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2017 Award Winners

7 Dec 2018 12:07 PM | Anonymous

2017 Award Winners 


Paul G. Pierpaoli Award: David Girouard, RPh

The Paul G. Pierpaoli Award is given annually to a CSHP member of the highest integrity who best exemplifies the profession of pharmacy through significant contributions, of a long-term nature, to the practice of pharmacy in Connecticut and the development of high standards of pharmacy practice. 

To many of you in this room, Dave Girouard requires no introduction. Currently, Dave serves as the Director of Pharmacy for Hartford Healthcare’s Central Region, which includes the Hospital of Central Connecticut, MidState Medical Center, and Bradley Hospital. As a leader in HHC, Dave is widely respected – over the past five years he has been integral in developing a system approach to Pharmacy Services by promoting and developing a P&T System Council, of which he currently serves as the Chairman. Furthermore, Dave has been an active member of CSHP for over thirty years, serving as President in 1994 and co-President in 1995, and has encouraged pharmacists to become more involved in CSHP, including our new incoming President, Nicholas Tessier.

In regards to the award and development of high standard of pharmacy practice, Dave’s efforts at his own institution, but really across the state, in assuring comprehensive understanding and compliance to USP 797 and 900 is unparalleled. This issue, especially after the events in Massachusetts in 2012, impacts us all. With more stringent requirements came more scrutiny. Dave and his team experienced a challenge but persevered, all the while sharing ever bit of what they learned with the broader statewide community so that the rest of us could learn alongside him – many of us owe him and his team a debt of gratitude for their transparency. 

Finally, just to read an excerpt from one of Dave’s nominations: “Here at HHC, we have set Leadership Behaviors that we strive to live by in our professional work. Two of these behaviors, “look in the mirror first – be accountable” and “Teach, Coach, and Mentor”, are consistently demonstrated by Dave in his effort to improve our knowledge and understanding of USP.”

Pharmacist of the Year Award: Dr. Ralph Riello, PharmD, BCPS

The Pharmacist of the Year Award is given annually to a CSHP member of the highest integrity who best exemplifies the profession of pharmacy through their cooperation with the entire health care team, service to the profession of pharmacy and service to the community.

Dr. Riello has been a practicing pharmacist since 2014 when he began his career as a PGY-1 Pharmacy Resident at Yale New Haven Hospital. Since that time, he has developed his role as the clinical pharmacist in the Coronary Intensive Care Unit (CICU) at Yale New Haven Hospital. To be frank, reading his nominations for receiving this award was an inspiring experience for me. Personally, I feel that educating, precepting, and mentoring the next generation of pharmacy students and residents is a pillar of our profession. It is blatantly clear that Dr. Riello takes this aspect of our profession to heart. As a preceptor for Connecticut’s two schools of pharmacy, as well as the PGY1 and PGY2 Programs at Yale, Ralph instills a deep passion for clinical pharmacy in his mentees.            

Ralph’s dedication to his craft is on display every day, not only in his role as a preceptor and mentor, but in his relationships with his team members and the multiple initiatives he oversees at Yale related to cardiovascular care, including: a direct-oral anticoagulant pharmacy consult program, development of diuresis protocols, a digoxin overdose stat protocol, and continual education of his colleagues as a trusted member of the team.

As an example of Ralph’s contributions, please allow me to read a small excerpt from one of his nominations, “Ralph is genuinely loved and appreciated by everyone he comes in contact with. To see this level of professional development and skill so early into a pharmacist’s career is not only rare, it’s unprecedented. He is responsible for some of my fondest and most rewarding professional memories. I hope to someday (with a great deal of hard work) be as accomplished, respected, and fulfilled as Ralph Riello.” I think these words are a testament to Dr. Riello – this profession, and our professional community, is lucky to have pharmacists like Ralph who not only pours their heart and soul into the work they do every day, but instill that type of passion into the next generation of practitioners.

2017  Meritorious Achievement Award: Dr. Elizabeth Cohen, PharmD, BCPS

The Meritorious Achievement Award is given annually to a CSHP member who has played a significant role in either 1) an innovation which has contributed to the enhancement of patient care within the individual’s practice setting, resulted in an original contribution to pharmacy administration, or expanded the role/impact of CSHP, 2) had a role in an innovative educational program designed to improve the practice of pharmacy or finally 3) produced a significant publication in a peer-reviewed journal.

Dr. Cohen, or Liz as many of her colleagues know her, has been a practicing pharmacist since 2013 when she began her career as a PGY-1 Pharmacy Resident at Yale New Haven Hospital. Since that time, she completed a second year residency in solid organ transplantation and continues to work within the Yale Health-System as a Clinical Specialist in the same field. She currently plays an essential role as a PGY1 preceptor to Yale’s many PGY1 residents, and serves as that departments Director for the PGY2 Residency Program for Solid Organ Transplantation. Lastly, she serves as an adjunct faculty member for four different Schools of Pharmacy.

In her role, Liz is an essential partner on a multidisciplinary team that cares for some of Yale’s most vulnerable and high-risk patients. However, her dedication to growing the profession goes beyond the walls of her institution as evidence by her multiple national          

Today, we acknowledge Liz’s significant contribution to the realm of solid organ transplant literature - specifically, her recent publication in the American Journal of Transplantation, which is the fields most prestigious journal. Her paper focused on the use belatacept in kidney transplant recipients who are infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus, or HIV – an ever expanding, but extremely complicated and at-risk, patient population.


2017 Student Award Winners 

The Connecticut Society of Health System Pharmacy Excellence Award is awarded to students who have provided significant contributions to CSHP, and demonstrated both leadership amongst their peers and a significant interest in pursuing a career in health system pharmacy. We have two recipients this year, one from each of the state’s Schools of Pharmacy.

Please join me in congratulating John Pernyeszi of The University of Saint Joseph’s School of Pharmacy and Taylor Harkness of the University of Connecticut’s School of Pharmacy for their contributions to the profession and being awarded this year’s CSHP Excellence Award.

About CSHP

Since 1948, the Connecticut Society of Health-System Pharmacists has represented the professional interests and provided professional development for CT pharmacists, educators and pharmacists in training.


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