2012 Next Generation Pharmacist Awards: Meet the Winners

Eileen Oldfield, Associate Editor
Published Online: Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pharmacy Times and Parata announce the 10 category winners and reveal which finalist was named the 2012 Next-Generation PharmacistTM.

To skip to the nominees for a given category, click on the appropriate link below.

Rising Star of the Year
Entrepreneur of the Year
Civic Leader of the Year
Technology Innovator of the Year
Patient Care Provider of the Year
Military Pharmacist of the Year
Long-Term Care Pharmacist of the Year
Technician of the Year
Future Pharmacist of the Year
Lifetime Achievement

(Slider photo caption: From left to right, Tighe Blazier, Pharmacy Times Chief Operating Officer; Joseph Moose, PharmD, of Moose Pharmacy; Bea Riemschneider, Pharmacy Times Editorial Director; and Tom Rhoads, CEO of Parata Systems.)

Introducing the
2012 Next-Generation PharmacistTM
Joseph Moose, PharmD
Moose Pharmacy, Concord, NC


  


Rising Star of the YearRising Star of the Year

Zachary Marcum, PharmD
University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA


Zachary Marcum is not your usual pharmacist. As a researcher and associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine’s Division of Geriatrics, Dr. Marcum creates new avenues of care by combining his pharmacy expertise with the world of clinical medicine and research.

“Dr. Marcum is proof that limitless options exist for pharmacists,” Emily Peron, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pittsburgh, wrote in her nomination. “He has proven his worth as a co-investigator on numerous research projects while developing his own areas of interest as a principal investigator. He does not serve in a stereotypical pharmacist role, yet he is the face of pharmacy for the clinical research community.”

Dr. Marcum specializes in geriatric medicine, completing a postdoctoral research fellowship in that area, and also conducting pharmacoepidemiological research in chronic disease management, drug-related problems, and medication adherence in older adults. His interest in the area is directly related to his experiences as a pharmacy resident at the Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Administration Hospital, where he recognized the clinical importance of drug-related problems in older adults.

Dr. Marcum is currently pursuing his PhD in clinical and translational science at the University of Pittsburgh’s Institute for Clinical Research Education. His long-term goals include becoming an independent investigator and a leading researcher on measuring and reducing drug-related problems in older adults. Within those aims, Dr. Marcum hopes to focus on medication adherence, a field where he can directly apply his skills as a pharmacist.

Dr. Marcum has been published in several medical journals, including the Journal of the American Geriatric Society and The Journals of Gerontology. He has 7 research manuscripts either published or in press, 1 research manuscript in preparation, 10 review articles published or in press, 1 review article in preparation, and 2 book articles in press.

“Dr. Marcum’s dedication to the practice of pharmacy, the aging American population, and interdisciplinary education is admirable and inspiring,” Peron wrote. “Moreover, as a pharmacist with a primary appointment in the School of Medicine, Dr. Marcum is paving the way for future pharmacy researchers to straddle the 2 worlds.”


Entrepreneur of the Year Entrepreneur of the Year



Joseph Moose, PharmD
Moose Pharmacy Concord, NC


The secret to Joseph Moose’s success is the ability to collaborate with physicians, pharmacy staff, and patients, allowing him to reinvent pharmacy practice at Moose Pharmacy. A fourth-generation pharmacist who follows in his greatgrandfather, grandfather, and father’s footsteps, Dr. Moose offers traditional dispensing and clinical services at his family’s pharmacy.

“(Dr.) Moose has seen the role of the pharmacist transition to a provider of care and he strives to maintain a business model that integrates optimal patient care and cutting edge community-based clinical services,” Ashley Branham, clinical service director at Moose Pharmacy, wrote in her nomination. “This business thrives because he values relationships with his patients, with local prescribers, and with his staff.”

His initial encounter with pharmacists as health care resources began early in his career, although the idea has run in the family for generations. According to his nomination, his great-grandfather became a pharmacist at the suggestion of his great uncle, a physician. For Dr. Moose, that close collaboration became apparent during his first year after receiving his PharmD degree, when he would work with local physicians to help patients understand their prescription medications.

