Sharon DeBacco
VP Product Promotion & Communication
Ironwood Pharmaceuticals

Following a 15-year career in ad agency art direction that leveraged her degree in Advertising Art, Sharon has focused the last 25 years on Rx pharmaceutical marketing. During her storied career, not only has Sharon cultivated various industry-leading consumer marketing launches and strategies, but she always made sure to keep the patient at the center by creating exceptional consumer experiences. Forging ahead in today’s customer-centric, technology-enabled world, Sharon leverages fresh approaches that address changing market dynamics and emerging trends.

Prior to joining Ironwood, Sharon had a 20-year tenure with AstraZeneca (formerly Astra Merck), working with the FDA to shape the DTC guidelines, and leading consumer marketing for several blockbusters, including Prilosec, Nexium, Crestor and others.

Continuing to innovate, Sharon was a founding member of the AstraZeneca Healthcare Innovation Center, identifying non-pharma collaborations with complementary technologies to advance the delivery and management of healthcare.

Shifting back into multi-channel communications, Sharon directed the design and delivery of the first AZ enterprise digital capability, supporting all portfolios with foundational technology platforms, customer-facing services and cross-channel integration.

One of three charged with creating alternative channels to replace traditional sales reps in fully supporting NEXIUM when it exceeded $6B, Sharon earned the President’s Model of Excellence Award, the highest US Commercial AZ recognition.

In her current VP of Product Promotion & Communication role at Ironwood, Sharon continually raises the bar for execution excellence in media, channel, and capability investments to optimize efficiency and effectiveness.


The DTC Hall of Fame is designed to recognize industry members who have made significant contributions to innovate and progress DTC / consumer communications. Industry-wide nominations are collected and then the final four inductees are determined by DTC Perspectives and our Advisory Board, a select group of industry experts who serve as counsel. Inductees can be from any sector of the DTC Industry: Pharmaceutical Manufacturer, Agency, Media Channel, DTC Service Provider, Government, Academia, etc. Nominees should have a minimum of 5-10 years’ experience in healthcare marketing to be considered eligible. Given the newness of the field, it is not necessary to be retired to be eligible. As part of the DTC National, the DTC Hall of Fame festivities include a cocktail party followed by a formal induction ceremony on April 19th presented by Context Media:Health with video tributes and live introductions from industry leaders, as well as an address by the Hall of Fame inductees. Each inductee is also profiled in the annual issue of DTC Perspectives Magazine.