SPA Newsletter: 2016 Wrap-Up

We ended our year with a later-than-usual, but better-than-ever Annual Awards Meeting. We had great vendors representing many different companies and organizations, a WSU student poster, and fun raffles! We had some truly deserving people recognized for the work they are doing in the world of pharmacy, and of course, we had an exceptional group of people gathered to celebrate SPA.

The highlight of the evening was an engaging and energizing presentation by Dr. Tomkowiak, dean of the WSU Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine, who encouraged all people in the pharmacy world to use innovation, imagination, and futuristic thinking to move OUR profession into a new era. Some of the current changes would have been unthinkable a few years ago, and his recommendation is to push past today’s limits and reach out to create new and different applications of pharmaceutical medicine that are “bold and audacious!”

A HUGE thank you to Heather Homchick and Anna Mucker, co-chairs of the 2016 Annual Meeting, and to Sue Kellogg, SPA’s Executive V.P. and ever-helpful organizer of details.

A big part of the Annual Meeting was to give thanks to as many members as possible who shared their expertise during the year, because it is the contributions, large or small, that make any organization an interesting, dynamic community. Even being present at CE and networking events is participating, as is following Facebook and posting our faxes about activities at work for all to see. Especially important to building our professional connections is volunteering to help with SPA activities, whether in the background or up front, whether one hour or four – everyone’s participation is a gift to our organization and our profession. So a special thank you to each of you who makes SPA a vibrant professional pharmacy organization!

Changes on the SPA Board of Directors
Outgoing board members are:

  • Brett Haney – who has done an awesome job with CE organization in the last two years and infused great energy into SPA.
  • Chris Greer – has been our president and past president, and provided SPA with superb leadership in several key directions.

It has been a pleasure to work with both of these outstanding people and we hope they continue to be a presence in SPA.

Kendra (Demaris) Hall will become your new SPA president, and I will become the past-president. It has been my honor and my true pleasure to work with the amazingly talented and dedicated people that are your SPA Board of Directors.

To all the members and volunteers: please know that you are the “Red Bull” for the SPA association – you energize us and help us be an innovative professional association for our members! Connecting with patients and pharmacy colleagues, and sharing ideas and information by personal interaction is a key aspect of professional satisfaction.

Incoming: your new board members are

  • Jennifer Czapinski – your new president-elect
  • Shurrie Morris – your new CE chair-elect

The SPA website at has a list of the many and varied CE and networking events held during 2016 for our members. Be sure to check the SPA website and Facebook for AAM photos – coming soon!

Donations from SPA to the WSU student groups included: the annual donation to the SPA-Marguerite Villars scholarship, and donations to: the NAPLEX lunch, Legislative Day, Resume “speed date” event, WSU Career Fair, NCPA dinner, student-pharmacist networking events.

Recipient of the SPA-Marguerite Villars Scholarship at WSU for this year is
Mira Kim, who happens to be the PY-3 SPA student representative.

2016 Annual Awards Recipients

  • Student of the Year: Miguel Toscano, PY-3 at WSU and Shopko intern

    Key comment: “He asks many questions to improve his knowledge and performance as an intern pharmacist. He is innovative, has made suggestions and is an asset to our team.”

  • Technician of the Year: Briget Thompson, CPhT at Tick Klock Drug, Colfax, Wash.

    Key Comment: I could not ask for a more competent, caring and hard-working pharmacy technician who goes above and beyond every day.”

  • Community Pharmacist of the Year: Lee Funkhouser, R.Ph at Rite-Aid; has served the Spokane pharmacy area at several local community pharmacies over the years.

    Key comment: “providing for the individual needs of each patient and molding the minds & habits of future pharmacists year after year make Lee an excellent candidate of the year.”

  • Pharmacy of the Year: Valley Mission Home Care Pharmacy, David and Karen Redmond; John and Mary Lou Redmond

    Key comment: “VMHC Pharmacy completely embodies the idea of an ideal pharmacy. The staff provides outstanding patient care on a daily basis at the highest level.”

  • Health Systems Pharmacist of the Year: Steve Goodner, R.Ph at St Lukes Pharmacy & Valley Hospital Pharmacy

    Key Comment: “Steve is a true definition of a lifelong mentor, and has my recommendation for pharmacist of the year because of his earnest concern for the sell-being of the patients and also the students under his care.”

  • CE Speaker of the Year: Casey Claypool, O.D., specialist in dry eye disease, glaucoma, corneal refractive surgery, and optimizing integrated ophthalmic care at Empire Eye Physicians.

    Key Comment: “Dr. Claypool provided two presentations this year which were very well received and we appreciate him sharing his expertise with us.”

Thank you to those members who honored fellow co-workers and employees by nominating them for a SPA Award. Remember to also check the SPA website from time to time during the year for our “Pharmacy Focus” for an in-depth spotlight about one of our local pharmacy colleagues.

Wishing each of you a “bold and audacious” New Year!
Landa Vierra
2017 SPA past-president

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