Distinguished Alumni Honorees
Nova Southeastern University Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award salutes outstanding graduates and is the highest and most prestigious honor that NSU bestows upon its graduates. The program recognizes alumni who have realized their potential around the world by demonstrating a record of distinguished service and extraordinary achievement in a particular profession, discipline, organization, or community cause. Join us in congratulating our alumni who have made outstanding contributions to the profession and/or community, have great pride for their alma mater, and are committed to advancing NSU's values and goals.
Distinguished Alumni Achievement Honorees
Click on photo or name to display a short biography below the set of photos...
Betty J. Harris, Pharm.D.
Betty J. Harris received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 1994. She is also a graduate of the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (formerly Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science). Dr. Harris is Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice at Husson University School of Pharmacy in Bangor Maine, and former Assistant Dean of Experiential Education and Student Services at NSU's College of Pharmacy. Dr. Harris joined academia after an extensive career in long term care and specialty pharmacy care with Colonial Drugs and PharMerica. Prior to joining PharMerica, Dr. Harris practiced in community chain pharmacy and worked part-time in hospital settings.
Dr. Harris is currently serving as the Treasurer of the Florida Pharmacy Association and Chair of the Policy Affairs Committee for American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy. Dr. Harris was appointed to the ACPE Board of Directors by American Pharmacist Association and served as a member for six years. She also served as Trustee, Speaker of the House of Delegates, and the policy and reference committees for the American Pharmacist Association. She also served as past president and past speaker House of Delegates of the Florida Pharmacy Association and past president and a trustee for the Florida Pharmacy Foundation. Dr. Betty J. Harris was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 1998.
Elena Avello, Pharm.D.
Elena Avello received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 1993. Dr. Avello graduated with Honors and was the recipient of the Doctor of Pharmacy Award for Excellence in Clinical Pharmacy Rotations. Upon her graduation she served as Clinical Pharmacy Coordinator, member of the Surgery Team, and ran the pharmacokinetic service for all the patients in a 250-bed hospital.
Dr. Avello has been in the pharmaceutical industry and has worked as a Medical Science Liaison and Regional Scientific Director since 1995 building relationships with key opinion leaders in the gastroenterology and rheumatology therapeutic areas. She has collaborated with researchers on investigator initiated studies and has delivered many scientific presentations to managed-care organizations. In addition, Dr. Avello has received many awards sponsored by the pharmaceutical industry including the Circle of Excellence (President's Choice) award in 2001 and 2003 as well as the Distinguished Medical Science Liaison award in 2006.
Dr. Avello has actively served on the COP Pharmacy Admissions Committee; provided support for the COP Physical Assessment in Patient Care Management; and has served as a preceptor for the COP pharmacy students. Dr. Avello is a member of the Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacists, American College of Gastroenterology, American Gastroenterological Association, and Florida Gastroenterology Society. Dr. Elena Avello was the recipient of NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 1999.
Joy J. Marcus, Pharm.D.
Joy J. Marcus received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Southeastern College of Pharmacy in 1992. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Science in Administration from St. Thomas University.Dr. Marcus comes from a long line of pharmacists and grew up in a pharmacy so she learned from an early age the importance of the community pharmacist and patient care.
Dr. Marcus is president and owner of Quest for Health Inc., in Miami - a corporation dedicated to health assessing, screening, disease state management, and consultation. Presently, she also works for Seaview Research, in Miami, and Soliant, based out of Orlando. She is also a consulting pharmacist. Dr. Marcus is a past president and speaker of the House of Delegates for the Florida Pharmacy Association and instituted the association's Pharmacist Health Fair and Legislative Day which showcases the knowledge and services the pharmacists can provide as well as the opportunity to speak with Legislators about pharmacy and patient care issues.
Dr. Marcus has served as clinical affiliate assistant professor as well as assistant professor and instructor of pharmaceutics and on a number of committees for NSU's College of Pharmacy. She also served as a professor at St. Thomas University and as an associate professor and associate dean at Miami Dade Community College. Dr. Marcus has been honored with numerous awards and recognitions from students and their organizations of several pharmacy schools for her achievements and involvement with future pharmacists. Among them, American Pharmacist Association Fellow, the Merck Outstanding Achievement in the Profession of Florida, Bristol Myers Squibb Pharmacy leadership award, McKesson President's Award and Hoechst Marion Distinguished Young Pharmacist Award. She is listed in several Marquis Who's Who and the Women in Pharmacy Leadership publications and has written a historical book about apothecary. Dr. Joy Marcus was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2000.
Thomas Anthony Bohan, Pharm.D.
Thomas Anthony Bohan received his Bachelor of Science Pharmacy degree from NSU's College of Pharmacy in 1994.Dr. Bohan currently serves as a consultant pharmacist for OmniCare Pharmacy in Weston. He is also a licensed registered pharmacist and is certified in compounding. Dr. Bohan has held several positions in retail chain pharmacy for Target Pharmacy, CVS Pharmacy, and Publix. She also served as staff pharmacist for Memorial Hospital, Pembroke. Dr. Bohan holds professional affiliations in pharmacy organizations, including the Florida Pharmacists Association, the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists,and the Broward county Pharmacy Association. He has served as preceptor for Palm Beach Atlantic University and for NSU's College of Pharmacy students in training for almost fifteen years. Dr. Thomas A. Bohan was the recipient of the NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2003.