Knowing the quality of care and information provided by Dr. Moose led more patients to the pharmacy for medication therapy management (MTM) services and patient counseling. His experiences there led to Moose Pharmacy opening a specialty pharmacy and compounding practice, expanding the family business further.

Often, colleagues will seek Dr. Moose’s advice on MTM services or on new business models because of his knowledge in those fields. Moose Pharmacy’s business model garnered awards from Wake Forest School of Business and Campbell School of Pharmacy.

In addition to his work as a community pharmacist, Dr. Moose strives to develop future pharmacy leaders as a preceptor for PGY1 and PGY2 residents. He is the first independent pharmacy preceptor in the University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy’s residency program.

“He is a leader that inspires people to build their strengths,” Branham wrote. “Joe’s energy, passion, and vision for pharmacy has transformed community pharmacy practice.”


Civic Leader of the YearCivic Leader of the Year

Pete Crouch, RPh, CCP
Eden Drug Eden, NC


Eden Drug was founded on world-class customer service. For owner Pete Crouch, that service tradition extends beyond pharmacy doors and into his community.

“Pete tries to provide as much as possible to his customers, including drug testing for local businesses, vaccine clinics for local groups going abroad for missions, and educating the community about healthy lifestyles,” his nomination form read. “From surveying customers to sending in secret shoppers, he wants to ensure his pharmacy is as perfect as possible.”

Crouch, who began working at the community pharmacy in 2001 and took over ownership in 2006, sees opportunities that are health-related and community related. Under Crouch’s guidance, Eden Drug adopted the motto “Vaccinate here, stay safe there” when administering travel vaccines to patients traveling to Africa, South America, and Afghanistan.

Patient health is always among Crouch’s concerns, prompting him to offer free classes to patients and community members on heart health and diabetes care. Called “Heart Healthy Sessions” or “Sweet Spot Sessions,” the courses integrate pharmacist counseling, medication management, diet, exercise, and simple methods of improving health.

Crouch does not limit himself to events within his pharmacy, however. As a board member of the local Chamber of Commerce, Crouch encourages community involvement among pharmacy employees. Eden Drug’s “Golden Egg” project rewards employees for providing supplies to charity, such as the Red Cross, Cooperative Christian Ministries, and the Lord’s Pantry.

As the owner of an independent pharmacy, Crouch and his wife, Debbie, understand the importance of community support and buying locally. That prompted Crouch to distribute $2000 in $2 bills to Eden Drug’s 35 employees. Armed with about $60 each, the employees can spend the money however they wish, as long as it is spent locally— not saved or used to pay bills—and as long as 10% goes to charity.

“The aim is to have this spread to the entire community because he wants to raise awareness that when you spend your money at locally owned businesses...by working together, they can help rejuvenate their local economy, which will in turn lead to jobs. . . Pete says that even a 10% increase in local spending is a tremendous help, and he hopes he can make a difference.”


Technology Innovator of the YearTechnology Innovator of the Year

Stephen Vogt, PharmD
BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy Altamonte Springs, FL


For Stephen Vogt, revolution in specialty pharmacy began in the mid-1990s, with the idea that pharmacists should provide more than access to biologic medicines.

The owner of BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy, Dr. Vogt’s plan included creating personalized treatment strategies for each patient—a practice that was not often used at the time. The personal touch ensured the best possible outcomes for patients, while also allowing for collaboration with physicians and other care providers.

“I recall being impressed with the feedback I heard from physicians about their clinical experiences in home care and how Dr. Vogt was leading the pack,” Elvin Montanez, senior vice president at BioPlus, wrote in his nomination. “The new model of specialty pharmacy he created goes beyond simply providing biologic medicines and instead treats patients with individual pharmaceutical care plans to ensure that their biologic specialty medicines have the best outcomes.”

To achieve his goals, Dr. Vogt focuses on technology advances that improve operations and access to treatment. Embracing those advances allowed the company to launch a smartphone, tablet, and laptop application where physicians can connect to a patient’s medical pharmacy care team. The secure application allows real time transmission of patient information, e-prescribing and checking medications, viewing therapy assessment reports, and review outcome data.

