Jenkins Selected as Wal-Mart Community Pharmacist of the Year

JULY 01, 2008
Alicia Rybovic, Associate Editor

Wikipedia defines a pharmacist as a "health professional who practice[s] the art and science of pharmacy." Beyond that, however, a pharmacist also is a counselor, an advisor, a friend, and a community member, among many other roles. One pharmacist, Amanda Jenkins, pharmacy manager of Wal-Mart store 1193 in Monroe, Louisiana, has found a successful combination of the above, earning her the 2007 Wal-Mart Pharmacist of the Year Award.

Jenkins began working for Wal-Mart in 1996 when she was a pharmacy student at the University of Louisiana at Monroe. Through her demonstration of excellent leadership qualities, she was quickly promoted, and today, she is the pharmacy manager of Wal-Mart store 1193 and also serves as pharmacy area manager in her northeast Louisiana district. Her responsibilities include ensuring proper staffing to guarantee the utmost customer service, teaching and leading her associates by example, handling personnel issues, as well as the everyday pharmacy duties of filling prescriptions, performing drug reviews, and counseling patients.

Amanda Jenkins

In addition to her day-to-day responsibilities, Jenkins manages to find time to be an outstanding member of her community through volunteer work in various organizations. For example, Jenkins organized and hosted the "Market 242 Shots for Tots Bowling Tournament," attended the statewide Shots for Tots event in New Orleans, and represented Wal-Mart in an informational booth at the event. Perhaps one of her most outstanding efforts was represented by a fundraiser for the Northeast Louisiana Food Bank, where she organized the Wal-Mart Market 242 fundraiser to "adopt" 150 seniors on the food bank waiting list. Through this fundraiser, she actually motivated associates at 11 other stores in her market by challenging their fundraising efforts—in total, the stores in her market raised $36,000 in 2 weeks for the local food banks. In fact, enough money was left over to help begin a back-pack program for needy children to receive weekly food assistance.

Leading by Example

Through all of her volunteer efforts, Jenkins also is the driving force to get other associates involved and passionate about the cause, mostly by her motto—always lead by example. "I love people and love to lead by example," said Jenkins. "One thing I have learned is that leading by example is the best way to lead, and it causes your followers to want to follow and makes them become leaders themselves."

Jenkins' Wal-Mart supervisors recognized this spirit in her from the beginning. Her success in these endeavors, as well as her dependability and leadership as pharmacy manager, prompted District Manager Devin Richardson to nominate Jenkins for the community pharmacist award. "Amanda has really become my go-to person for any help that I need in the district," said Richardson. Robbie Henslee, Market 242 manager, adds, "Amanda is not only an asset to store 1193, but she is making a tremendous impact throughout the entire Market?. Amanda truly exemplifies what a good corporate citizen should be."

Jenkins was presented the Wal-Mart Community Pharmacist of the Year Award at the Wal-Mart annual meeting on January 23, 2008, in Kansas City, Kansas. This was an honor for her to be chosen from the 260 pharmacists who were nominated for the community pharmacist award (one pharmacist is selected from each district), and to be invited to the annual meeting.

Mike Adloo, divisional manager for the Southeast, presented Jenkins with the award and was amazed at her ability to multitask in her roles as mom, wife, daughter, and pharmacy manager, and to do all of these extremely well. "Three things were very evident to me—her enthusiasm, attitude, and smile," Adloo said. "I can see how she motivates others to get things done, because she grabs you in to accomplish a wide range of things. It is amazing how influential and unforgettable she is—you will never forget her."

Making an Impact

Jenkins was very excited to receive the Wal-Mart Community Pharmacist of the Year Award. She takes her role as pharmacist very seriously but enjoys it tremendously because of the impact she has on patients. "With every customer I counsel and every hand I shake, I hope that I am making my mark on this earth. Working as a pharmacist for Wal-Mart just capitalizes on that. Wal-Mart is a company that focuses on making lives better, and that is what I love about the company," she said.