Women Leading Changes in Pharmacy


Women industry leaders are making changes for pharmacy.

There is a growing number of women who are assuming leadership roles and driving change that will impact generations of pharmacists to come. We sat down recently with 3 such women who are thought leaders and changemakers within the pharmacy profession:

• Theresa Tolle, BPharm, who is owner and pharmacist of Bay Street Pharmacy

• DeAnn Mullins, BPharm, CDE, who is co-owner and pharmacist of Mullin’s Pharmacy

• Erin L. Albert, MBA, PharmD, JD, PAHM, founder of Pharm, LLC

• Moderator: Eden Sulzer, director of the Women and Pharmacy initiative at Cardinal Health

Left to right: Theresa Tolle, DeAnn Mullins, Erin L. Albert, and Eden Sulzer

What are some steps you, personally, are taking to lead change in your local community, and at the national/profession level as well?

Theresa: I have been extremely involved in associations most of my career. I currently serve on the Cardinal Health National Retail Advisory Board, and I am incoming Trustee for the American Pharmacists Association. I am also active with NCPA and the Florida Pharmacy Association, particularly with legislative activities and political action committees. In other words, I do my best to practice what I preach; I try to serve my profession and take steps to make it better for patients and pharmacists.

In addition, I would say my No. 1 advocacy goal is to achieve provider status for pharmacists. This will impact our profession in countless positive ways and allow us to prove the impact we can make in the healthcare of our communities.

DeAnn: Nationally, I’ve just completed a year as NCPA president and will continue to serve on the board of directors for NCPA and other various advisory boards.

In Florida, I’m stepping up to become a luminary in establishing and growing the CPESN Network, which I believe, is the solution to many of our economic challenges.

Locally, I often say that my daughters are my best and most important work in making the world a better place. Better communities happen when you populate them with better humans. My best advice for leading change: Perfection is the enemy of good, so do what you love and believe that you can make a difference.

Erin: In 2017, I was president of the Indiana Chapter of Healthcare Businesswomen's Association. I ensured we honored men (called them manbassadors) and women in our state who are supporting gender parity in healthcare, and who are innovative leaders.

Also, women in Indiana aren't speaking much on social media; so, I'm co-founder of an educational series called Social Media Dames. Along with my co-founder, Amy Stark (who is not a pharmacist, but a digital maven), we can help all women raise their voices on social media channels. We'd love to spread that educational platform to other cities and states in 2018 as we turn 5 this year!

From 2015 to 2017, I served on the national board of the American Society for Pharmacy Law. We created a first-ever benchmarking survey of pharmacy law and ethics educators in schools of pharmacy in the US, and shared the inaugural survey results with our members in 2017. Last, I serve the Pharmacy Podcast Network as a co-host, since 2016, and focus specifically on career development, entrepreneurship, women in leadership, and healthcare IT/big data topics. That bleeds into my writing over at Pharmacy Times/Pharmacy Careers as well.

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