Classnotes - 1980's

After completing his internship at Preston and Northcote Community Hospital, Michael Barras (BPharm 1989) embarked on a gap year “long before Hamish and Andy”.  Upon his return, he worked for Echuca Regional Health for three years before making the move up north to Queensland. Throughout his professional career, Michael has returned to study on a number of occasions completing his Graduate Diploma in Clinical Pharmacy (2000) and completing his PhD in 2010.  Michael acknowledges his role as the Chair of the Research and Development Grant Advisory Committee (RDGAC) as one of his busiest and his two year pharmacy residency in Sheffield, UK as his most fun! When not following his beloved Collingwood FC in winter or the cricket in summer, Michael keeps himself busy as the Assistant Director of Pharmacy (Clinical) at Royal Brisbane & Women’s Hospital, as the Associate Professor, School of Pharmacy at The University of Queensland and as an Associate Professor, School of Pharmacy at Queensland University of Technology.  Michael still enjoys many aspects of his role including clinical research, teaching and mentoring, but two of his biggest joys outside of the work sphere, are travelling and his family. December 2014

After substantial experience as a clinical pharmacist at Western Hospital Footscray and in community pharmacy, David Ford (BPharm 1984) held Director of Pharmacy positions at Sunshine Hospital, Western Hospital and North Western Health between 1990 and 1999. He then took up the role of Director of Pharmacy and Chairman of the Drugs and Therapeutics Committee at Melbourne Health. Since 2003, David has also held the additional roles of Executive Director of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Services, and most recently, General Manager Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, also at Melbourne Health. David is a special lecturer and principle associate of the faculty's Department of Pharmacy Practice. October 2008

Mark Hutchings (BPharm 1981, MPharm 1987) began his career as a trainee at The Alfred, then tutored in pharmaceutics, microbiology and computing at the Victorian College of Pharmacy while completing a Master of Pharmacy. He helped roll out the first computer system in Victorian pharmacies, with the Pharmacy Guild and Foundation Medical Systems, while completing his thesis. Mark moved to Sydney in 1988 to work for Bayer in Regulatory Affairs, later becoming Regulatory Affairs Manager for Roussel Uclaf, Scientific Affairs Director for Hoechst Marion Roussel and Health Economics/Regulatory Affairs Director for Aventis. In 2002, Mark was Regulatory and Business Development Manager for Douglas Pharmaceuticals (generics) before becoming New Product Development Manager for iNova, where he is responsible for building the company's pipeline in Australia, New Zealand, Asia and South Africa. December 2010

Since she left the college, Annette Kerr (BPharm 1988) has worked in the pharmaceutical industry. Now Associate Director - Regulatory Affairs and Market Access at Biota Holdings, responsible for the development of compounds for treatment of respiratory syncytial virus, she has studied Intellectual Property Law and Pharmaceutical Economics, travelled the world and become mum to two boys. October 2008

Sue Kirsa (BPharm 1983, GradDipHospPharm 1995) moved to Traralgon and worked in a busy community pharmacy after graduation. In 1985, Sue returned to Melbourne to marry and commence a position at the Friendly Society Pharmacies in Wantirna and Mount Waverley before returning to hospital practice at Monash Medical Centre in 1989. After six months as a base grade pharmacist, she began what has become an enduring interest in oncology pharmacy practice. Between 1999 and 2005, she worked in drug usage evaluation and the Clinical Governance Unit at Austin Health. In 2005, Sue was appointed Director of Pharmacy at Peter Mac, a role she holds today. She maintains an active interest in the profession, taking on various roles within professional organisations. October 2008

Fiona Landgren (BPharm 1981) Fiona chose an unusual career path, pursing interests in preventative health care and health communications. She currently runs a consulting business, Communicating for Health, which specialises in health promotion as well as writing and communications for health professionals and consumers. Fiona enjoys getting people together and hopes to see a big crowd at the 25 year reunion in June. October 2008

