Lilly's Lechleiter returns to work after heart surgery

Eli Lilly President John Lechleiter

Eli Lilly President and CEO John Lechleiter returned to work this week after surgery for a dilated aorta in May. Lechleiter was cleared by his doctor to return to full-time work.

Derica W. Rice, who assumed the role of acting CEO while Lechleiter was on sick leave, will continue in his role as executive vice president, global services and chief financial officer.

Ellen R. Marram will continue in her role as the board's lead independent director after serving as acting chairperson of the board of directors during Lechleiter's medical leave.

"I am overwhelmed and humbled by the tremendous support and well-wishes I have received from my friends and fellow Lilly colleagues around the world," Lechleiter said. "I return to Lilly with renewed energy and enthusiasm, along with a new perspective on health and wellness and the critical importance of new medicines in advancing patient care."

Lechleiter also thanked Rice and Marram for filling in for him while he was recovering.