Directly Speaking - The Movers and the Shakers

by Scott A. Meyers, Executive Vice President
October 1, 2013

On Friday evening, September 20th, I had the privilege and pleasure to stand before nearly 250 pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, pharmacy students, ICHP staff, their spouses and guests and speak about ICHP Leaders. Many of those leaders were sitting right there in that beautiful ballroom! Most all of them are my good friends and those that aren’t will hopefully become ones soon!

I began with this quote from Benjamin Franklin – “All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immoveable, those that are moveable and those that move.”

I couldn’t agree more! For 50 years, the Illinois Council of Health-System Pharmacists has been an organization of movers and shakers! There can be no argument with that. The leaders of ICHP have made the profession move forward pulling, pushing and prodding those who would move and leaving behind those who would not. From the early 1940s when hospital pharmacy was just beginning to establish itself as a career path for pharmacists, those early leaders began laying a strong foundation for ICHP.

While I wasn’t around in the early days of the Council, then the Illinois Council of Hospital Pharmacists, I have had the pleasure of meeting, working with and truly getting to know many of those early ICHP pioneers. Over the past 36 years, I’ve spent many long conversations with Herb Carlin, ICHP’s 2nd Chairman; Sister Mary Louise Degenhart, ICHP’s 3rd Chairman; ICHP’s 7th President Weldon Johnson; and its 12th President, Harland Lee. As a matter of fact, I’ve met and gotten to know all but 6 of ICHP’s Past Presidents or Chairmen and worked with 37 of the 50 ICHP Presidents during my career as a volunteer and now as staff member of the Council. I’ve learned a lot from these incredible leaders! In addition to the Presidents I’ve already mentioned, I’ve had the pleasure of working with early leaders like David Vogel, lost way before his time, Lee Simon, Marcia Palmer, Dennis Tribble and Bill Wuller. I enjoyed working with presidents who were more my contemporaries like Caryn Bing, Mary Moody, Steve Marx, Bruce Dickerhofe, Andy and Ed Donnelly, Kevin Colgan, Trish Wegner, Tom Westerkamp, and don’t forget the Mikes - Mike Novario, Mike Rajski, Mike McEvoy, Mike Weaver, Mike Short, and now Mike Fotis. And more recently I’ve had the pleasure of working with younger leaders like Ann Jankiewicz, Carrie Sincak and Chris Rivers. The presidential line at ICHP is full of movers.

But ICHP has benefited from the efforts of more leaders who never became or have yet to become its President. The Council’s success has also relied upon the commitment to its activities and objectives by its past and current Board Members and its legions of volunteers. Without the individuals who did the heavy lifting whenever asked, ICHP would not have accomplished all that it has. People like Regis Kenna, Charlie Lev, Louie Gdalman, Roger Klotz, Sister Margaret Wright, Ernie Steinbaugh, Mary Maranti, Ron Betz, Karen Nordstrom, Jim O’Donnell, Kathy Chase, Kathy Benderev, Edna Dooley, Ken Witte, LeRoy Hayes, Helen Calmes, Nan Lundquist, Alan Weinstein, Jackie Kessler, Miriam Mobley-Smith, Mary Ann Kliethermes, Linda Fred, Mary Lee, Jan Keresztes, Holly McMaster, John McBride, Brian Kawahara, Jacob Gettig, Jennifer Phillips, Stan Kent, Kathy Komperda, and many, many more through their many years of dedication, have made and will make ICHP and Pharmacy stronger. And the best news for ICHP is that the pipeline continues to feed us more volunteer rising star leaders like Desi Kotis, Kathryn Schultz, Jennifer Ellison, Jennifer Arnoldi, Scott Bergman, Ginger Ertel, Mark Luer, Liz Engebretson, Diana Isaacs, Sheila Allen, Antoine Jenkins, Fatima Ali, Lisa Lubsch, Pete Antonopoulos and many more to come! I see a long line of Presidential candidates in this pipeline! I apologize if I’ve missed anyone, but being involved as a volunteer and staff member of ICHP for 29 years and a member for 37 means I’ve met quite a few outstanding pharmacists, technicians and students!

But ICHP’s leaders’ legacy goes much further! The Council has been fortunate to have been a training ground for four ASHP Presidents, Herb Carlin, Mick Hunt, Kevin Colgan and Stan Kent, and a fifth if you count Paul Abramowitz, ASHP’s current Executive Vice President and CEO, having been elected President of ICHP only to leave for Minnesota just prior to the beginning of his term of office. And let us not forget the role Henri Manasse played while at the University of Illinois as its Dean, working with the Council and seeking ICHP’s input and support on many efforts, not the least of these being the movement to the Pharm.D. degree. And yes, youngsters, that was a controversial issue at one time not so long ago! Who knew that years later, ICHP would work with Henri again, in a completely different capacity as he led ASHP from 1997 through 2011 as its Executive Vice President and CEO!

ICHP members have also ventured forth and served in leadership roles in other organizations. Herb Carlin served as not only an ICHP and ASHP President but also as an APhA President. Jan Engle, an ICHP member for many years, served not that long ago as another APhA President from Illinois. Two Illinois Deans have served as the President of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, Henri Manasse and Jerry Bauman, and Jerry also served as the President of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy.

As you can see, ICHP has been blessed with great leaders! And in turn, ICHP has shared these leaders to bless all of Pharmacy! It’s not hard to see why ICHP has been so successful, you just need to look around and see all of its leaders! All of its movers and shakers!

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