Richard Finkel, Pharm.D.
Richard Finkel received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Southeastern College of Pharmacy in 1992. Currently, Dr. Finkel is a consultant pharmacist for Vitas Hospice in Miami, president of Prescription Drug Foundation Pharmacy in North Miami Beach for over forty years, and Clinical Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences teaching for NSU's College of Pharmacy for almost twenty years. He was in the retail pharmacy chain pharmacy field until he purchased his community pharmacy.
Dr. Finkel has published and co-authored several books in the English and Spanish languages and has reviewed book articles for the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. He served as collaborating editor for Lippincott's Illustrated Reviews:Pharmacology 5th edition.Dr. Finkel has received numerous honors and has been recognized extensively by NSU. He was the recipient of the Golden Apple Award for Teaching Excellence five times.He was also the Outstanding Teacher Finalist for NSU's College of Pharmacy in recognition of his excellence and innovation in teaching. Dr. Finkel has actively participated on numerous committees for the College of Pharmacy and is an active member of the Florida Pharmacy Association. He has been an integral team member of the College of Pharmacy's annual alumni campaign.
Dr. Finkel received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Florida's College of Pharmacy. He served as a registered pharmacist while on active duty for the United States Army.He has held academic positions.He has also served as a pharmaceutical representative for McNeil Laboratories. Dr. Richard Finkel was the recipient of the NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2004.
John Michael O'Brien, Pharm.D.
John Michael O'Brien received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Southeastern College of Pharmacy in 2000.Dr. O'Brien also has a Master of Public Health degree from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and studied pharmacy and public policy at the University of Florida and broadcast journalism at St. Gregory's College. Currently, Dr. O'Brien is Director of Field Operations at the CMS Innovation Center. In this capacity, Dr. O'Brien engages partners to achieve the bold aims of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services' Partnership for Patients and Million Hearts initiatives. He also leads the Innovation Center's work on improving medication adherence.
Prior to joining the Administration, Dr. O'Brien was a professor of clinical and administrative sciences at the College of Notre Dame School of Pharmacy and a health policy fellow in the United States Senate. Dr. O'Brien has held a variety of leadership positions in pharmacy and the pharmaceutical industry, and completed the American Society of Health System Pharmacists Executive Residency, the American Medical Student Association Health Policy Fellowship, and the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists Cano Legislative Internship. He has written a number of publications related to health policy and safe medication use, and his work has been featured in Business Week, Kaiser Health News, and Good Morning America Health. Dr. John Michael O'Brien is a founding member of the College of Pharmacy Dean's Advisory Council and was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Award in 2005.
Geneen Graber-Maxwell received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 1996. Dr. Graber-Maxwell is chief executive officer at Dr G's Pharmacy in Lauderdale by the Sea in Ft. Lauderdale. She graduated NSU's COP fifteen years ago as the youngest student in the program. She subsequently completed a Disease Management and Pharmacoeconomic Research Fellowship with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, University of California Los Angeles, RAND Graduate Institute and Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation.
Dr. Graber-Maxwell worked her way up in the pharmaceutical industry and ultimately earned a position on the management team for Lotrel overseeing their research, medical education, public relations and sales and marketing efforts.After five years in the pharmaceutical industry, Dr Graber-Maxwell opened her own retail pharmacy - Dr. G's Pharmacy – and will celebrate its 10th year anniversary this year. Dr. Graber-Maxwell continues to be active in various research capacities with a variety of pharmaceutical companies and health organizations such as the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research. Dr Graber-Maxwell has a monthly newspaper column of pharmacy advice -"Pharmacy Corner: Ask Dr G."
Dr Graber-Maxwell has published many research articles, book chapters, spoken nationally and internationally, and has received numerous awards within the pharmacy professions. She has also served as adjunct clinical and business professors for NSU's College of Pharmacy in Davie and Saint Joseph's University's Executive MBA program in Pennsylvania. Dr Graber-Maxwell will continue expanding her career in pharmacy as a pharmacist; a business owner; a teacher; and the mother of potential future pharmacists. Dr. Geneen Graber-Maxwell was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2006.
Patrick S. Hawthorne, Pharm.D.
Patrick S. Hawthorne received his Bachelor of Science degree from NSUs College of Pharmacy in 1994. Dr. Hawthorne is currently the Market Vice-President for Walgreen's Ohio market overseeing two hundred forty-seven locations. He has worked for the Walgreen Corporation for over twenty-seven years and has fulfilled many different administrative roles in management, operational, regulatory, and quality environment providing collaborative oversight for all 7,500.community drug locations nation-wide.
Dr. Hawthorne is a seasoned executive with a passion for community service and patient care. As a community pharmacist for over seventeen years, Dr. Hawthorne has worked in multiple leadership positions to help deliver quality patient care in a community environment. He has worked with numerous organizations to advance patient care and improve community health. Dr. Hawthorne has donated a significant portion of his time delivering "hands on" patient care initiatives to advance the profession of pharmacy with his education and experience. Dr. Patrick Hawthorne is a founding member of the College of Pharmacy Dean's Advisory Council and the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2007.
