The Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy is delighted to announce our 2023 Alumni Awards recipients!
From pharmacy owners to CEOs, our recipients are recognized for various achievements in their commitment to serving our forward-thinking community and pushing the boundaries of pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences.
2023 ALUMNI AWARDs RECIPIENTS
LESLIE DAN FACULTY OF PHARMACY INDIVIDUAL AWARD CATEGORIES
Andrew Schonbe BScPhm 1T0
Pharmacist, Found/Owner, The PrEP Clinic (Ontario Prevention Clinic +pharmacy)
Andrew’s continued work and leadership in pharmacy practice has made an tremendous impact in the industry and community. In 2019 he launched the country’s first-ever online PrEP service, breaking down barriers to accessing HIV prevention. Since then, he has established a collaborative team of 40 health professionals including pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, and social workers to deliver needed care. He has also established full-service, one-stop in-person clinics in Toronto, Brampton, and Ottawa. He is a recognized advocate with ongoing community engagement, outreach and collaboration with a focus on made-marginalized groups.
Words from Andrew:
"This award is a testament to the phenomenal education and experiences I received at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. We were taught anything was possible and encouraged pharmacists to think outside the box and push boundaries. It means so much to be recognized for my work in the sexual health space expanding access to marginalized communities, while fighting stigma. Growing up I never thought I would be able to be both true to myself publicly and thrive professionally. So it fills me with immense pride to be embraced by my peers and faculty. I share this award with our dedicated pharmacy and clinic team who have worked tirelessly for our patients and make my dream a reality every day."
Molly Yang PharmD 2T0
Director, Pharmacy, Innovation & Professional Affairs, Wholehealth Pharmacy Partners
An emerging leader in pharmacy practice, Molly has quickly risen to a leadership position at a national pharmacy banner as Director of Pharmacy Innovation & Professional Affairs at Wholehealth Pharmacy Partners, supporting over 200 independent pharmacies across Canada. She has leveraged her platform to focus on developing resources and campaigns that support public health, excellence in pharmacy practice, representation, and pharmacy advocacy.
Words from Molly:
"I am incredibly honoured to receive this year’s Emerging Leader in Pharmacy Practice Award. My time at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy was invaluable, providing me with opportunities, skills, and experiences to pursue roles at the forefront of pharmacy practice, supporting clinical excellence and enhancing representation and cultural safety. I am inspired daily by our profession, from our dedication and immense impact on patient care to all the groundbreaking work and research led by pharmacists. I am grateful to the Faculty and my mentors (throughout my degree and at Wholehealth) for empowering me to realize my full potential. Being recognized for this award reinforces my endeavour to continue contributing to and inspiring the future of pharmacy."
Patrick Ronaldson HBSc 0T0, PhD 0T7
Professor of Pharmacology, University of Arizona College of Medicine
Chair, Graduate Interdisciplinary Program in Neuroscience, University of Arizona
Dr. Patrick Ronaldson is currently a Professor of Pharmacology at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. Since joining the faculty in 2011, he has demonstrated sustained, high-level excellence in research, teaching, and service. His research demonstrated for the first time that blood-brain barrier (BBB) transporters are required for neuroprotective drugs to be effective in the treatment of ischemic stroke. This major finding underscores the importance of considering drug delivery for translation of preclinical stroke research. Dr. Ronaldson is also dedicated to outstanding education and mentorship of undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral scholars. In this capacity, he continuously inspires these trainees to pursue goals that will facilitate their development into independent scientists that can make their own unique contributions to blood-brain barrier (BBB) biology, molecular pharmacology, and drug discovery.
Words from Patrick:
"My journey as an academic pharmaceutical scientist began at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy in 2001. Upon completion of my doctoral degree in 2007, I had developed a strong passion for biomedical research. This was a direct result of working in the stimulating intellectual environment in the department of pharmaceutical sciences, which fostered scientific inquisitiveness and the drive to push boundaries beyond what was perceived to be possible in the research laboratory. I used these experiences to continue my career at the University of Arizona, first as a postdoctoral fellow, then junior faculty member, and now as a tenured full professor. I routinely use the many lessons in leadership and mentorship that I obtained at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. These experiences have been invaluable as I help my own students/trainees pursue their individual career goals. Receipt of this award is an honour that I greatly cherish. I truly appreciate recognition from my alma mater that my contributions to scholarship and education in the pharmaceutical sciences are both meaningful and impactful."
Mohammad Ali Amini PhD 1T9
CEO, QurCan Therapeutics Inc.
