As I reflect back on the past year, I find myself thinking about my career in pharmacy and the people who played big roles in helping me get to where I am. These people gave me opportunities that brought me to where I am today. I decided to use this venue to say thank you to some of them. My path was not a traditional path. I took years off to raise my kids and when I did return, many of those years involved working part time. I have never regretted my choice of pharmacy as a career and have had the pleasure of working with some fantastic people.
Leslie Krenk hired me into my first job as a pharmacist. Fresh out of school with no pharmacy experience to speak of. Thank you Les. Bernard Mehl hired me into my first job as a hospital pharmacist at Mount Sinai Hospital. I was actually hired to work in the discharge pharmacy and after 6 months he gave me the opportunity to transition into the inpatient side, which is where my love of hospital pharmacy began. Thank you Bernie, not only for that opportunity, but for making a call to a fellow Director of Pharmacy in San Diego who then granted me an interview and ultimately a position at the University of California San Diego. Thank you Dr. Victoria Serrano Adams for working with me when I needed a schedule change. I didn’t realize it at the time, but the new responsibility of controlled substance oversight not only afforded me the schedule I needed, but also launched me into an area of pharmacy I grew to love (drug diversion). I was pretty convinced I would hate it by the way. My next thank you goes to Dr. Tori Hong. She placed me into management and mentored me along the way. Another mentor to me was Dr. Dan Ross. He not only served as an advisor when it came to launching my own consulting, but he also provided me with some opportunities and mentorship to get me started on the journey. Two people who gave me an opportunity and mentorship in my first Director of Pharmacy position were Dr. Candace Fong and Anita Kennedy. Candace, thank you for believing in me and giving me the opportunity as a DOP with no past experience. Anita, thank you for taking the chance, for your patience, and for mentorship in the ways of hospital administration, budgets and human resources. The final thank you goes to my husband Gil. Without his encouragement and his business/entrepreneurial expertise I would never have taken on the challenge to go from a “pharmacist” to “business woman pharmacist” (which is still a work in progress by the way).
All of these people saw something in me and gave me an opportunity to excel in an area I had no experience in. Many of these people went on to mentor me which allowed me a chance to grow and be successful in the position. Thank you very much.
Every beginner possesses a great potential to be an expert in his or her chosen field. –Lailah Gifty Akita