The University of Georgia College of Pharmacy bi-monthly newsletter serving faculty, staff, students and friends.
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Dean's Office Welcomes New Staff Member

Rocky is welcomed to the College of Pharmacy by George Francisco, Mike Fulford, Gloria Strait, Renee Dobbs, Ashley Townsend, Brad Brown and Ken Schroder.

The College of Pharmacy welcomes Rocky Raffle to the PharmDawg family! As a member of the Dean's Office staff, Rocky is an Administrative Associate I, serving in the role formerly held by Cicely Hemphill. Rocky is responsible for p-card purchases, assisting with room scheduling, and providing administrative services for Mike Fulford and George Francisco. Born and raised in Seattle, WA, Rocky worked at Virginia Mason Medical Center in the same city before joining the college. He and his wife, Dr. Alison (Alie) Farley Raffle, who is an assistant professor of Music Education in the UGA Hugh Hodson School of Music, live in Athens-Clarke County with their dog, Aiko. Rocky and Alie enjoy all that Athens has to offer—including restaurants, and discovering the creative and unique culture of the Classic City. Drop by Rocky's office, Room 101B and offer a big PharmDawg welcome! 

Albany Flaggstone Complex Opens

A little rain didn't dampen spirits at the ribbon cutting and open house for Flaggstone in Albany in late May. Flaggstone is a complex of studio, one, two and three bedroom suites, study areas and gathering spaces for students and residents completing their pharmacy and medical rotations at healthcare facilities in Southwest Georgia. Our College of Pharmacy students will greatly benefit from this beautiful facility. Hats off to the faculty and staff at our distant campus in Albany—and to Phoebe Putney Health Systems and the Medical College of Georgia for a job well done.

Congratulations Augusta PhD Graduates

Back row: Drs. Susan Fagan, Somanath Shenoy, and Lakshman Segar. Front row, 2017 Graduates: Drs. Heba Ahmed, Harika Sabbineni and Arwa Fairaq. 

Recently, CoP's distant campus in Augusta held a celebration to congratulate their recent Ph.D. graduates: Arwa Fairaq, Harika Sabbineni and Heba Ahmed. Who knew CoP had vocal talent? Heba Ahmed, CET graduate assistant at our Augusta campus, performed an original song at the graduation party. Click here to listen.

Comprehensive Campaign Board Meets 

The College of Pharmacy's Comprehensive Campaign Board met in Charleston, South Carolina May 18-19 to discuss the state of the College, alumni affairs and development efforts, including endowments and need-based scholarships. Many thanks to this hard working group of volunteers who make a difference in the life of our College—most especially, for our students!

Faculty Accolades & Honors


Dr. Daniel Chastain, a CoP clinical assistant professor at our distant campus in Albany, served as the lead author in a recent article in collaboration with Anthony Hawkins, Chris Bland and Ijang Ngando (a former Phoebe PGY-1 resident). The publication titled "Effect of the 2014 Clinical and Laboratory Sta-
ndards Institute urine-specific breakpoints on cefazolin susceptibility rates at a community teaching hospital," can be read here.
Dr. Anthony Hawkins, clinical assistant professor at our distant campus in Albany, recently delivered three hours of continuing nursing education on hemodynamics and vasoactives and one hour of continuing pharmacy education for a regional GSHP meeting titled “Ins and Outs of Fluids during Critical Illness.”
Dr. J. Russell May, clinical professor, and Dr. Dianne May, clinical professor, both from our distant campus in Augusta, co-authored "Assessment of current practices for developing preceptors in training.” The full article can be found here.
Dr. Mingming Gao, assistant research scientist,  received a Meritorious Abstract Travel Award at the 20th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy in Washington, D.C., May 10-13. These awards are offered to postdoctoral fellows and students who are associate members of ASGCT and receive an average abstract review score of between 1 and 3.5.
Dr. Dexi Liu, Panoz professor, has been busy these past few months. In April, he gave a presentation on "Hydrodynamic Gene Delivery and Its Applications” at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City. In May, he was an invited speaker at the National Seminar on the Curriculum of Pharmacy 
Higher Education in Indonesia and spoke on "The New Frontiers of Pharmaceutical Technological Innovations." Additionally, he served as the session chair on the "Synthetic/Molecular Conjugates and Physical Methods of Gene Delivery I" at the 20th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy held in Washington, D.C. from May 10-13. Finally, he gave a podium presentation at the same meeting on "New Recombinant Fusion Gene For Treatment of Obesity and Metabolic Disorders" along with Mingming Gao, Guisheng Zhang, Xin Li and Yueze Yang.
Dr. Merrill Norton, clinical associate professor, presented an encore workshop, “The Role of Shame in Addiction and Recovery,”  at The APhA Institute on Alcoholism and Other Drug Dependencies in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Dr. Chris Bland, clinical associate professor, published an article titled "Management of Viral CNS Infections: A primer for clinicians" that can be viewed here. He published a second article titled "Pharmacists' Familiarity with and Institutional Utilization of Rapid Diagnostic Technologies for Antimicrobial Stewardship," which can be found here. 