Nilda Banchs-Sandoval, Pharm.D.
Nilda Banchs-Sandoval received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2001. Dr. Banchs-Sandoval has been owner and president of Servi-Pharma, Inc. (doing business as Farmácia el Tuque) in Ponce, Puerto Rico for over 20 years. Dr. Banchs-Sandoval has also performed as preceptor for Pharm Tech students and NSU's College of Pharmacy Pharm.D. candidates in their early clerkship since 2001.
Dr. Banchs-Sandoval is very active in numerous healthcare organizations. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Puerto Rico Cancer and Health Foundation where she also heads their fund raising campaigns. She is also a member of the Puerto Rico State Association and their directives. Dr. Banchs-Sandoval serves her communities through her participation in radio programs dealing with health issues and participates in outreach activities for the public which she also develops and executes.
Dr. Banchs-Sandoval has received many prestigious awards, including: the Innovative Pharmacist Award from DuPont; the Ceiba Award for Commerce from the Ponce and South Chamber of Commerce of Puerto Rico; and the 2006 Bowl of Hygeia from Wyeth /Ayerst. Dr. Nilda Banchs-Sandoval was the recipient of NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement award in 2008.
Cristina Fueyo-Medina, Pharm.D.
Cristina Fueyo-Medina received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2000. Dr. Fueyo-Medina is Manager of Professional and College Relations at CVS Caremark, for Alabama, Florida and Puerto Rico. She began her community pharmacy career at CVS/pharmacy prior to graduation as a community pharmacist; a staff pharmacist; and pharmacy manager, before becoming a District Pharmacy Supervisor with CVS/pharmacy. Dr. Fueyo-Medina was promoted to her current role in 2005 where she oversees the professional relationships with nine colleges of pharmacy in Alabama, Florida and Puerto Rico. She is also accountable for the development and strategy of the pharmacy intern program at CVS/pharmacy in her respective geographical areas. Dr. Fueyo-Medina works very closely with the schools of pharmacy to create internship sites and serves as the liaison between CVS/pharmacy and professional pharmacy associations.
Dr. Fueyo-Medina serves on dean advisory committees for Palm Beach Atlantic University, University of Florida, and Florida A&M University. She is also a member of the National Advisory Board for the pharmacy journal: Drug Topics. She serves actively on the Admissions Committee for the College of Pharmacy. Dr. Cristina Fueyo-Medina is a founding member of the College of Pharmacy Dean's Advisory Council and was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2009.
Michael Kaplan, Pharm.D.,R.Ph., FASCP
Michael Kaplan received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 1999. Dr. Kaplan received a Bachelor of Science degree in Pharmacy from the University of Michigan and a Masters in Business Administration from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He has been a licensed consultant pharmacist in Florida since 1986. Dr. Kaplan has been owner & president, Medic Pharmacy in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida for over twenty-five years.
Dr. Kaplan is a pharmacist, an entrepreneur, and a community advocate. He has trained hundreds of people to work as med techs in assisted living facilities. He presents pharmacy care and health education programs to numerous community-based area senior citizen groups. His passion for serving seniors will further drive his future focus on individuals who require extensive pharmacy services. Dr. Kaplan has been a dedicated preceptor for NSU's College of Pharmacy since 1998 and has provided training to pharmacy students in geriatrics and advanced geriatrics.
Dr. Kaplan is a member of Rho Chi National Pharmacy Honorary and Beta Gamma Sigma National Business Honorary. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists and serves as a consultant pharmacist for Vitas Hospice Care and Henderson Behavioral Health Crisis Stabilization Unit. Dr. Kaplan supports various community organizations and is very active with NSU. He, and his wife, Gail, are Founding and Life members of the NSU Alvin Sherman Library and contributed generously to the Dale Chihuly Sculpture commissioned for the Alvin Sherman Library.Most recently, Dr. Kaplan was honored for their lifetime of philanthropy to the South Florida community by CareSource of Florida. Dr. Michael Kaplan is a founding member of the College of Pharmacy Dean's Advisory Council and was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Award in 2010.
Deborah Brown, M.S., Pharm.D., C.Ph.
Deborah Brown received NSU's College of Pharmacy Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2000. Dr. Brow has a Pharmaceutical Sciences from Auburn University and a Masters in Management from Troy State University. Dr. Deborah Brown has been in hospital pharmacy leadership positions for over 30 years. Dr. Brown is Market Director of Pharmacy and Pharmacy Consultant for Cardinal Healthcare in Tampa for the state of Florida and Louisiana. She joined Cardinal Health in 1995 as the Pharmacy Director at Doctors Hospital of Sarasota. Dr. Brown has held several positions while working at Cardinal Health, Director of Pharmacy, District Manager. Brown previously worked for HCA at Brandon Regional Hospital for 16 years.
