2015 Next-Generation Pharmacist Awards: Meet the Winners!

Here are all the winners in 11 categories for the 2015 Next-Generation Pharmacist® Awards!

The Next-Generation Pharmacist® Awards is a national program that salutes pharmacy professionals who are defining the industry’s future. Now in its sixth year, Pharmacy Times and Parata Systems, cofounders of this prestigious awards program, recognize pharmacy leaders across a wide range of practice settings who embody the innovation and inspiration in pharmacy and the future vision of the profession.

Here are all the winners in 11 categories for the 2015 Next-Generation Pharmacist® Awards! We congratulate these outstanding winners!

Visit www.nextgenerationpharmacist.com for details.

2015 Civic Leader of the Year

Walgreens CoOakland Park, FL

Since losing a number of friends and acquaintances to HIV/AIDS in the 1980s and 1990s, George Kress, RPh, AAHIVP, has dedicated himself to fighting the disease in his capacity as a pharmacist. Using his position to advocate on behalf of affected patients, Kress educates elected officials and other pharmacists not only on the dangers of HIV/AIDS, but also on the role that pharmacists can play in preventing and treating the disease.

In an effort to improve medication adherence among patients who have HIV/AIDS, Kress has provided counselling services and helped to established programs to reduce financial barriers to essential treatment. Additionally, he has partnered with the local Pride Center to administer weekly HIV testing in his office, and he oversees a program that provides free azidothymidine to HIVpositive mothers to prevent them from passing the disease to their children during birth.

“Acting as a clinical pharmacist, patient advocate, teacher, lobbyist, community liaison, and activist, he has impacted lives and bettered clinical outcomes for scores of patients,” he nominator wrote. “Aware of the special challenges those who are HIV-positive face, he uses the practice of pharmacy to treat patients as a whole.”

2015 Entrepreneur of the Year

Phillip LaFoy, DPh, is a pharmacist and entrepreneur who chooses to lead by example. As the president and co-owner of Blount Discount Pharmacy, Dr. LaFoy prefers to spend his time on the pharmacy floor, working alongside his employees and filling prescriptions. Driven by his belief that he should always be aware of what is going on around him so that he never misses an opportunity to serve, Dr. LaFoy takes particular joy in personally assisting patients and ensuring that their specific needs are met.

Under Dr. LaFoy’s vision to improve his patients’ health, Blount Discount Pharmacy has recently begun to provide medication therapy management services. Additionally, Dr. LaFoy has worked toward providing treatment to specialty patients, opening Blount Specialty Pharmacy in 2013.

In recognition of his commitment to patient health and safety, Dr. LaFoy was named the winner of the 2013 NCPA Prescription Drug Safety Award, an achievement that was formally honored by the Tennessee State Senate.

“Mr. LaFoy is a true entrepreneur in pharmacy and has dedicated his life to the profession,” his nominator wrote. “He is always working hard for the independent pharmacy cause.”

2015 Future Pharmacist of the Year

Ryan Lampien, a student at the University of the Incarnate Word, has also successfully served his country in the United States Army for more than 21 years as a pharmacy technician. In this capacity, he expanded the role by successfully integrating technicians into “Code Blue” teams, where they created prepacked trauma boxes. This initiative saved many lives.

Having earned the trust of his supervisors, Lampien was afforded the opportunity to assume leadership roles normally reserved for pharmacists. His active involvement in the Multi- Service Formulary Management Team yielded significant cost savings, efficient inventory utilization, and cost-effective formulary options.

His most noteworthy assignment was as an instructor in the US Army Pharmacy Specialist Training Program. During his tenure, he developed and published the curriculum that is currently used to train all military pharmacy technicians serving in the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard.

Lampien’s “compassion for the profession is evident in everything he aspires to achieve, and his impact to pharmacy expands across the globe,” his nominator wrote.