“Dr. Vogt doesn’t sit back and wait for technological advances to arrive to the marketplace...he follows his vision of creating new and useful technology,” Montanez wrote.

Leveraging technology advances to connect pharmacists and physicians with personalized patient care are among the factors behind BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy’s high compliance rates.

The company reports a 91% compliance rate at discharge for more than 22,200 patients with hepatitis C, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, Crohn’s disease, and cancer, compared with a 50% compliance rate for retail and mail-order pharmacies.


Patient Care Provider of the YearPatient Care Provider of the Year

Marty Feltner, PharmD
Kohll’s Pharmacy and Homecare Omaha, NE


Marty Feltner’s aim is to improve care by making it approachable, and he has turned it into a specialty that encompasses all areas and turns the pharmacy into a health care destination.

A pharmacist since 1999, Dr. Feltner works to expand the role of pharmacists, which often places him at the forefront of pharmacy trends and several patient care areas. He implemented Nebraska’s first international travel vaccine clinic in 2006, which Kohll’s then expanded to other locations.

“Feltner is a great resource, as he knows how to start a clinic from the ground up and how to make it successful,” Laurie Dondelinger, marketing director at Kohll’s Pharmacy, wrote in her nomination. “For example, when Zostavax first came out, Feltner’s single clinic administered 2000 doses in just 2 weeks. Feltner has been so successful with the Omaha clinic that Kohll’s is opening 6 more international travel vaccinations (clinics), all under Feltner’s direction and supervision.”

It was his interactions with a patient, Lillian, that led him to become a national vaccine speaker for Merck Pharmceuticals with the aim of encouraging vaccine administration among pharmacists. A woman in her late 80s, Lillian took only a few minor medications.

“One regular trip to the pharmacy, Lillian noticed a sign about the shingles vaccine,” Dondelinger wrote. “Lillian asked Marty about it and its cost. She discovered it would cost her $90 after insurance coverage, so she declined the vaccine. About 2 weeks later, Lillian got shingles and passed away a year and a half later.”

Dr. Feltner’s work as a vaccine speaker ties into his commitment to prevent or decrease avoidable disease in patients and in pharmacy staff. His Corporate Wellness programs saw local success, and later spread to other locations within Kohll’s Pharmacy. His approach to community wellness had him offering free diabetes and cholesterol screenings throughout the year.

Dr. Feltner’s vow to provide better patient care is not limited to special events. His recognition of the needs of vision-impaired patients led Kohll’s to incorporate talking prescription label readers. As a practitioner with Programs of AllInclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE), he works with patients, physicians, and nurses.

“Many of the PACE doctors, nurses, and staff have complimented Marty on his job well done, and enjoy working with him,” Dondelinger wrote. “His focus is patient care, and it shows.”


Military Pharmacist of the YearMilitary Pharmacist of the Year

MAJ Debra Cosby, PharmD
Brooke Army Medical Center Houston, TX


To MAJ Debra Cosby, all pharmacy training should incorporate leadership and collaboration with other health care professionals.

Her commitment to leadership, courtesy, and collaboration extends beyond her post as assistant chief of pharmacy at Brooke Army Medical Center. In addition to supervising 9 clinical pharmacists there, she also supervises the training of introductory and advanced PharmD interns, including those who are active-duty pharmacists.

“Residents are challenged through their training to develop sound and evidence-based clinical judgment that will prepare them to assume positions in direct patient care,” Deputy CMDR Thirsa Martinez wrote in her nomination. “She strives to instill leadership as a professional obligation from the technician to the resident-level learner.”

As a pharmacist with active-duty experience in Kosovo and Qatar and experience in a healthsystems setting, MAJ Cosby understands the need for training at all care levels. MAJ Cosby is a subject matter expert in American Health Systems Pharmacists accreditation standards from technician training programs to PGY1 residency programs. Her expertise allows her to actively support and encourage pharmacists’ expanded roles as health care providers.

“She has embraced the role of ASHP-accredited residency training in preparing pharmacists to become direct patient care providers, and the importance of quality experiential sites,” Deputy CMDR Martinez wrote. “She is devoted to inter-professional education and collaboration as part of professional development and a patient-centered care model.”

