Merck Names Michael J. Holston as Future General Counsel; Will Succeed Bruce N. Kuhlik in July 2015


June 23, 2014 7:00 am ET

Merck (NYSE:MRK), known as MSD outside the United States and Canada,
today announced the future appointment of Michael J. Holston as general
counsel, effective July 01, 2015. Holston, who will also oversee
responsibility for Merck’s communications, policy and security
organizations beginning July 1 of this year, will succeed Bruce N.
Kuhlik upon his retirement after ten years with the company. Holston
will remain in his role as chief ethics and compliance officer during
the transition period. These changes reflect a multi-year executive
succession planning process.

“As our chief compliance officer for the past two years, Mike has
advanced the function and quickly become a valued member of our
executive team. I look forward to continuing to benefit from his
insightful advice, deep experience and active engagement on strategic
and operational issues in the key role of Merck’s general counsel,” said
Kenneth C. Frazier, chairman and chief executive officer, Merck.

Holston joined Merck in 2012 as the company’s chief ethics and
compliance officer. He was previously general counsel for
Hewlett-Packard, where his responsibilities included legal,
communications, government affairs and corporate responsibility, in
addition to compliance, ethics and privacy matters. Prior to that,
Holston was a partner in the law firm of Morgan, Lewis and Bockius,
where he served as external counsel to Merck on a wide range of
important matters, including product litigation, government
investigations and compliance with healthcare laws and regulations.
Earlier in his career, Holston was a prosecutor in the criminal division
of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Philadelphia and a partner in the law
firm of Drinker Biddle & Reath, where he had a national litigation

Kuhlik joined Merck in 2005 as associate general counsel and played a
major role in guiding the company’s VIOXX litigation as well as
providing legal support to the U.S. Human Health Division. In 2007, he
was appointed general counsel and assumed additional oversight of the
communications and public policy functions, including the Merck
Foundation. Before joining Merck, Kuhlik was general counsel of the
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America and a partner in
the law firm of Covington and Burling, where he chaired the firm’s food
and drug and healthcare practice groups. He also served as Assistant to
the Solicitor General in the U.S. Department of Justice.

“Bruce’s exemplary leadership has enabled Merck to successfully address
a broad range of litigation, corporate, intellectual property and
regulatory matters,” said Frazier. “I would like to thank Bruce for his
many significant contributions to the company, including his notable
efforts in promoting access to justice for the underserved through
Merck’s legal pro bono program.”

About Merck

Today’s Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be
well. Merck is known as MSD outside of the United States and Canada.
Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and
consumer care and animal health products, we work with customers and
operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health
solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to
healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For
more information, visit
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Forward-Looking Statement

This news release includes “forward-looking statements” within the
meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the United States Private
Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based
upon the current beliefs and expectations of Merck’s management and are
subject to significant risks and uncertainties. If underlying
assumptions prove inaccurate or risks or uncertainties materialize,
actual results may differ materially from those set forth in the
forward-looking statements.

Risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to, general industry
conditions and competition; general economic factors, including interest
rate and currency exchange rate fluctuations; the impact of
pharmaceutical industry regulation and health care legislation in the
United States and internationally; global trends toward health care cost
containment; technological advances, new products and patents attained
by competitors; challenges inherent in new product development,
including obtaining regulatory approval; Merck’s ability to accurately
predict future market conditions; manufacturing difficulties or delays;
financial instability of international economies and sovereign risk;
dependence on the effectiveness of Merck patents and other protections
for innovative products; and the exposure to litigation, including
patent litigation, and/or regulatory actions.

Merck undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking
statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or
otherwise. Additional factors that could cause results to differ
materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be
found in Merck’s 2013 Annual Report on Form 10-K and the company’s other
filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) available at
the SEC’s Internet site (

Pam Eisele, 267-305-3558
Lainie Keller, 908-423-4187
Carol Ferguson, 908-423-4465

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