Dr. Brown has received numerous awards, including Pharmacist of the Year from the Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacist, Meritorious Service Award, Outgoing President's Award, Bristol-Myers-Squibb Leadership Award, Merck, Outstanding Achievement in the Profession of Pharmacy, New Director of the Year and Clinical Pharmacy of the Year, Owen Healthcare, and a member of the PHI Lambda Sigma Leadership Society. She has also held important leadership positions within the State Pharmacy Professional organization. She is involved in the community with the American Heart Association as a member of the Circle of Red for the Go Red for Women Luncheon, as well as the Heart Walk. She travels internationally to meet with cardiologists in other countries to learn about healthcare in their countries. She is also the Senior Warden and vestry member of Holy Innocents' Episcopal Church.
Dr. Brown has been a preceptor for students at NSU's College of Pharmacy, LECOM, Mercer, and Florida A&M. She trains Managers in Training to become Pharmacy Directors in a year-long program provided by Cardinal Health. She also teaches the Institutional and Surgical Center Consulting portion of NSU's College of Pharmacy Initial Consultant Pharmacist License Continuing Pharmacy Education program, and serves as a preceptor for new consultants to receive their license. Dr. Deborah Brown was the recipient of the NSU Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2011.
Venessa S. Price, Pharm.D.
Venessa S. Price received NSU's College of Pharmacy (COP) Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 1998. Currently, Price is Director of Pharmacy Services at Jackson Memorial Hospital, Miami, FL. Her interest in pharmacy started in the late 80's working as a pharmacy technician. After receiving her PharmD degree, Price completed the American Society of Health System Pharmacists Accredited Pharmacy Practice Residency at New England Medical Center in Boston, MA.
Price's professional experience reflects the wide array of professions in pharmacy representing her motivation to continually grow and advance professionally. Price's roles as a Clinical Pharmacist for Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates and Jackson Memorial Hospital, as clinical education consultant for Pfizer, Inc., and as Clinical Coordinator for North Broward Medical Center, focused on clinical initiatives, formulary and regulatory adherence, cost containment strategies, and specialization in Nephrology and Geriatrics for healthcare settings and practitioners.
Price has been recognized for her outstanding career accomplishments, her contributions to our diverse communities, the leadership roles she has played in her professional and personal life, and for the critical roles she has played for the College. Over the years, Price has been extensively involved with teaching and mentoring COP students, as well as with alumni and practicing pharmacy professionals within the COP's continuing education programs.
Price is a member of the Florida Medicaid Drug Utilization Review Board and University Health System Consortium, Pharmacy Practice Advancement Committee. She is currently President of the Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacists (FSHP). Price was the recipient of NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2012.
Osmel Delgado, Pharm.D.
Osmel Delgado received NSU's College of Pharmacy (COP) Doctor of Pharmacy degree in 2002. Currently, Delgado is Administrative Director, Clinical Operations at Cleveland Clinic Florida. As his personal statement, Delgado notes that "it is an honor and a privilege to be a practicing pharmacist within the state of Florida" and be able to be a "part of the movement to shape our profession's future." He has a keen interest in positioning the practice of pharmacy on the forefront of the impending healthcare reform initiative, such as pushing forward the efforts on provider status, in order to emphasize the impact pharmacists can make with effective drug cost management. Delgado goes on to say, "Being a Nova alumnus has provided me the opportunity to connect with other Nova alumni along with leaders across the State to position pharmacists as the being the best in practicing safe, effective, efficient, accountable, and evidence-based care for all health-system patients."
Delgado is a member of the NSU COP Experiential Quality Assurance Advisory Board; American Society for Health System Pharmacists' (ASHP) Section Advisory Group on Manager Development and is an Florida Society of Health System Pharmacists' (FSHP) Director-at-large on the Board of Directors; he was the past Vice Chair for FSHP's Organizational Affairs Council. He is also past Chairman of the Broward County Healthcare Coalition Pharmacy Subcommittee for Emergency Operations and past President of the Southeast Society of Health System Pharmacists (SESHSP). He has been honored with the South Florida Business Leader, Mover & Shaker Award and the FSHP's Excellence in Pharmacy Leadership Award. Delgado was the recipient of NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2013.
Richard Ashworth, Pharm.D.
Richard Ashworth, Pharm.D., is President of Retail and Pharmacy Operations for Walgreens Company. He has 20+ years of experience in operations, healthcare, clinical management, pharmacy benefit management, and retail pharmacy. Dr. Ashworth has an exemplary history of serving the profession of pharmacy while rapidly advancing in his career. His professionalism, respect for diversity, and entrepreneurial skills have been recognized by executives at Walgreens. Some of his past key positions have included developing the healthcare strategy for Boots United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. Dr. Ashworth has demonstrated a great commitment to his community serving in organizations that care for battered women and teens. Dr. Ashworth is a 1999 graduate of NSUs College of Pharmacy and is a member of the COP Deans Advisory Board. Dr. Ashworth is the COPs 2014 Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni honoree.
Christopher Lynch, Pharm.D., MEd.