Media Mania


Hugh Chancy, center, a pharmacist from Hahira, Ga., speaking with the staff of Representative Hank Johnson, Democrat of Georgia.
Al Drago / The New York Times
A reporter from the New York Times followed the Georgia delegation of independent pharmacists to learn more about issues and proposed solutions. One of the photos in the article features Hugh Chancy ('88), Tina Chancy ('88) and Lance Boles ('99) as part of NCPA's Legislative Fly-In. View the full article here.
Dr. Norton Featured on WUGA Public Radio
Dr. Merrill Norton was cited as an expert on WUGA Public Radio in a story about opioid deaths and overdoses in Middle Georgia.  To listen to the story, click here.

Students: The Heart of the CoP


Christine Bech, a pharmacy student from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, is spending six months in Augusta to write a master’s thesis in clinical pharmacy. The thesis surrounds her ongoing research with Dr. Amber Clemmons, clinical associate professor at the distant campus in Augusta, and Dr. Imran Ahmad, a physician at the Augusta University Medical Center (AUMC). Their project is a review of all patients who received an autologous or allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) at the AUMC from February 2011 to February 2017. The project aims to evaluate the risk of acute kidney injury (AKI) during concomitant treatment with two different antimicrobial therapies: cefepime plus vancomycin versus piperacillin/tazobactam plus vancomycin. Christine will defend her thesis in Denmark in August and will later graduate with a Master’s degree.

Students Marked Satisfactory with Distinction
This year, the course coordinators for PHRM 5920 Clinical Seminar revised the faculty seminar evaluation to allow recognition for those students who exceeded expectations.  We would like to recognize the following P3 students who were deemed by a minimum of two faculty members as having delivered a "Satisfactory with Distinction" clinical seminar this year:

Athens Campus: 
Marin Abousaud
Hayden Black
Kyle Eve
Michael Owen Henry
Michelle Kho
Shifali Patel
Michelle Vu

Albany Campus:
Josh Patterson
Laura Slappey

Augusta Campus:
Rachel Bone
Paige Eber
Justin Joy

Savannah Campus:
Samantha Kerr
Hannah Matson

Staff Stories


Dr. Megan Morgan, CoP administrative associate for department head Dr. Dexi Liu, recently was appointed to a seat on Athens-Clarke County’s Historic...Preservation....Comm-ission, a volunteer board composed of ACC residents which helps the Mayor and the ACC Commission make decisions about how to best preserve and protect Athens-Clarke County’s historic resources. Dr. Morgan will start her three-year term of service next month. Congratulations on this prestigious honor!

PharmDawg Alum News

Angela Harrison Steed, a College of Pharmacy graduate from Monroe, sadly passed away from breast cancer on May 25 at the age of 60. Angela graduated from the College of Pharmacy in 1979. She had a long, successful career in pharmacy and was a  manager of Great Oaks Assisted Living Pharmacy in Monroe for 10 years until she retired in 2016. A memorial service was held for her on June 1 at the First United Methodist Church of Monroe. Angela will be greatly missed.

Calendar of Events

9/21-22: STaR 2017: Southern Translational Education and Research Conference
Augusta Marriott
The conference will include state-of-the-art topics in clinical and translational science as well as opportunities for attendees to showcase their research and network to develop regional collaborators. Excellence in clinical and translational science will be recognized during the meeting through STAR Graduate Student, Post-Doctoral Fellow and Young Investigator Awards.

Check out UGA events at
University of Georgia College of Pharmacy

250 W. Green Street, Athens, Georgia 30602
Phone 706-542-1911 | FAX 706-542-5269

Questions? Contact Mickey Montevideo
Director of Public Relations, Communications and Marketing, 706-542-5303.

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UGA College of Pharmacy · 490 Barnett Shoals Rd · Apt 918 · Athens, Georgia 30605 · USA

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