MAJ Cosby’s concentration on patient-centered care is most evident in her recognition of the effects of war on the mental fitness of active duty service members. That prompted her to pursue her specialization in psychiatric medications, and led to her establishing the first PharmD psychiatric outpatient clinical practice site within the Army. “By serving as a role model for effective communication skills and professional socialization, MAJ Cosby produces highly respected residents capable of succeeding as direct care providers, effective managers, and members of collaborative interdisciplinary teams,” Deputy CMDR Martinez wrote.


Long-Term Care Pharmacist of the Year Long-Term Care Pharmacist of the Year

Bent Gay, BSPharm
Gayco Healthcare Dublin, GA


A quest for perfection in providing medicines, consulting, and other care services in a timely and cost-effective manner is a hallmark of Bent Gay’s career as a long-term care pharmacist.

After purchasing what would become Gayco Healthcare in 1993, Gay set his goals on customer service and integrity in long-term care. Although the company provided services to just 4 extended-care facilities when purchased, it has since expanded to serve more than 50 locations that include skilled nursing, hospice, and correctional institutions.

Employees of Gayco say this is because of the special touch Gay brings to his business and his emphasis on service and dedication to care. In particular, Gay ensures the integrity of his company’s services by incorporating only ethically and morally appropriate practices into its services. Three care questions govern decisions at Gayco Healthcare, with pharmacists there constantly asking whether a treatment decision is good for the resident, good for the facility, and good for the pharmacy.

“It is a real pleasure working with Gayco,” Janet McKay, director of nursing at Riverview Health & Rehabilitation Center, said in Gay’s nomination materials. “I have worked with a lot of pharmacies and pharmacists over the years. I can truly say Gayco is the most moral, ethical, and compassionate I have known.”

Open communication between the pharmacy and the facilities it serves is among Gay’s priorities as a pharmacist. Its incorporation of clinical tools, coupled with the open communication, ensures appropriate medication regimens and positive outcomes for patients.

Services offered include monthly nurse consulting by a licensed RN/NHA and bi-monthly regulatory consulting by a licensed RN. Gayco Healthcare offers consultations with a geriatric certified pharmacist to maintain compliance, and also offers in-depth consulting that includes quality indicators, resident assessment protocols, unnecessary drugs protocol, and inappropriate medications for the elderly consulting—something the facilities it serves appreciate.

“Effingham Care Center is very appreciative of the service we have received over the years from Gayco,” said Norma Jean Morgan, chief executive officer of Effingham County Extended Care.


Pharmacy Technician of the YearTechnician of the Year

Michelle Earich
The Wellington Group, LLC Medina, OH


From managing medication carts and hospital and retail inventory to managing pharmacy work flow, certified pharmacy technician Michelle Earich’s goal is always improving pharmacy services to support patient care.

“My aim has been to continually provide the best customer care and service that a pharmacy and staff can give their patients,” she says. “Over the years, I have gained the camaraderie of pharmacists and corporate staff, being challenged by both for ideas on improvement within the workforce.”

These challenges lead to on-the-spot solutions, such as the work flow improvements between physician order initiation and final order, personnel coordination, and system management of home health care that Earich developed. Earich also developed and implemented a management program to ensure adequate follow-up on patient clinical concerns that focused on improving communication between patients, nurses, pharmacists, and physicians.

Earich began her career as an entry-level technician at Aultman Hospital, then moved to community retail pharmacy. The move from health-system pharmacy to community pharmacy allowed her to learn the management portion of pharmacy, and she was placed in charge of advertising, billing, computer entry, inventory control, and OTC product ordering. She became a certified pharmacy technician in 2002, and then moved to infusion pharmacy as an operations support specialist in 2004. She joined the Wellington Group, LLC, in 2009.

In each position, communication proved vital to operations, as did the ability to integrate with her technician colleagues, pharmacists-in-charge, physicians, nurses, and patients. Her solutions to common concerns include developing a system to manage glycemic and enteral patients that covered initial physician order, computer entry, ordering supplies, and managing refill reminders. Her goal when addressing concerns about clinical care centers on improving communication between patients, health providers, and care givers.

Earich serves on the advisory board for a local college as it initiates a pharmacy technician certification program to share needed knowledge about pharmacy operations.


