Rick Gates is the Chief Pharmacy Officer at Walgreens, based in Deerfield, Ill. Pharmacy is the foundation of Walgreens business and critical to achieving the company’s vision to reimagine local healthcare and wellbeing for all. As Chief Pharmacy Officer, Rick brings over 25 years of experience as a pharmacist at Walgreens to the organization’s efforts to evolve the future of pharmacy in healthcare and broaden pharmacy services, as well as overseeing pharmacy operations. Rick also plays a key role in aligning and advancing the Walgreens pharmacy business with the U.S. Healthcare division.

In his previous role, Rick served as senior vice president of pharmacy and healthcare, where he was responsible for commercial development and sales across health plans, pharmacy benefits managers, biopharmaceutical partnerships and work with health systems.  This included specialty pharmacy, clinical programs, contracting, pharmacy supply chain and alliances. 

He has served in roles of increasing responsibility since joining Walgreens in 1995 after graduating from pharmacy school.  Some key examples of roles include in-store care delivery, field leadership, Duane Reade pharmacy integration lead and pharmacy operations, where he led the strategic development, alignment and delivery of pharmacy-led health and wellness programs. 

Rick serves as a current board member with the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS), iA Rx and Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA) and is the executive lead for the Latino Professional Network (LPN) business resource group at WBA.

Rick received a B.S. in pharmacy from the University of Iowa, where he was recognized in 2022 with the Distinguished Alumni Award.  He is an active member of the American Pharmacist Association, NCPDP, NAS, the University of Iowa Alumni Association and an active member of the Health Evolution community.