More than 400 alumni, faculty, staff and students turned out for the School of Pharmacy’s Centennial Celebration gala at the Regent Beverly Wilshire.
Author Art Ulene, a member of the School of Pharmacy’s board of councilors, served as master of ceremonies April 10.
USC President Steven B. Sample thanked longtime supporters of the school and said, “All of you here tonight can take great pride in the fact that you support a school that is working not only to advance the field of pharmacy, but also to improve the lives of people around the world.”
Commemorating a century of progressive instruction and pioneering research, the gala honored special individuals whose unwavering support has helped the school extend the horizons of professional pharmacy.
Honorees included Jane and Gale Bensussen, Josephine and William Heeres, and Helena and DeWight Titus, who were instrumental in a variety of projects to benefit current students, faculty and alumni.
The Bensussens led the effort to establish the school’s Laboratory for Analytical Research and Services in Complementary Therapeutics, and the Leiner Free Radical Research Laboratory of Enrique Cadenas.
The Heeres committed a planned gift to establish an endowed chair in community pharmacy � the first of its kind at any pharmacy school in the nation. In 1998, the Heeres’ lead gift of over $300,000 created a matching gift program that raised more than $1 million in gifts and pledges that was used for the complete renovation of teaching facilities.
The Tituses made a substantial gift in honor of their family to name the Titus Family Department of Pharmacy. The endowment upholds the department’s mission to enrich the drug therapy knowledge of health-care practitioners through educational interventions.
In addition, Dean Timothy M. Chan was recognized for his 24 years of service to the USC School of Pharmacy. After more than a decade of leadership, Chan will step down from the deanship June 30. He will embark on a year-long sabbatical to explore complementary and alternative medicine before returning to USC as dean emeritus and a faculty member.
Since his appointment, Chan has been active in promoting new directions in pharmacy education and advocating a new pharmacy practice paradigm both in the United States and in the Pacific Rim.
“In 1995, I accepted the deanship with full realization that I was responsible for guiding an institution with a 90-year history of innovation and leadership,” Chan said. “Ten years later, the school continues to lead the way in curricular reform, learner-oriented teaching methods and creativity in both clinical and basic science research. It is no surprise that the USC School of Pharmacy is considered one of the top pharmacy schools in the country.”
Founded in 1905, the School of Pharmacy was the first pharmacy school established in Southern California. The school was also the first in the nation to grant the Doctor of Pharmacy professional degree and offer a clinical pharmacy program. Approximately 50 percent of the pharmacists in the region are graduates of USC.
Exceeding the school’s initial goal of $25 million, the Centennial Celebration fund raised $30 million since 2000 for curriculum enhancements, scholarship funding, renovations, and scholarly research. Proceeds from the centennial gala alone totaled $500,000.