By Christine Imbs
One of the first things Patrick McNamee did when he joined Express
Scripts and moved back to St. Louis was to join Norwood Hills
“I used to caddy at Norwood Hills when I was a kid,” he says.
“It’s a tough set of courses, and they have some great golfers
Secretly, McNamee would like to be one— a great golfer that
“If I could, I’d really love to be a professional golfer,” he
says. “I watch those guys, and I really admire them. But it’s
just a fantasy. Unfortunately, I don’t have the time or the
innate skills to be a professional golfer.”
McNamee may not have the innate skills for the PGA, but that
suits him just fine. As CIO for Express Scripts, he’s thrilled
to be part of such an exciting industry and company.
“You bet it’s exciting. And Express Scripts is a fairly young
company, so it has a lot of energy and creativity,” he says.
“I love it.”
Express Scripts is one of America’s largest pharmacy benefit
managers, providing the pharmacy benefit for over 50 million
people nationwide through employers, managed-care plans, unions
and governmental entities. Headquartered in St. Louis, the company
has major administrative offices in multiple states, including
Minnesota, Arizona, New Jersey, and Florida, as well as Canadian
operations in Quebec and Ontario.
“It’s just a great company with a great growth rate that’s important
to our country,” McNamee comments. “I couldn’t be more excited
about merging technology with operations, continuing to find
efficiencies across our organization, and helping members with
what they need. And of course, being back in St. Louis has been
McNamee was raised in North County and attended Saint Louis
University High School, where his love of math and science,
among other things, seemed to move him toward an engineering
“I also had an interest in experimentation, electricity, and
stereo and high fidelity equipment,” he says. “And as a young
kid I was always taking things apart and putting them back together.
So I guess I always knew I’d go into technology and engineering.”
McNamee ended up attending Marquette University in Milwaukee,
where he enrolled in its biomedical engineering program. It’s
something he says he probably wouldn’t have done, if not for
his sister, Sharon.
“Sharon was a role model,” he explains. “Our parents gave us
the opportunity to go to college, but they didn’t push us. The
fact that Sharon was so self-motivated and got to a PhD made
me think I could do it, too. She’s currently a professor at
Saint Louis University.”
From Marquette University, McNamee joined the University of
Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, doing research and
image processing. He then joined General Electric, where he
served as president of GE OEC Medical Systems; senior vice president,
CIO, and chief quality officer at NBC, a division of GE; CIO
of GE Power Plants; and CIO/eBusiness Leader for GE Transportation.
He was working for Misys Healthcare Systems, which developed
and sold practice management and electronic medical records
software to physicians, when he discovered Express Scripts.
“Coincidentally, Express Scripts was back in St. Louis, where
my mother and a couple of sisters still lived,” McNamee says.
“I loved the company, the leadership, the growth rate, the technology
challenge and the requirement to be a business leader. So with
all that going for it, I joined them.” And McNamee says it’s
been a great two and one-half years. He’s not only chief information
officer, but he’s now responsible for all of Express Scripts
operations, including its mail-order pharmacies, call centers
and front-end order processing. Plus, he’s back in good old
“It’s been terrific being back here again. Of course, I left
at age 18, so I don’t really know it all that well. But still
I’m running into a lot of old friends and old businesses,” he
says. “And, of course, being close to my family’s been great
too. Really, it’s just been a lot of fun. And St. Louis is a
great place to be.”
BORN: St. Louis.
FAMILY: Wife, Sandra;
and master’s degrees in Biomedical Engineering from Marquette
FAVORITE BOOK: “Jack:
Straight from the Gut” by Jack Welch and John A. Byrne
CURRENT READ: “The
Grand Slam” by Mark Frost about golfer Bobby Jones.
PHILOSOPHY: “Get out
of your comfort zones. You’re not going to be as successful
if you don’t.”