Since graduating from the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, Mohammad has gone on to do incredible work with his startup, QurCan Therapeutics. Formerly known as Nanology, the company came together from research he conducted as a pharmaceutical sciences PhD student. QurCan is now an award winning biotech company focused on developing next-generation RNA and chemotherapeutics enabled by its proprietary nanoparticle drug delivery system. He is an exemplary role model for students looking to explore entrepreneurship as their career path in pharmaceutical sciences.
Words from Mohammad:
"I would like to share my heartfelt appreciation and excitement for being chosen as the recipient of the "Emerging Leader in Pharmaceutical Science Award" by the esteemed faculty of pharmacy at the University of Toronto. Receiving this award from the faculty where I pursued my PhD degree in pharmaceutical sciences is an honor that fills me with both humility and pride. It symbolizes the culmination of years of dedication, perseverance, and a deep passion for advancing pharmaceutical sciences. As I reflect on my journey from a PhD student to co-founding QurCan Therapeutics, a UofT Biotech spin-out, and leading it as the CEO, this award encapsulates the growth, challenges, and achievements that have marked my path.
The award is more than a testament to my personal accomplishments; it acknowledges the shared efforts of mentors, collaborators, and colleagues who have supported me along the way.
Being the recipient of this award serves as a reminder of the responsibility I carry to continue contributing meaningfully to the field. It motivates me to remain committed to exploring new frontiers, pushing the boundaries of knowledge, and developing solutions that impact patient care and well-being.
I am excited to carry this accolade forward as a reminder of the potential and responsibility we hold in shaping the future of science in drug design and development."
David Windross BScPhm 7T5
Vice President (retired), External Affairs, Teva Canada Ltd.
For decades, David’s been a proud alum and ambassador of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, always raising our faculty’s profile throughout his dynamic career. He continues to share his passion for pharmacy by delivering frequent presentations and seminars to aid the learning and education of students not only at U of T but across many institutions across Canada. David’s many accomplishments will inspire future generations to consider pursuing their pharmacy education at our Faculty, enabling us to continue training the leaders of tomorrow.
Words from David:
"I am honoured to be awarded the 2023 Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy Hall of Distinction Award. This award is particularly special to me since it comes from my alma mater in recognition of my lifelong accomplishments to the profession of pharmacy and, as described in the award description, that my pharmacy career “stands as an example and inspires future generations of Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy students.
Little did I know that when I started as a student at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Pharmacy in September 1971 I would 52 years later receive such a prestigious award! This is an award I will truly cherish."
Christine Truong BScPhm 1T0, MHM(c) 2024
Director, Pharmacy Services, Mohawk Medbury Corporation
Program Development Specialist, Discovery Pharmacy, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy
Since graduating in 2010, Christine has continued to give back to her alma mater and has been involved in many different ways at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. From giving presentations to the student body, being a preceptor for APPE and EPE students, a pharmacy mentor, and even more recently working at the Discovery Pharmacy helping implement clinical programs, improving student experiential involvement and providing community pharmacy services.
Words from Christine:
"It is an honour to receive this award. I have been fortunate to experience many different avenues of pharmacy practice since graduating. My passion is to explore, challenge, and elevate pharmacy practice. Throughout my career, the one consistency has always been the connection back to the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. I am grateful to have the opportunity to enrich the lives of, give back to, and be a part of a wonderful community of students, staff and faculty. I’d like to thank my family, friends, colleagues and many others that have supported me in my career journey thus far."
LESLIE DAN FACULTY OF PHARMACY CORPORATE AWARDS CATEGORIES
Shoppers Drug Mart
Shoppers Drug Mart continues to be one of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy’s longest and strongest partners with a commitment to student preparation and the education of future professionals. A long-time supporter of the faculty and its students, they have committed to various student awards and programs, experiential placements, and more recently supported the faculty’s pharmacy practice research. They continue to be a leader in the industry and we are proud to have them as leading corporate partner.
Wholehealth Pharmacy Partners
Wholehealth has partnered with the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy in several pharmacy practice-based research projects, has provided annual guest lectures for a number of programs, and has been an active APPE placement site precepting over 45 students over the last number of years. They continue to look at ways to be involved in the faculty and provide opportunities to our student body.
Words from Dean Miller, President and CEO:
"It is with great delight that Wholehealth Pharmacy Partners (Wholehealth) was awarded the Corporate Partnership Service Award for 2023. Since the day we opened our doors to independent pharmacists in 2016, involvement in innovative programs, student initiatives and being supportive of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy in general, our connections to faculties of pharmacies across Canada has been a core value of Wholehealth. Many of our Wholehealth professional programs are deeply rooted in the contribution our students make to their development and of course many of those students come from our good friends at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. The relationship is something we are extremely proud of and the relationship makes us smile!"
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