Partnerships: An Essential Ingredient for Success

Lezlee Westine
President & CEO, Personal Care Products Council

Each new year presents an opportunity to examine our priorities and focus on what matters most. As our nation continues to address the many challenges from 2020, PCPC stands ready in 2021 with renewed energy and sense of purpose.

As our country begins to heal from the tragic events of January 6 and focuses on unity in light of a new administration and new Congress, PCPC and our member companies remain steadfast in our commitment to bipartisan collaborations that enable and enhance our member companies’ ability to provide safe and innovative products to countless American families.

Partnerships are key to achieving meaningful solutions to some of our biggest challenges. From my professional experience in government and the private sector, I know we can accomplish the seemingly impossible by working together. I have seen incredible things achieved when people work towards a common goal.

The spirit of collaboration inspired PCPC to work with policymakers, regulators and NGOs to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. We engaged the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Congress to issue temporary guidance allowing non-traditional manufacturers to address the critical shortage of hand sanitizers. Our members quickly converted manufacturing lines and increased production to provide these essential products. Companies donated more than 20 million units of hand sanitizer to hospitals, community clinics, medical and emergency professionals, first responders, industry employees and made them available to retail customers.

The nation also grappled with issues of systemic racism and calls for equality and social justice this past year. As an industry, we intend to be a positive agent of change and a force for good aiming to engage in partnerships that are both authentic and meaningful. We don’t have all the answers and know there is much work still to be done to address diversity. Working in coalition with many diverse organizations in 2020, PCPC supported anti-discrimination legislation, including the CROWN (Creating a Respectful and Open World for Natural Hair) Act, which passed the House in September. The CROWN Act became law in seven states in 2020 and is currently pending in 20+ states this year, preventing discrimination based on characteristics – such as hair texture and cultural styles, particularly those common in the Black community – and specifically recognizing that Black people are disparately impacted and excluded from some workplaces based on physical appearance. Similar legislation has been passed in seven states. Looking ahead, PCPC is committed to taking continued action to examine and address issues of diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I), both within our organization and in the industry at large, and in partnership with others committed to the same goal.

PCPC’s work with Cruelty Free International proved to be another successful partnership, resulting in compromise agreement on state animal testing legislation, now pending in several states. At the federal level, we worked closely with the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) to introduce the Humane Cosmetics Act, which would ban cosmetic animal testing in the U.S. We will continue to work with HSUS and our congressional partners to pass this legislation in the 117th Congress.  

The power of partnerships was also demonstrated in our work with the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association (ASDSA), American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), and more than 60 other health, education and parent groups to support legislation that specifically allows sunscreens to be used in schools. To date, 26 states and Washington, D.C., have passed the “SUNucate” model.

Partnerships are key to our industry’s continued success, and we remain committed to deepening and broadening them in the year ahead. As President Biden noted: “To live together and work together. That’s how I see America. That’s how I see the presidency, and that’s how I see the future.” This year, PCPC re-dedicates itself to boldly push forward – confronting the challenges ahead while ensuring our member companies can continue to enhance the well-being of countless American families with the cosmetics and personal care products they trust and enjoy every day. 

Statement by Lezlee Westine, President and CEO, Personal Care Products Council, on President Joseph R. Biden’s and Vice President Kamala D. Harris’ Inauguration



Stefanie Harrington, (202) 615-6558,
Jamie Kurke, (202) 258-5285,

Washington, D.C. – “The Personal Care Products Council (PCPC) congratulates President Joseph R. Biden and Vice President Kamala D. Harris on their historic inauguration. We look forward to working with their administration and the 117th Congress to continue to improve our industry’s ability to provide an array of safe, innovative products that enhance the well-being of countless American families who trust and enjoy our products every day.

“Today marks a momentous event for our country. For the first time, girls and women of color can see a future where anything is possible regardless of their gender or race. Beauty and personal care products companies have a strong history of women’s successesfrom Estée Lauder to Madam C.J. Walker, Elizabeth Arden to Mary Kay Ash to a new generation of female entrepreneurs. Future leaders, inspired by the most diverse Administration in history, will continue to address social challenges while building a more equitable and inclusive future.

“PCPC and its members have always believed in the importance of partnerships. We firmly believe that working together can unify the country, improve the nation’s safety and health, and get America moving and working again. Throughout the past year, our industry worked diligently with a diverse group of stakeholders across the country to keep Americans healthy and safe by addressing the critical shortage of hand sanitizers. Companies quickly converted manufacturing lines and increased production to produce these essential products. Our companies worked with federal and state governments to provide and donate more than 20 million units of hand sanitizer to hospitals, community clinics, medical and emergency professionals, first responders, industry employees, and made them available to retail customers. This could not have happened without those critical partnerships. 

“As President Biden said: ‘To live together and work together. That’s how I see America. That’s how I see the presidency, and that’s how I see the future.’ We are energized by the new administration’s commitment to partnerships. Whether it’s American business, international relations or confronting our nation’s many social challenges, PCPC and our member companies are ready to support President Biden’s, Vice President Harris’ and our country’s future success.”


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Based in Washington, D.C., the Personal Care Products Council (PCPC) is the leading national trade association representing global cosmetics and personal care products companies. Founded in 1894, PCPC’s 600 member companies manufacture, distribute and supply the vast majority of finished personal care products marketed in the U.S. As the makers of a diverse range of products millions of consumers rely on and trust every day – from sunscreens, toothpaste and shampoo to moisturizer, makeup and fragrance – personal care products companies are global leaders committed to product safety, quality and innovation.