2015 Health-System Pharmacist of the Year

As leader of the Ambulatory Medication Disease Management Program in his health system, Michael Evans, RPh, BS, oversees and support programs for chronic disease management, anticoagulation and oncology, and pain management. Seventy-one percent of the patients in these programs have reached their recognized therapeutic goal for their disease states, and medication adherence levels are greater than 80%. During Evans’ leadership tenure, he has also developed collaborative practice agreements with physicians and technology and documentation methods to support a feedback mechanism to both physicians and patients.

“Mike’s contributions have led to excellent outcomes for patients: the pain therapy program has given patients better pain control, diabetic patients with previously uncontrolled A1C3 have gotten within range, and cancer patients with medication adverse effects have been managed successfully,” his nominator wrote.

According to his nominator, Evans’ contributions are best reflected by the patient feedback he’s received, including, “I was taking 30 or so medications until I was enrolled in the medication therapy management program. Now I take 16, feel better, and know why I’m taking them.”

2015 Lifetime Leadership

Over the course of a distinguished career, William Sheridan, RPh, has done much to elevate the role of the pharmacist. A retired pharmacy merchandiser for the Kroger Company, Sheridan hoped to transform the 121 pharmacies in the Columbus, Ohio, division of Kroger into community health centers. As a result of his efforts, the pharmacies in his division became among the first in the country to offer walk-in immunizations, in addition to providing patients with wellness screenings, health coaching, and medication therapy management (MTM) services.

Wishing to grant patients convenient access to additional health services, Sheridan instituted nurse practitioner clinics adjacent to the pharmacies and hired a dietitian to develop wellness programs that promoted healthy eating. Additionally, he helped to establish one of the nation’s first off-site prescription refill centers, giving his pharmacists more time to focus on providing direct patient care. He then worked with the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy to create rules and regulations regarding the refill center, which were later implemented throughout the country.

“Bill’s forward-thinking vision for pharmacy practice is apparent in all aspects of his career,” his nominator wrote.

2015 Military Pharmacist of the Year

Maj. David Jarnot, PharmD, BCACP, has distinguished himself through his service as a pharmacist in the United States Air Force (USAF). As the pharmacy flight commander at Hill Air Force Base in Utah, Maj. Jarnot sought to expand pharmacy services at the base by spearheading an effort to establish a nearby satellite pharmacy. Not only was the project completed in record time under Maj. Jarnot’s direction, but the expansion succeeded at reducing patient wait times by 50% while increasing prescription volume.

Maj. Jarnot was later selected to lead the Air Force Pharmacy Practice Subject Interest Group, a position that enabled him to help standardize pharmacy practices across the Air Force. His leadership was also recognized by other Air Force pharmacists when he was chosen as the vice president of the Society of Air Force Pharmacy in 2014 and elected as the president of the organization in 2015.

“Maj. Jarnot’s vision is to drive pharmacy innovation to maximize patient safety,” his nominator wrote. “He has embraced the opportunities provided by his service in the USAF to provide true world-class pharmacy care to our nation’s active duty, retirees, and family members.”

2015 Patient Care Provider of the Year

Jack Dunn, RPh, has been constantly driven by his passion for providing exceptional patient care. The owner of Jasper Drugs in Jasper, Georgia, Dunn takes an individualized approach to patient care by speaking to each patient personally about their health and working with them to uncover the root causes of their problems. A major proponent of education, he also teaches 2 classes a month on diabetes, one at his pharmacy and the other at a senior care home, in addition to training pharmacy technicians at a local college.

For his many accomplishments as an independent pharmacy owner, Dunn was recognized as the 2014 National Community Pharmacists Association William B. Simmons Independent Pharmacist of the Year. Additionally, Dunn served as president of the Georgia Pharmacy Association from 2011 to 2012 before taking on the position of chairman of the board.

“Jack provides care far above and beyond the average pharmacist’s practice,” his nominator wrote. “He has many stories of how he has changed the lives of his patients with little gestures, taking a few minutes more to hear their concerns and just being a trusted member of the heath care community.”

