It's official: Walgreens taps former Express Scripts chief Wentworth as CEO

UPDATED: Oct. 11 at 1:09 a.m. ET

The Walgreens Boots Alliance officially announced early Wednesday that it would bring in former Express Scripts CEO Tim Wentworth as its new CEO.

Media reports circulated in late September that the pharmacy company was considering Wentworth for the role. In the announcement, Walgreens said that he will take the CEO chair on Oct. 23.

Wentworth will also join Walgreens' board of directors, according to the announcement.

"He is an accomplished and respected leader with profound expertise in the payer and pharmacy space as well as supply chain, IT and Human Resources," said Stefano Pessina, executive chairman of WBA, in the release. "We are confident he is the right person to lead WBA’s next phase of growth into a customer-centric healthcare company."

Wentworth served most recently as the first CEO of Evernorth, Cigna's healthcare services business line that was established following its blockbuster $67 billion acquisition of pharmacy benefit management giant Express Scripts. He joined Cigna following the Express Scripts deal, and was a key player in the integration.

He also has previous experience at Accredo, which is now the specialty pharmacy arm of Evernorth, as well as in human resources at Mary Kay and PepsiCo.

In the release, Walgreens noted that Wentworth is joining the company "at a pivotal time, as the company focuses on right-sizing the business, while driving execution and creating greater value for employees, patients, customers and shareholders."

“I’ve spent my career working to improve the health of the patients we’ve served. I believe WBA is well-positioned to deliver more personalized, coordinated care, and achieve better outcomes at a lower cost," Wentworth said in the release. "I fully recognize the challenges that health plans, healthcare providers, pharmacies, and retailers are confronting today and am confident that WBA, and its customer- and patient-focused teams, can seize the opportunities of a dynamic marketplace and be the partner of choice.”

UPDATED: Sept. 29 at 12:22 p.m. ET

Pharmacy giant Walgreens announced earlier this month that CEO Rosalind Brewer had stepped down at the helm of the company, launching a nationwide search for her replacement.

Now, the company is considering former Express Scripts chief Tim Wentworth as her successor, according to a report from Bloomberg. Both Walgreens and Wentworth declined to comment, the outlet reported.

Wentworth was CEO of Express Scripts during the pharmacy benefit manager's $67 billion sale to insurer Cigna, and later became the inaugural CEO of its Evernorth segment, which houses the PBM and has become a key growth focus for the company.

He retired from his role at Cigna in late 2021.

Rosalind Brewer will step down as CEO of Walgreens, kicking off the search for her replacement, the pharmacy chain announced Friday morning.

Brewer departed the CEO chair as well as Walgreens' board effective on Aug. 31, according to the announcement. Ginger Graham, the lead independent director of the company, will step in as interim CEO while a permanent leader is found, and Brewer will continue to assist in an advisory capacity while the leadership search is underway.

"I am grateful to have had the opportunity to lead Walgreens Boots Alliance and to work alongside such talented and dedicated colleagues," Brewer said in the release. "I am proud of what we accomplished together. We’ve improved the lives of our employees, expanded healthcare services for our customers and enhanced our ability to deliver on our purpose of ‘more joyful lives through better health.’"

Brewer became CEO of Walgreens in March 2021, leading the charge as the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines ramped up.

She stood up and led a team that developed the technology for vaccine scheduling, worked to design a safe operating model for in-store labor and also designed a strategy around vaccine equity. Walgreens has to date delivered 70 million vaccines.

Brewer was also a key leader in the company's strategic push into healthcare, accelerating Walgreens' consumer health programs.

"Roz navigated the company through the global pandemic, overseeing the critical rollout of vaccines in Walgreens pharmacies and to high-risk populations across the country," said Stefano Pessina, executive chairman of WBA, in the release. "She furthered our consumer-facing capabilities while supporting the culture of community and team-member engagement in difficult times."

"We appreciate her hard work and commitment to the company during this period of unprecedented change," Pessina said.

Graham, meanwhile, has held leadership roles across healthcare over the nearly three decades and joined Walgreens' board of directors in 2010.