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Stefan Gijssels (Executive Director)

Stefan Gijssels Executive Director
Stefan Gijssels is Executive Director of Digestive Cancers Europe and EuropaColon. Stefan is a colon cancer survivor and dedicated to helping other people avoid getting cancer, and helping patients to get access to the best possible treatment. Stefan also acts as a health policy consultant, publicist and public speaker.

He is a strong believer in the value of more patient-centric and more holistic approach to healthcare. Today, thousands of people die in Europe who could be saved through better health policies and technology.

From 2002 to 2015, Stefan was Vice-President Communication & Public Affairs at the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson for the Europe, Middle East & Africa region. He was a member of the Janssen EMEA Leadership Team and of the company's Global Communications Leadership Team. As part of that role, Stefan was also chairman of the Communications Committee of the Federation of Belgian Industries (FEB), member of the Executive Committee of Business & Society, and chairman of the "Trust, Reputation & Compliance Policy Committee" of EFPIA, the European Pharmaceutical Industry Association.

In the 90s, Stefan was VP Public Affairs at Weber-Shandwick, General Manager and Director Public Affairs at Burson-Marsteller Belgium and Public Affairs Manager at McDonald's Belgium.

Between 1986 and 1990 he worked as a project manager at the Institute of the Enterprise, a Belgian policy think tank.

He was an English teacher in Taza, Morocco for two years, at the beginning of his career.

Stefan Gijssels holds a degree in Linguistics & Literature from the University of Leuven, Belgium where he also studied Social and Cultural Anthropology.

Stefan is married and has three grown-up children. He is the founder of the Free Jazz Collective, the world's leading information source on free improvisation and avant-garde jazz. He also has his literature blog "De Bijl en de Bevroren Zee", with book reviews both in Dutch and English.


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