regional chains with four stores to national companies. Chains operate more than 41,000 pharmacies and employ more than 3.8 million employees, including 132,000 pharmacists. They fill more than 2.7 billion prescriptions annually, which is more than 72% of annual prescriptions in the United States. The total economic impact of all retail stores with pharmacies transcends their more than $1 trillion in annual sales. Every $1 spent in these stores creates a ripple effect of $1.81 in other industries, for a total economic impact of $1.81 trillion, equal to 12% of GDP.