A native of Bradenton, Florida, Dr. Christopher Lynch enlisted in the U.S. Navy on December 4, 1986 at the age of seventeen. He attended Basic Training and Radioman-School at Naval Training Center, San Diego, California, and was assigned to sea duty aboard the USS FORRESTAL. Upon completion of his initial enlistment, he entered into the U.S. Naval Reserves. In 1993, Dr. Lynch entered Pharmacy School at the North Miami Beach Campus of Nova Southeastern University. He was subsequently selected for the Navys Health Services Collegiate Program (HSCP) which placed him back on active duty service while finishing his studies. After graduating in 1997 with his Doctor of Pharmacy degree, he was commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Medical Service Corps. Dr. Lynch's first assignment as a pharmacy officer was at Naval Hospital Pensacola, Florida where he served in a multitude of clinical and leadership roles. He was then assigned to Naval Branch Health Clinic Mayport, Florida where he was promoted to Lieutenant Commander and served as the Director of Ancillary Services, including the pharmacy department. In 2005, Dr. Lynch was competitively selected for the Navys Duty-Under-Instruction (DUINS) program, and was the first Navy pharmacist to attend full-time training to earn a masters degree in educational leadership. Upon graduation, he was assigned to the Naval School of Health Sciences, Portsmouth, Virginia. In the summer of 2007, Dr. Lynch was deployed aboard the hospital ship USNS COMFORT in support of the Partnership for the Americas humanitarian medical training mission to 12 different Central and South American countries, serving as the head of pharmacy services for a combined military-federal and civilian pharmacy team. In 2008, he was promoted to Commander and served as the inaugural director for the newly consolidated joint-military pharmacy training program at the Medical Education and Training Campus in Ft Sam Houston, Texas. After finishing extensive tours in military academia, Dr. Lynch was assigned to both the U.S. Naval Hospital in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and served as the Director of Clinical Support Services. His final tour of duty in the Navy was as the Associate Director of Pharmacy Services at Naval Hospital Jacksonville, Florida, where he also completed the American Society of Health System Pharmacists renowned Pharmacy Leadership Academy in June of 2015. Doctor Lynch officially retired from active duty military service on October 1, 2015 to pursue a career in pharmacy academia. Doctor Lynch has earned advanced qualifications in Executive Medicine, and as an Education and Training Specialist. His personal awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (5 awards), the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and the Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal (2 awards). He has been an active member of the American Pharmacists Association, Pharmacy Technician Educators Council, as well as the Phi Lambda Sigma Pharmacy Leadership Society and Phi Delta Chi Pharmacy Fraternity. Lynch was the recipient of NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2015.
Armando Bardisa, Pharm.D.
Dr. Armando Bardisa, a pharmacist by trade and an entrepreneur at heart, founded SMP Pharmacy Solutions (formerly known as South Miami Pharmacy) located in South Florida, in 2003 in efforts to improve the quality of life for patients through personalized service. SMP is an award-winning national pharmacy that provides compounding, fertility, specialty drugs and retail services throughout the Southeast United States, becoming one of the top independent pharmacies in the country. Under the direction of Dr. Bardisa, SMP is redefining the pharmacy experience, acting as a trusted liaison between the patient, doctor’s office, drug manufacturer and insurance provider. Dr. Bardisa has an outstanding record of civic leadership. He has grown his pharmacy business and has received many awards for his notable achievements. His accolades include Top Entrepreneurs from Business Leader Magazine; Entrepreneur of The Year finalist from Ernst & Young; Bowl of Hygea Award from the American Pharmacists Association (considered one of the profession’s most prestigious awards.) His business ranked number 41 in the Top Businesses in Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Miami Beach, Florida and number 58 in the Top Health Companies. The pharmacy has been listed on Inc. 5000 as one of the fastest growing private companies in America 7 years in a row, offering customers an old-fashioned approach to pharmaceutical care with cutting-edge technology. Dr. Bardisa’s successes have been noted in many prestigious publications such as: Power Leaders in Healthcare and South Florida’s 50 Fastest Growing Companies and “Best Places to Work, South Florida Business Journal; “Top Ten Fastest-Growing, Private Specialty Pharmacies,” Drug Channels Magazine; “Top 500 Hispanic-Owned Business,” Hispanic Business Magazine; “Independent Pharmacy Superstar,” Drug Topics Magazine; and “Highest in Customer Satisfaction,” J.D. Power & Associates. Dr. Bardisa has served on the Pharmacy Development Services board of directors and is a founding member of the College of Pharmacy Dean’s Advisory Council. Bardisa was the recipient of NSU's Celebration of Excellence Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in 2016.
Profiles of Excellence
Our alumni play many critical roles in the pharmacy profession and share their accomplishments and successes with the College of Pharmacy students and fellow graduates. Thank you to all alumni who share their knowledge and experience, provide us the support and involvement crucial to execute our mission, vision, and values, while helping to develop the nation's most promising pharmacy graduates for roles as future leaders in global healthcare.
