College of Pharmacy mourns loss of longtime employee

A message to College of Pharmacy employees, students, alumni and friends from Dean J. Lyle Bootman

You may have heard the sad news that Sandy Rogers, longtime employee of the College of Pharmacy, died in Tucson on Wednesday, June 10, 2015. I wanted to share some history and memories with you so that Sandy can be remembered for the significant individual she was in the life of the college.

Sandra K. Rogers began her long association with the UA College of Pharmacy in 1972. Her first job was as an assistant to Dean Willis Brewer.

Through the years, as the college grew, so did Sandy’s responsibilities. She became administrative associate to the dean, assisting Dean Jack Cole for many years, and then, in 1991, was named coordinator of student services for approximately 220 pharmacy students. By the time she retired from the college in 2009, the number of students she was assisting each year had increased to nearly 400. Upon her retirement from the College of Pharmacy, in honor of her decades of service, pharmacy students initiated the Sandra K. Rogers Scholarship. Funds generated by the scholarship are used to support pharmacy students.

Throughout her years as student services coordinator, Sandy had responsibilities that changed as the college did. Among her many duties were student advising, maintaining student records, overseeing the selection and notification of student scholarships, and planning and carrying out the White Coat and Convocation events. Even after her official retirement, Sandy continued to work part-time on these tasks. Only because of health problems did she finally terminate her employment with UA on Feb. 6, 2015.

I knew Sandy when I was a student here, and then as faculty member. When I became dean, I saw her love for the students and selected her to be coordinator of student services, working with the student services dean, Dr. Lincoln Chin. As Professor Michael Mayersohn said yesterday, “Sandy … will be remembered by generations of students whose lives she touched, as well as by faculty and staff.”

Sandy’s reach extended well beyond the college. In 1998, she was selected to receive the Georgia Reynolds Dedicated Service Award from the Arizona Health Sciences Center in honor of her long-term, outstanding commitment to the university. She was a long-time member of the Tucson Business and Professional Women’s Club, of which she was president from 1981 to 1983 and which honored her as Woman of the Year in 1983. She was also a member of the United Ostomy Association and was active in the local support group of that organization.

Our lives are less rich with Sandy's passing. "Sandy was an exceptional person in every way," Dr. Cole says. "She and I worked closely together during my 10 years as dean and remained friends and colleagues ever since. She had a special relationship with students and they all loved her. My wife, Joan, and I will miss her."

I agree. Sandy Rogers helped shape the College of Pharmacy into the first-class, student-oriented school it is today. We will remember her as one of the most loyal and dedicated employees the University of Arizona or College of Pharmacy ever had. It is with heavy hearts that we say good-bye to a staunch supporter and loyal friend.

- J. Lyle Bootman

Services for Sandy will be held in Tucson on Tuesday, June 23. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. at Funeraria del Angel, 7 E. University Blvd. (University and Stone). A funeral service will follow at 11 a.m. A graveside service will be held at South Lawn Cemetery, 5401 S. Park Ave., at 12:30 p.m.

Friends may view Sandy’s obituary and leave tribute and condolence messages at the Funeraria del Angel website.

To contribute to the Sandra K. Rogers Scholarship fund, visit the UA Foundation’s Sandy Rogers Endowment page or contact Shannon LeJeune.

Originally posted: June 11, 2015
Last updated: June 17, 2015
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