David Manallack (BPharm 1982) this year celebrates 25 years since receiving his pharmacy degree. David went on to complete his Masters at the college and a PhD at the University of Melbourne. He gained international research experience when he worked at Smith Kline and French in the UK, a two-year position stretched to 15 years after he met his wife Anna and had two children. Returning to Australia in 2004, David worked in hospital pharmacy at the Dandenong Hospital and the Monash Medical Centre. Since 2006 he has been a senior lecturer in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry at the college and greatly enjoys having the opportunity to pass on his skills to students. October 2008

Elizabeth Manias (BPharm 1982, MPharm 1984) is Associate Professor in the School of Nursing and Social Work at the University of Melbourne. After undertaking pharmacy studies, she completed nursing qualifications including a Certificate of Critical Care and a Master of Nursing. In her PhD work, she examined how health professionals communicate with each other in the critical care environment, and determined enablers and barriers for effective collaboration. In her current role, she undertakes multidisciplinary research in patient safety and risk management, medication adherence, and links between complex communication processes and medication incidents. October 2008

Li Ling Ng (BPharm 1987) completed her traineeship at Prince Henry's Hospital before embarking on a trip to Singapore in 1990, where she worked for a year at the Kandang Kerbau Hospital for Women. In late 1991, Li Ling joined Western Hospital and was appointed senior oncology pharmacist in 1994. She was married later that year and has two sons, Michael (8) and James (5). October 2008

Andrew Rewell (BPharm 1980) spent two years travelling in Europe and working in corporate pharmacy in the UK before purchasing a pharmacy in Melbourne.  In 2000, he completed an MBA at Monash University and in conjunction with Priceline and two partners, opened the first Priceline Pharmacy in Australia.  He is currently Pharmacy Strategic Relationship Manager at Australian Pharmaceutical Industries (API) and Priceline, a role that encompasses strategy development, strategic relationship management, professional services development and pharmacy industry education. Andrew is a member of the Guardian Board and Sigma Pharmacist Advisory Board, has chaired an Aged Care Board and served on the national board of Australian College of Pharmacy (ACP). He is a regular presenter at pharmacy conferences and pharmacy education events. June 2013

Carolyn Rutherford (BPharm 1989) undertook her traineeship at Prince Henry's Hospital and worked as a clinical pharmacist at The Alfred for the next five years. In 1995 she was appointed Health Economist at Glaxo Wellcome/GlaxoSmithKline where she worked for seven years before joining CSL in the same position for a year. She is currently undertaking consultancy work as a health economist for KMC Healthcare. Throughout her professional career Carolyn has also worked in various retail and hospital pharmacy positions and continues to do so today in a part-time capacity. In addition to her pharmacy qualifications, she holds a Master of Business Administration, a Graduate Diploma of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and a Certificate of Health Economics.

Peter Ryan (BPharm 1981) Peter moved to South Australia, then Broken Hill before embarking on a 'sea change' to the Gold Coast (after a working holiday in Oxford) to seek a bit of balance and sunshine. Peter lives in Main Beach with his wife Annette and is a keen traveller. He has an avid interest in photography and is putting together the photo extravaganza for the class of 1981's 25 year reunion in June. October 2008

For Ingrid Sand (BPharm 1983, Grad Dip Epidem), working across three quite different fields of pharmacy has brought valuable professional interactions, experiences and challenges. As a Clinical Research Associate with GSK, Ingrid has managed trials across a range of therapy areas, including oncology, HIV/AIDs and respiratory disease. In her multifunctional role at GSK over the past 20 years, Ingrid has also worked in GSK Medical Affairs as a scientific advisor and trainer. Graduating from the Victorian College of Pharmacy in Parkville, Ingrid completed her traineeship at the Alfred Hospital, where she commenced work as a hospital pharmacist. It was halfway through her 10 years at the Alfred that Ingrid developed an interest in clinical trials, completing a Graduate Diploma in Epidemiology and Medical Biostatistics at Melbourne University. She went on to become Senior Pharmacist in charge of Drug Information and Clinical Trials at the Alfred, taking on active committee roles with the hospital and Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia.  In 1994, Ingrid made the move to industry, joining Glaxo—now GSK—where she continues to work to this day as Senior Clinical Research Associate and Project Lead. Throughout her career, Ingrid has maintained an active role in retail pharmacy, working part-time in addition to her ongoing work at GSK. But perhaps the most valuable experiences and challenges for Ingrid come from being a parent of two young adults/teenagers. She also plays an active role in her children’s schools and local community. Spare time is scarce, but classical music, walking and reading are at the top of her list. December 2014