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Pharmacy Alumni Deborah Brown, M.S., Pharm.D., C.Ph., Class of 2000 Was Named a 2013 American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Fellow
Deborah Brown, M.S., Pharm.D., C.Ph., Class of 2000 was named a 2013 American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) Fellow under ASHP's Practitioner Recognition Program. The ASHP Practitioner Recognition Program is intended to recognize excellence in pharmacy practice and promote public awareness of pharmacists who have distinguished themselves in practice. Dr. Brown was recognized at 2013 ASHP Summer Meeting in Minneapolis. Dr. Brown received her B.S. in Pharmacy from the Harrison School of Pharmacy in 1976, a M.S. in Management from Troy State University in 1995, and her PharmD from Nova Southeastern University in 2000. She currently serves as market director of pharmacy (Florida, Louisiana, Texas, and Arkansas) for Cardinal Health Pharmacy Solutions. She serves on the ASHP Council on Pharmacy Management, ASHP PAC Advisory Council, ASHP delegate, and actively participates in the support of the ASHP Foundation.
Pharmacy Alumni Dionis Malo Jr., Pharm.D. Director of Pharmacy Over a Three-Hospital System
Dionis Malo Jr., Pharm.D., class of 2010, has been recently promoted to Director of Pharmacy over a three-hospital system - St Luke's Medical Center, St. Luke's Behavioral Health, and St. Luke's Tempe - in Phoenix, Arizona. Although Malo will be located in Arizona, and will continue to stay as actively involved with NSU's College of Pharmacy as he has been since graduationg in 2010. We look forward to seeing Malo in upcoming pharmacy conferences and NSU/COP alumni events. Congratulations, Dr. Malo.
Aneesh Lakhani Pharm.D., Class of 2004 Garden Drug Owner/Pharmacist
In December 2011, NSU College of Pharmacy Alumni, Aneesh Lakhani (Class of 2004) purchased his own drug store in Fort Lauderdale, Garden Drugs & Medical Supply. After 12 years of working at the Pill Box Pharmacy in Pembroke Pines he was finally able to fulfill a lifelong dream of owning his own pharmacy. Garden Drugs has served Fort Lauderdale for more than 50 years. The pharmacy has a 110 seat mom and pop breakfast and lunch cafe in addition to the pharmacy. It really gives you that old fashioned neighborhood feel with excellent customer service, a large medical supply department and full line of vitamins and over the counter products.
Lakhani have also initiated a Medication Therapy Management Program, Diabetes Education Program and Vitamin & Herb Consultations.Lakhani told us: "I am extremely proud to be a NSU Alumni and truly believe NSU has helped me achieve my dreams."
Recently the Garden Drugs & Medical Supply store had a grand re-opening party where they had several hundred customers come out to celebrate with them. During the party they offered free blood glucose and blood pressure screenings as well as consultations with Lakhani and several NSU COP Students on Disease State Management. Please stop by and visit – in person or via their website: www.gardendrug.com
Click here for more pictures.
Latrice Roebuck, Pharm.D., Class of 2006, featured in Hollywood Gazette for offering medication therapy management services in Hollywood
"Bridging the gap btween you and your health care provider, Pharmaceutical Care Associates is a new business in Hollywood that helps patients manage their medications and coordinates them with their physicians.
Dr. Latrice Roebuck, Phann D., is a licensed phannacist from Florida and a graduate of Nova Southeastern University. She currently works at a local hospital in the ICU. Roebuck is an advocate for patients who don't understand their medications, who experience hospitalizations because of their medications, and patients who have difficulty getting their prescribers to address their concerns..." Click here to read the article in the newspaper.
U.S. Navy Medical Service Corps Promotes NSU College of Pharmacy Alumni, Christopher G. Lynch, Pharm.D., M.Ed., to Commander
Christopher G. Lynch, Pharm.D., M.Ed., is congratulated by
Rear Admiral, Bob Kiser, US Navy Medical Service Corps
Christopher G. Lynch, Pharm.D., M.Ed., College of Pharmacy alumni, class of 1997, was officially promoted to Commander by Rear Admiral, Bob Kiser, Inaugural Commandant for the Military's Medical Education & Training Campus (METC), on October 7, 2011 at Ft. Sam Houston, TX. Dr. Lynch's promotion by the U.S. Navy to the rank of commander designates him as a "senior officer". Officers promoted to this rank commensurately wear a cover that has clusters of oak leafs on the brim to distinguish them from junior officers. Dr. Lynch has received numerous awards for his overall leadership and professional achievement, including four (4) Navy & Marine Corps Commendation Medals; the Navy & Marine Corps Achievement Medal; two (2) Admirals' Letter of Commendation for specific leadership actions; and (4) Commanding Officers' Letter of Commendation for the superior performance of his duties. Read more...
Gina Marie Pettineo, College of Pharmacy Alumni, 2011, Selected as "Future Pharmacist of the Year"
NSU Alumni, Gina Marie Pettineo, Pharm.D., Class of 2011, has been selected as a "Future Pharmacist of the Year" finalist for the "Next-Generation Pharmacist Awards Program." Pettineo was chosen for her leadership and service representing NSU's College of Pharmacy in national, regional, and local meetings, community events, and for maintaining the highest academic standards and participation in the classroom while a pharmacy student with a 92.14 GPA.
Pettineo served on the Student Chapter of the Florida Pharmacy Association Executive Committee and was the 2009-10 President of the American Pharmacists Association Academy of Student Pharmacists NSU Chapter. Pettineo has also been actively involved in Florida's legislative affairs, most significantly as the primary author of a resolution allowing pharmacy interns to immunize in Florida which eventually became a bill. Pettineo's advocacy exemplifies the philosophy of promoting leadership, education and training of pharmacy students to enable them to become proactive, motivated, and highly skilled future practitioners.
