Hampton native receives national honors for work with ETSU’s College of Pharmacy

Published 9:25 am Monday, March 7, 2016

Dr. Larry Calhoun

Dr. Larry Calhoun

Dr. Larry Calhoun, founding dean of the Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy at East Tennessee State University, is the recipient of a prestigious national honor from the American Pharmacists Association (APhA).
Calhoun has received the 2016 APhA Academy of Student Pharmacists Outstanding Dean Award, which was established in 2004 by the APhA to recognize a school or college of pharmacy dean who has made significant contributions to the APhA-ASP chapter and promoted the welfare of student pharmacists through various activities.
Calhoun, a former Hampton resident, is a graduate of Hampton High School.
Loren Kirk, a fourth-year pharmacy student at ETSU and 2014-15 Speaker of the House for the APhA-ASP, nominated Calhoun for the honor, citing in his nomination letter Calhoun’s dedication to “creating a unique culture marked by student-centeredness and a family-like environment among students, faculty, staff, alumni and donors” at the pharmacy school.
Fifteen others wrote letters of support, including Gatton alumni, students, faculty and donors as well as deans of other pharmacy schools and United States Congressman Dr. Phil Roe.
“Dean Calhoun and his students have tailored their efforts to the real problems facing their local community in Northeast Tennessee, such as prescription drug abuse…,” Roe wrote in his letter.
Dr. Roger Davis, dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at Lipscomb University, wrote about Calhoun’s development of the college around the central ideas of student leadership and success, noting his “direct, daily involvement” with students.
Dr. Bateena Black, executive director emeritus of the Tennessee Pharmacists Association, called Calhoun a “role model for students on what it means to be a pharmacist who cares about their profession, their community and their patients,” adding that “he is respected and admired by his colleagues and peers in Tennessee and throughout the nation.”
Dr. Jessica Freshour, Gatton alumnus and current assistant professor of Pharmacy Practice at the college, credited Calhoun with building “a foundation of trust and common purpose that allows success to multiply,” noting that the culture Calhoun has created “will sustain he college long after he is gone.”
Calhoun recently announced he would be stepping down from the dean position at the end of this academic year. As the founding dean, Calhoun has been at the helm of the Gatton College of Pharmacy since it opened in 2005. Leading up to being hired as the founding dean, Calhoun worked closely with leaders to establish the pharmacy school at ETSU.
“This award is an incredible honor, particularly because of its focus on involvement with students. Throughout my time as the dean of the Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy, I have always made it my mission to ensure our students are receiving the best possible training and education as they relate to pharmacy, but also want to make sure they are growing as human beings,” Calhoun said. “To know that so many individuals have voiced recognition of these efforts in their letters of support is truly an unbelievable and indescribable feeling. I am touched beyond words.”
In February, the Tennessee state legislature passed a resolution that also recognized Calhoun for his “remarkable career” and “significant contributions” to the university community, to the people of the region and to the pharmacy profession.

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