Last year, on 4th September, my life changed forever when I won the Best MSL outside the USA award at the second annual MSL Awards ceremony in Las Vegas. Perhaps, you may think I am exaggerating when I say it changed my life, but quite honestly, it is no exaggeration!
Winning the award has directly impacted my career at MSL over the last year. It has given me a fantastic opportunity to help junior MSLs through the Mentoring Program to which I applied after receiving the award. It has also opened doors in terms of collaborating on projects within the MSL Society to set standards of excellence to which future projects can aspire.
I have no doubt that even in the long-term winning this award will continue to impact my MSL career by giving me the opportunity to lead new projects where I will bring all my enthusiasm, knowledge, experience, and passion to the position.
Apart from the professional benefits, there are also some personal ones which are equally worth mentioning. For instance, the application process was extremely worthwhile in the sense that it allowed me to put together all of my achievements, both past, and present and it meant that I was able to take stock of my career to date. That experience in itself was so rewarding; with everything down on paper, I realized the extent of my achievements and how I have impacted people I have worked with, on projects I have done and I felt a great sense of pride.
The award means so much to me. It’s an honor and a wonderful recognition, but I could not have won it without the human and professional experience that I have had along the way. I am lucky to share my career with all the collaborators, colleagues, patients, KOLs, students, with whom I have worked in a methodical and rigorous way. The mileage that has been clocked up so far is the result of a joint effort, the interactions, and experiences of several people from different fields in pursuit of a common goal. This is one of the most beautiful parts of my profession, and I thank them from the bottom of my heart and share this award with them.
In a position as competitive and demanding as working as an MSL, you are fortunate to have supportive and encouraging colleagues, but you are even more fortunate again if you can call your colleagues friends and I am delighted to say that this is the case for me. I entered the competition because my colleague and now friend, Victor Sastre (Senior MSL Amgen) nominated me in the first instance, and Cristina Garcia (MSL Manager Persan) encouraged me to apply. They believe in me more than I do in myself sometimes and I couldn’t be more grateful to them.
I would not like to end without thanking the judges for all the remarkable work they do in receiving and reading all the applications from the MSL, MSL Rocky, and MSL manager who enthusiastically apply. Making a decision cannot be easy. A tremendous thank you for choosing me last year and for your decision this year. And of course, thank you to the MSL Society for making everything possible.
Finally, I would like to congratulate the winners of the 2020 awards. It’s fantastic to be recognized for your excellence within our MSL profession!!!! Enjoy the moment! It truly is an awesome milestone in your life. Hopefully, we will celebrate next year face to face.
Martina Riosalido Montero, MSc
Martina has more than 13 years’ experience in the Pharmaceutical & Biotech industry, in Training, Marketing, and Medical Affairs departments, overseeing both national and international projects for subsidiaries and headquarters within a multicultural work environment. She is currently an MSL with Gilead, focusing on COVID-19 ant-viral drugs. In 2019, she received the MSL of the Year-Outside USA from the MSL Society.