Top women in biopharma 2015

This year's fiercest women in biopharma are seemingly doing it all.

Pioneering a fully integrated biotech in China? Check. Leading aging research at Google's mysterious new life sciences upstart? Check. Changing the game for biotech innovators? Running the world's largest consumer health player? Blazing the off-P&L financing trail? Check, check, check.

But while at times our 12 honorees have made it look easy, it hasn't necessarily been that way. Biopharma is still a world dominated by men, which, according to Kleiner Perkins' Beth Seidenberg, means women "need to be the champions."

"It's a 50-50 world, but we see that 15% of founders or CEOs are women. Only 15% in the 50% that are women have good ideas? Come on," she says.

Sometimes, though--as several of the women on this list know--being the champions means more than just leading by example, and they're doing their parts to help others to the same levels of success through recruiting, volunteering and mentoring.

"Leadership is about creating futures that are not a direct path," says the Broad Institute's Samantha Singer. "It's about being courageous and being willing to speak about and talk about futures that aren't obvious to other people. Take a stand for a future you can see, one you know can happen even when you can't see how."

As for the future we can see? It's one that includes putting those they've inspired on this list sometime soon. -- Carly Helfand (email | Twitter)

Revisit our previous Women in Biopharma features: 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, and 2010.