The Latin Chamber of Commerce of Broward County (LCCB) Scholarship Luncheon
College of Pharmacy Alumni, Licet Martel, Pharm.D., (2008) addressed attendees of the Latin Chamber of Commerce of Broward County (LCCB) Scholarship Luncheon held in May, 2011 at the Renaissance Plantation. Dr. Martel was recipient of a LCCB scholarship in 2006 in partnership with NSU's Health Professions Division (HPD) College of Pharmacy. Dr. Martel's message to 2011 LCCB scholarship recipients reinforced the importance and meaning of scholarships, life-long learning and leadership roles in their personal and professional lives. Dr. Martell shared some of her achievements made possible through the LCCB/HPD and how the scholarship experience broadened her positive impact on public health and pharmacy careers.
NSU College of Pharmacy Alumni Named The Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacists "2010 Pharmacist of the Year"
The Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacists (FSHP) named Deborah Brown, M.S., Pharm.D. C.Ph., NSU College of Pharmacy Alumni, Class of 2000, as the Florida pharmacist of the year at the society's 44th annual meeting in Orlando last month.
Brown was awarded the "2010 Pharmacist of the Year" award for her significant contributions to the practice of pharmacy in Florida as well as her outstanding performance and achievements during throughout her pharmacy career. FSHP presented her with a plaque and pin at a dinner ceremony on July 29 that kicked off the four-day meeting. The FSHP pharmacist of the year award is presented annually to a Florida pharmacist who is recognized for outstanding career performance and achievements and is selected by a special committee of past recipients.
Brown is the market director of pharmacy for Florida and Louisiana for the Pharmacy Solutions business. She is responsible for the pharmacy operations of four acute care hospitals. Brown has worked for Cardinal Health for 15 years and has previously served as an FSHP president and as a board member; currently she serves as the society's treasurer.
Anna Marie González-Wolstenholme, Pharm.D., CPH and Brian Wolstenholme, Pharm.D., CGP, FASCP - NSU College of Pharmacy Alumni Team Up to Address Medication-Related Problems
Anna Marie González-Wolstenholme, PharmD, CPH
and Brian Wolstenholme, PharmD, CGP, FASCP
both graduated from NSU's COP in 1999
Anna Marie González-Wolstenholme, PharmD, CPH and Brian Wolstenholme, PharmD, CGP, FASCP both graduated from NSU's College of Pharmacy in 1999. As a team, they have both been helping people, especially seniors, meet their health and wellness goals to reduce or eliminate medication use whenever possible.
To follow his passion, Wolstenholme has joined Senior Care Pharmacists and is president of MediSort Medication Consultants, PA, where as health and wellness coach he provides education to create awareness regarding medication-related problems. According to Wolstenholme, if categorized as a disease, medication-related problems would be the 5th-leading cause of death in the United States. He goes on to state "my practice was started to spread the word that data shows that our type of practice will save lives, improve our population's health and significantly reduce healthcare expenditures."
Wolstenholme and González-Wolstenholme help identify, resolve and prevent medication-related problems by working with patients, their caregivers, physicians and others to optimize the medication regimen for optimal outcomes. Wolstenholme is a Certified Geriatric Pharmacist, Senior Care Pharmacist, Consultant Pharmacist, and also specializes in Aging Parents and Clinical Medication Therapy Management. His other specialties include 30's, 40's, and beyond; weight loss; and cardiovascular health. González-Wolstenholme graduated with Honors from Nova Southeastern University and is licensed as both a Pharmacist and a Senior Care Pharmacist and is an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Florida College of Pharmacy.
Dr. Armando Bardisa
Mr. Brian Brito, VP Operations and Armando
Bardisa, Pharm.D., NSU Alumni, Class of 1997,
Owner & CEO, South Miami Pharmacy
Armando Bardisa, Pharm.D., NSU Class of 1997, was awarded an Honorary Masters in Business Administration from Florida International University's Chapman Graduate school of Business. The award was presented by Mr. Brian Brito, Vice President of Operations at South Miami Pharmacy to acknowledge Dr. Bardisa for his role as a pharmacist entrepreneur and role model for his business team.
For over ten years Dr. Bardisa has served as an inspirational mentor, leader, and employer for Mr. Brito. Mr. Brito's drive was greatly supported by Dr. Bardisa who inspired and guided him to return to school and complete his business degree. "Since joining the South Miami Pharmacy team in 2003, Dr. Bardisa has continually provided me the opportunity to help expand his growing business, manage new projects and develop procedures to help improve our patients' quality of life. Dr. Bardisa's leadership and vision have been indispensable for completing my graduate degree, and I thank him for this," indicates Mr. Brito.
Dr. Bardisa serves as a College of Pharmacy preceptor mentoring and training pharmacy students at South Miami Pharmacy.
Dr. Maritza Aguayo
Maritza Aguayo, Pharm.D., Class of 2009 was recently promoted to a District Manager overseeing the pharmacy operations of fourteen Navarro Discount pharmacies. On behalf of the NSU College of Pharmacy - congratulations, Dr. Aguayo!
