the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Union County, NJ yesterday Bob Hugin, formerly the CEO and Executive Chairman of worldwide bio-tech leader Celgene, kicked off his campaign for U.S. Senate to unseat the embattled and sometime ethically challenged Bob Menendez .
Menendez, whose approval ratings plunged as he was under the cloud of a long-running federal investigation, hasn’t officially announced his reelection campaign. But with the probe over, his top adviser has said there’s a “100 percent” chance he will run.
Hugin, 63, retired late last month as executive chairman of Celgene Corp., a global biopharmaceutical company based in Summit, N.J.
Hugin grew up in a diverse, hardworking neighborhood in Union City, Hudson County, where his parents instilled in him an obligation to serve others. He was the first person in his family to attend college, earning a full scholarship to Princeton University. After graduation, at a time when it wasn’t popular, Bob joined the United States Marine Corps where he served as an active duty infantry officer from 1976 to 1983. Bob participated in multiple deployments and was an instructor at the Landing Force Training Command, Atlantic. He continued to serve as a Reserve Officer from 1983 to 1990, where his assignments included commanding officer roles in Virginia and Battalion staff officer assignments in New York.
Upon leaving active duty in 1983, Hugin earned his MBA from the Darden School of Graduate Business Administration at the University of Virginia. In 1985, he joined J.P. Morgan, ultimately leading several businesses and rising to be a Managing Director, until joining a struggling bio-tech company called Celgene in 1999.
At the time, Celgene had approximately 200 employees and less than six weeks of cash. Under Hugin’s leadership and through the work of its employees, Celgene was transformed into one of New Jersey’s largest private sector employers – an innovative bio-tech company that is now known around the world for leading the fight against cancer and chronic disease. Forbes honored Celgene as #5 on a list of “America’s Best Midsize Employers” and #14 on a list of the “World’s Best Employers” in 2017.
Hugin recently completed 19 years of leadership in healthcare and has been a leading advocate for modernizing the American healthcare system during his time as Chairman and CEO of the Celgene Corporation and as a Trustee of the Atlantic Health System for the last decade.
Hugin also volunteered his time to the Board of Trustees of Princeton University, the Darden Foundation at UVA, and Family Promise, a national non-profit network assisting homeless families. He has also served on the NJ-based think tank Garden State Initiative and is the President of the trustees of his church. Bob also previously served on the board of Choose New Jersey and as past Chairman of the Healthcare Institute of NJ.
At home Bob Hugin and his wife of thirty years, Kathy, are the proud parents of three children. Daughter Hilary is a Manager of Media Investments and Connections Planning at Chobani. Sons Robbie and Mac are both officers in the United States Marine Corps. Bob and Kathy are strongly committed to their community and not-for-profit work. A community service-focused individual, Kathy has positions on the Institutional Review Board of the Atlantic Health System and the Board of Directors of Georgetown University. Kathy also previously served as a trustee of the Kent Place School and the Pingry School.