Alumni Potpourri September - December 2013

Three smiling menKert Shuster (PharmD 1997) in November shared his experiences as a successful pharmacy owner in Hawaii with students, faculty and staff as part of the R. Ken Coit Seminar series, and then stayed on to participate in the Homecoming festivities at the college and on campus.

Several graduates have recently passed the Board Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist exam. Congratulations to Carol Vollmer Johnson (PharmD 1991), Sheena Jolson Oakes (PharmD 2010), Barbara Colondres Davee (PharmD 2011), Christina DiGiacomo (PharmD 2011), Scott Hall (PharmD 2011), Lee Stringer (PharmD 2011), Christine Aguilar (PharmD 2012) and Randi Douglas Bird (PharmD 2012). Alumnus Bill Jones found this information on Facebook and shared it with us.

Several COP graduates have stayed in Tucson as PGYI residents at University of Arizona Medical Center-University Campus. Completing residencies this year are Kristin Ellis, Michaela Johnson-Clague and Erin McCusker. Also at UAMC are Mary Babico, Connie Chau and Ashlee Gerfen (all PharmD 2012). Gerfen is currently participating in a PGY2 specialized residency in critical care, Babico in pediatrics, and Chan is a PGY2 resident in internal medicine.

In addition to their many responsibilities as residents this fall, the following residents worked hard on continuing education presentations delivered to UAMC pharmacists and COP faculty:

  • “High-dose Steroid Therapy in Critically Ill Patients,” Ashlee Gerfen (PharmD 2012) Oct. 23.
  • “Acute Ischemic Stroke-Recent Updates That Will Keep Your Brain Juices Flowing,” Connie Chau (PharmD 2012) Nov. 20.
  • “Sleep Difficulties in Children: Identifying Contributing Factors and Management,” Mary Babico (PharmD 2012) Nov. 25.

four smiling womenYvonne Windham (BS Pharmacy 1952) shared with the college alumni staff that she is still enjoying good health, doing volunteer work with an Alzheimer’s project and traveling. She has been enjoying visits to Reno, Jackson Hole and Maui, where she was with family to celebrate her middle daughter’s fiftieth birthday. “Makes one realize how fast time flies," she says.

Windham also attended Homecoming this year with friend and classmate Frances McKinney. Windham, McKinney and Danny Jacob are three members of the Class of 1952 still going strong. 

Tom Brady (PharmD 1980) writes that he is currently a staff pharmacist at Rose Medical Center in Denver, as well as a per diem pharmacist at Kaiser Permanente infusion centers in the Denver area. He spent 13 years working at the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (1990-2003).

 smiling womanAfter many years with Endo Pharmaceuticals, alumna Nancy Alvarez (PharmD 1992) has started a new career path. Alvarez left the east coast for the west coast to become assistant dean, experiential education and continuing professional development and clinical assistant professor at Chapman University in Irvine, Calif. Her COP friends hope the career change and warmer winter will bring Alvarez much happiness. Her APhA Board of Trustees responsibilities kept her away from Homecoming this year, but Alvarez let us know she was “here in spirit.” 

Keith Boesen (PharmD 2002), director of the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center, gave the commencement speech at the graduation of the Pima Medical Institute on Nov. 8 at the Tucson Convention Center. For more than a year, Boesen has been speaking to classes at PMI about the role of the poison center in Arizona. His commencement speech centered on his four recommendations to be successful in the workplace, which are:

  •       Listen to your patient
  •       Show up for work, and work hard while you’re there
  •       Get involved with local, state and national organizations
  •       Find a job you enjoy

Alumni faculty members have been elected as College of Pharmacy delegates to the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) this year. Janet Cooley (PharmD 2006), director of experiential education, was elected as faculty delegate, and Lisa Whittington Goldstone (PharmD 2007), assistant professor, was elected alternate faculty delegate. They will represent our college for the 2013-2014 academic year and at the AACP Annual Meeting in July 2014. Goldstone will be the faculty delegate for the 2014-2015 academic year.

smiling manBrian Erstad (PharmD 1994), head of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science, has been selected as a Master of Critical Care Medicine by the Council of the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM). Erstad was chosen based on the criteria of personal character, leadership, eminence in clinical practice, outstanding contributions to research and education in critical care, and exemplary contributions to SCCM and the field of critical care. Erstad is one of two pharmacists who will receive the award in January; they are the only two pharmacists ever to receive the award.

Erstad was also a guest speaker at the Developing, Expanding and Improving Residency Training Programs in Arizona Symposium and Workshop presented by Arizona Pharmacy Association.

smiling womanRenee Tyree (PharmD 1993) participated in a discussion in commemoration of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities hosted by the State Department on Google+ Hangout in December. Tyree was a member of a panel of Paralympians who shared their experiences about the obstacles they faced in "going for the gold" overseas. Tyree is one of the only women in history to win Paralympic gold, silver, and bronze medals in wheelchair basketball.

Originally posted: July 1, 2014
Last updated: July 1, 2014
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