Future Pharmacist of the YearFuture Pharmacist of the Year

Sheri Winner, PharmD Candidate
University of Oklahoma College of Pharmacy Oklahoma City, OK


Sheri Winner knows the capacity pharmacists have to help the health care system, as well as students’ and pharmacists’ role in the political process. Her advocacy for both pharmacists and patients has been a trademark of her years at the University of Oklahoma College of Pharmacy, where her anticipated graduation date is 2012.

“On multiple occasions, she has expressed the importance this profession holds to her because she feels that, as a pharmacist, she can help improve the standard of care to the higher level that our profession is truly capable of,” Shamama Burney wrote in her nomination. “Not only does Sheri want to make a direct impact on her patients by making sure they are educated about the medications they are taking and promote adherence, but she also wants to be active on a legislative level by advocating for patients’ rights and easier access.”

Winner has been actively involved with the American Pharmacists Association, Oklahoma Pharmacists Association, and the National Community Pharmacists Association as a pharmacy student. She served as student political action network liaison to the APhA-Academy of Student Pharmacists from 2009 to 2011 and the policy standing committee from 2011 to 2012. Within her state organization, Winner served as a student representative to the executive board.

Winner’s dedication to her profession brought her and other students to Oklahoma’s state capitol on several occasions to advocate for patients and pharmacists. Since 2010, she has helped organize Oklahoma Legislative Day to teach students about the political process and how to make an impact in health care.

“She has been a loud voice among the students, informing them of how a small gesture like a letter, e-mail, or visit to their legislature can have a big impact,” Burney wrote.

Her passion to get involved led Winner to help coordinate and deliver Oklahoma’s “Road to Nowhere” drug education program, which connected pharmacists and local elementary and middle schools.

“With her dedication and commitment, Sheri continues to be a source of enthusiasm at our college and her vision of the future of our profession is empowering,” Burney wrote.


Lifetime AchievementLifetime Achievement

Lonnie Hollingsworth, PharmD
L&H Drugs Lubbock, TX

The list of honors, professional organization posts, and awards Lonnie Hollingsworth has received spans 3 pages, a testament to more than 50 years spent in pharmacy.

The owner of L&H Drugs, a purchase made just 2 years after receiving his pharmacy degree, Hollingsworth spent those years dedicated to high standards of professionalism and service to his community as a pharmacist, as a businessman, and as mayor of Lubbock.

“His contributions as a leader, entrepreneur, and pharmacist have positively impacted his city, state, and nation,” Whit Moose wrote in his nomination. “He is a pharmacist who has inspired many others to make a profound change for this profession.”

Always available to serve his hometown in charitable and civic ways, Dr. Hollingsworth is known for his excellent services as a pharmacist. In addition to his success as a pharmacy owner, Dr. Hollingsworth committed himself to local and national pharmacy organizations, with the aim of contributing pharmacy service.

Those organizations include the Dean’s Advisory Counsel at Texas Tech University and the National Community Pharmacist’s Association Foundation. His service led to numerous recognitions and awards from associations that include the Texas Pharmacist’s Association, the University of Texas, and the National Community Pharmacist’s Association.

Dr. Hollingsworth is dedicated to supporting student pharmacists both financially and as a mentor. His work with the Texas Pharmacy Foundation for Pharmacy Education, the American Foundation for Pharmacy Education, and the National Community Pharmacy Foundation led him to developing scholarship opportunities for student pharmacists.

Dr. Hollingsworth also served as a mentor for young pharmacists, helping them develop new models for community pharmacy practice. His experience running 4 L&H pharmacy locations has led him to promote policies that would improve community pharmacy practice. Colleagues also turn to Dr. Hollingsworth as a consultant in pharmacy practice, his nomination stated.

An active member of his community, Dr. Hollingsworth volunteers for numerous organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, University Medical Center Foundation, Muscular Dystrophy Association, South Plains Multiple Sclerosis Society, South Plains Council for the Boy Scouts of America, and Crossroads Samaritan Counseling Center. The list of service continues to grow, as does his involvement in various organizations.

“I never failed to get more out of contributing to an organization than I put in it,” he says.


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