Dr. Michael Escudero
We salut Michael Escudero, Pharm.D., c/o 2007 West Palm Beach, for his outreach to the Hispanic community of South Florida regarding health promotion and disease prevention.
Dr. Escudero will be a monthly guest speaker on Univision TV 23 - Despierta Ameríca "Pregúntale al Farmacéutico," (Ask the Pharmacist), speaking on different topics of interest addressing health concerns amongst Hispanics. He has presented on topics such as medications and your pharmacist, diabetes, healthy bones, medications and children, drug interactions, and heart disease.
You may view his presentation videos in the Spanish language on the following link: http://www.univision.com/content/channel.jhtml?secid=25636#
Dr. Eddy Blanco
Residents in Overtown Miami, received over 150 First Aid Kits on January 16, 2010, as part of Hands on Miami's Martin Luther King Day of Service thanks to Dr. Eddy Blanco, graduate of Nova Southeastern University's College of Pharmacy (Class of 2002) and co-owner of VH Pharmacy, a three generation, family-owned business since 1923 located in Miami. Under the direction of Dr. Blanco, more than 700 volunteers went door-to-door handing out the kits, and were involved in landscaping, restoration, painting murals and greening of the Town Park Village property.
Dr. Blanco's VH Pharmacy has been an integral part of the South Florida community, and has been in business for almost 90 years. The pharmacy conducts numerous community outreach events such as free Glucose and Cholesterol screenings and bi-Monthly Health Screenings to help educate the community about the importance of preventative care, lifestyle changes and routine checkups.Dr. Eddy Blanco also has an active roll in training Pharmacy Technician students, the new generation of pharmaceutical practitioners, allowing him to pass on his knowledge and love of his field. Dr. Blanco is very proud to be co-owner of VH Pharmacy.
The pharmacy's roots date back to 1923, when his great grandfather and family patriarch, Roberto Hernández started "La Farmacia Roberto" in Havana, Cuba. In 1963, the family and the pharmacy moved to Miami growing the VH Pharmacy to seven locations throughout Miami, resulting in the first Hispanic-owned pharmacy chain in South Florida. For more information about VH Pharmacy, please call at (305) 324-8777 or log onto www.vhpharmacyRx.com.
Dr. Michelle M. Carter, Captain, USAF, BSC, Chief, Pharmacy Services
Joseph T. Guastella, Jr., Colonel, USAF
Commander, 20th Fighter Wing and
Dr. Michelle M. Carter, Captain, USAF, BSC,
Chief, Pharmacy Services, 20th Fighter Wing.
Captain Carter commissioned in the Air Force in 2007 as the Chief of Pharmacy Services with the 20th Medical Group at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina. She assumed this command as her first and only duty assignment to date, immediately after earning her Doctor of Pharmacy degree at Nova Southeastern University. She is licensed in both Florida and South Carolina.
Captain Carter immersed into her profession with a demanding charge. In less than two short years of her initial assignment, she has excelled in the management and leadership of a team of pharmacists, technicians, and volunteers who, under her administration, directed over 200K prescriptions filled to 30K Shaw beneficiaries at 2 sites. As Chief of the Pharmacy, she managed a $7.6M budget; maximized the High Dollar Drug Program/National Contracts/Basic Core Formulary usage and returned $1.1M for redistribution. She also executed a $198K pharmacy renovation within her first year which relocated the entire operation twice in one day; this led to an increase in efficiency and cut patient wait times by 30%.
Also within her first year, Captain Carter implemented the medication refill clinic which was a crucial relief during nursing/provider shortage and saved the Base's Family Practice Clinic staff 80 hours per month. She also established the Force Health Protection Prescription Program for the Base which increased critical information by 70% and saved providers 50+ walk-ins quarterly.
Not only is Captain Carter a great leader but she is also an outstanding Base and community activist. Captain Carter is currently the 20 Fighter Wing American Red Cross blood drive coordinator organizing drives on a quarterly basis averaging a collection of 50 units per drive. She is also an active AADD volunteer and is credited with 54 saves this year alone. Impacting and saving lives, Captain Carter has participated in the American Heart Association Sumter Heart Walk and the American Cancer Society Relay for Life and has helped fund raise over $165K. It is no surprise that Captain Michelle Carter has been awarded the highest honors bestowed upon a pharmacist in the military:
- Air Combat Command Company Grade Pharmacist of the Year - 2008
- 20th Medical Group Company Grade Officer of the Year - 2008
- 20th Fighter Wing & Team Shaw Company Grade Officer of the Quarter (July -September, 2008)
On behalf of Nova Southeastern University College of Pharmacy - and especially the West Palm Beach site - Congratulations Captain Carter - we are very proud of you!
Richard Ashworth, Pharm.D.
NSU College of Pharmacy alumnus Richard Ashworth, Pharm.D., (c/o 1999) has been named president of retail and pharmacy operations for Walgreens Co. as part of a revised operational structure. He will assume the new post on Sept. 1 and will oversee the field organization to implement a single customer plan as well as oversee the delivery of customer care across Walgreens’ community locations.