Bresch, born Heather Manchin, started at Mylan in 1992. She was hired after her father, then a West Virginia state senator, told then-CEO Mike Puskar that she needed a job.
From working in the company’s basement, she moved through the ranks to become Mylan’s chief lobbyist in 2002. In that position, she contributed to the2003 Medicare prescription drug bill, which barred the federal insurance provider from bargaining with drug companies over prices. She was also key to the passage of the 2012 Generic Drug User Fee Act, which increased inspections of foreign facilities manufacturing drugs for the U.S. market. While it increased regulations at Mylan’s own sites outside the U.S., it also made it more difficult for foreign drugmakers to sell their products domestically, knocking out many of Mylan’s competitors.
The bill passed Congress easily, with her father among those providing yes votes.
Congress also passed a law in 2013 prioritizing grant money for schools to stock EpiPens in case of emergency, since children are most at risk for a severe allergy attack. Some states require EpiPens in their schools, including West Virginia, where Gayle Manchin, mother of Heather Bresch, was head of the Board of Education when the policy went into effect in 2013.
Manchin has spoken out against his daughter’s use of an inversion to renounce Mylan’s corporate citizenship, saying that such tax dodging should be illegal. He has not, however, made any public statement about EpiPens since the scandal came to light, and his office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Intercept.