2015 Rising Star of the Year

Evan Schnur, PharmD, is an outstanding young pharmacist who has already made a substantial impact in the industry. His research initiatives, including the role of pharmacists and pharmacies in collaboration with patient-centered medical homes and accountable care organizations, have made a difference in advancing the role of pharmacy in patient care. This, as he envisages, includes strong partnerships with pharmacies and community settings.

Dr. Schnur has worked to promote the role of pharmacists through advocacy. He has attended many Capitol Hill fly-ins to advocate for both provider status legislation and expanded medication-therapy management in Medicare. Having been the featured speaker at the student program of RxIMPACT Day, he has actively encouraged and motivated students to pursue advocacy throughout their pharmacy careers.

Among his many achievements, he was also the first pharmacist in the United States to achieve the National Committee for Quality Assurance designation of Patient Centered Medical Home—Certified Content Expert.

“I have no doubt that Evan will continue to make an impact on the pharmacy profession for years to come,” his nominator wrote.

2015 Specialty Pharmacist of the Year

From the beginning of his career, Chris Williams, PharmD, understood specialty pharmacy to be a critical area for advancing patient care. Dr. Williams has been with the Manatee County Health Plan for nearly 6 years, working as a pharmacy advocate and serving as the bridge between the patient, the health plan, and insurers. Most importantly, he has provided greater visibility to gaps in care within the specialty pharmacy benefit.

Dr. Williams comes from a small farming community in Florida, where he learned the value of hard work. He started his career in pharmacy as a retail pharmacist and quickly learned the value of customer service,—which he considers to be among his best qualities. He helped the Health Plan win a PBMI Rx Innovation Award, and under his guidance, Manatee County is now consistently recognized for its innovative wellness programs and incentives.

His most substantial impact has come from the pharmacist— patient relationships he has developed. He consistently researches his patients’ diseases states and educates them on lifestyle factors, supplements, and new drugs in the pipeline.

“For many patients, he was there for them when they were first diagnosed,” his nomination read.

2015 Technician of the Year

Through her experience and expertise, Verender Gail Brown, BS, RPhT, CPhT, has demonstrated the value that pharmacy technicians bring to both patients and pharmacists. Firmly believing that pharmacy technicians play an integral role as members of the health care team, Brown helped to develop and implement a program that enabled technicians to assist pharmacists in providing medication therapy management services to patients. As a pharmacy educator, she is equally passionate about passing her knowledge on to future pharmacy technicians in high school and college settings, with a number of her students later going on to become pharmacists.

In honor of her efforts to elevate the technician profession, Brown was chosen as the inaugural recipient of the Florida Pharmacy Association’s Technician of the Year Award in 2008. She was also recognized as the 2011 Technician of the Year by the Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

“Gail’s commitment and vision to the role of pharmacy technician brings a renewed sense of professionalism to technicians of all capabilities,” her nominator wrote. “She has worked diligently in all of her pharmacy roles to support ongoing development for technician roles.”

2015 Technology Innovator of the Year

CEO, VUCA HealthLake Mary, FL

David Medvedeff, PharmD, MBA, believes pharmacy practice will inevitably include accessing and managing large volumes of data—both about the patient and the medication regimen.

Dr. Medvedeff has dedicated his career to enhancing the patient experience. In his current capacity, he conceptualized an entirely new way for patients and families to access information about their medications: he developed and has maintained a video library of more than 2500 medication-specific scripted videos that, via a QR code, relay the most important information directly from a prescription label and can be accessed by anyone at any time.

The solution developed by Dr. Medvedeff and his team not only focuses on patients from a language and literacy perspective, but also supports pharmacy practice by minimizing the time and expense committed to “dispensing paper.” His vision is changing the medication information access paradigm by creating a digital experience to support patients.

“Never before has there been a more thoughtful approach…with David’s skillful execution, pharmacies will save thousands of dollars per year while patients and families receive a more engaging form of patient information,” his nominator wrote.