Jennifer Semmler (nee Lewis) (BPharm 1983) worked as a community and hospital relief pharmacist after graduation. In 1988 she commenced a wine making degree part-time while raising her children and completed her honours in 1997 while tutoring chemistry at Victoria University of Technology and microbiology at Charles Sturt University. She tutored in pharmaceutics at the college and lectured in wine making at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE until 2000, when she relocated to South Australia. Jenny now works for Hardy Wine Company as quality systems manager for Berri Estates, the largest winery in Australia. She has been responsible for ISO 9000 and HACCP risk management systems at the site and is cooperatively developing and trialling new wine soft packaging. October 2008

Catherine Snell (BPharm 1989) has been employed in many positions and places since graduating. She worked in hospital pharmacy at the Austin Hospital and Peter Mac, and in locum positions across the UK during a working holiday that also involved work at GlaxoSmithKline and the Royal Naval Hospital, Gosport. She continued her military medicine working life back in Australia at 3 Combat Support Hospital (Raaf Richmond, NSW). Throughout her career, Catherine worked in community pharmacy in Portland, Sale, Echuca, Sunbury and the Melbourne metro area. During a hiatus to raise her two children, she also completed a Graduate Diploma in Clinical Epidemiology and hopes to build on this soon. Back in Melbourne, Catherine says her next move will largely depend on where the RAAF sends her partner! May 2009

Following graduation, George Tambassis (BPharm 1986) worked in community pharmacy before, in 1988, purchasing the first of a group of five pharmacies he currently owns. He was recently appointed President of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Victorian branch. For the past five years he has also been a member of the Australian Community Pharmacy Authority, a government body that oversees licensing requirements for the establishment of new pharmacies or the relocation of existing ones. In 2010 he was a member of the organising committee for the inaugural Pharmacy Guild of Australia Offshore Business Conference held in Penang. George balances the busy schedule of owning and operating five community pharmacies with an interest in cycling and soccer.

After training at the Austin, Robin Whyte (BPharm 1980) worked as a clinical pharmacist at the Western Hospital before travelling overseas. In the UK she worked as a formulation scientist, clinical trials manager and marketing manager in the pharmaceutical industry. After completing a Master of Business Administration at the London Business School, Robin returned to Australia to join Accenture Consulting, where she became a senior manager in the Health Care Strategy Practice. Robin has held roles as CEO of a number of health, aged care and community services organisations. Currently, she is CEO of the Frankston Mornington Peninsula Medicare Local, part of a nationwide network established under the Australian Government’s National Health Reform to address service improvements in primary healthcare. January 2013

With talents across a range of areas, Leonie Wohl (nee McKeough) (BPharm 1980) began her career as an inpatient pharmacist at Wangaratta District Base Hospital.  Leonie undertook a Graduate Diploma of Hospital Pharmacy and a Masters in Pharmacy studies in 1982 while working as a discharge pharmacist at Queen Victoria Hospital. She then became retail manager at a pharmacy in Bendigo. In 1983, Leonie moved across the globe to San Francisco to marry lawyer and long term pen pal, Steven Wohl.  Keen to continue practicing pharmacy in America, Leonie worked in finance for a short period of time while studying at the University of California San Francisco to gain the required qualifications.  She was then employed as an inpatient pharmacist with Kaiser Permanente, the largest integrated health maintenance organization in the United States. Leonie was promoted to Assistant Chief Pharmacist in the outpatient setting shortly thereafter.  She was the first clinical pharmacist in the Northern California Kaiser Region, and held various roles during her career with Kaiser Permanente spanning more than 30 years. Leonie has two boys and currently works on-call in retail pharmacy while spending her spare time doing volunteer work with seniors.  A fan of the arts, Leonie enjoys Bollywood dancing, watercolour and acrylic painting, travel, documentary films, theatre, music and plays piano. December 2015