Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - (Page 19)
F A C U LT Y
Al was the professor who refused to allow the asphalt and exhaust of the East Denver campus interfere with how he taught. His graduate cancer biology class could often be seen meeting outside the pharmacy school under one of the few trees that remained on the CU Health Sciences Center campus. I came to learn that Al not only loved his science. Together with his lovely wife, Lynn, the Malkinsons were patrons of the arts. Perhaps his greatest passion was cinema – Al could’ve easily been a professional movie critic given his sharp insights and voracious appetite for films. He loved fine wine and great food, singing the praises of Denver’s restaurant renaissance in the mid1990s. Al also quietly wrote novels. Dark novels, he told me. You can’t find them on Amazon and I believe that some were published under a pseudonym. And travel. He repeatedly impressed upon me the need to schedule regular times away from the lab to live life and rejuvenate the creative mind. I still don’t do that well enough.
The four generaTion Club
Earlier I discussed the pivotal role Al played in my being hired into my first tenure-track faculty position. After being appointed, new assistant professors were evaluated three-and-ahalf years later to gauge whether we were on a favorable trajectory when we came up for tenure three years later. My mid-tenure evaluation was not going to be stellar. I was having trouble scoring a big NIH grant. Sure, I had won some teaching awards but I knew well that the pharmacy school was building its research stature. I was told, in essence, to get my s__t together. Al came down to my office with some advice: even if I was having trouble getting grants, I should do all I could to publish papers, even if they were not for the tier of journal to which I aspired. Being young and all full of piss and vinegar, I balked that I was not going to compromise my science and publish crappy papers just so I could get tenure. Al patiently listened and nodded as his face assumed a mischievous look. “Well, Dave,” he said, “that’s probably not the wisest path to tenure.”
But Al didn’t just wander off and let it lie. Together with our colleague Carlos, Al put together what I believe was a support group and intervention. It came to be known as the Four Generation Club – four guys representing four decades of pharmacy profs. The senior member, V. Gene Erwin, was a neuroscientist hired in the 1960s and held positions from dean and department chair to co-director of CU’s NIAAA-funded Alcohol Research Center. Al, of course, represented faculty hired in the 1970s. Carlos Enrique Catalano was a biochemist representing the 1980s. I rounded out the 4GenClub as the green prof hired in 1992. I look back now at how rare an opportunity this was for a junior faculty member. Each of these guys had plenty of other duties between academia and family. At their level of seniority, they had no real incentive to do this for me – they just did. In fact, Al, Gene, Carlos, and other senior faculty at Colorado spoiled me for the rest of my career. I have yet to experience this magnitude of community and shared responsibility again in my academic positions.
suPPorT of women sCienTisTs
Another area where Al inspired me as a mentor was in supporting women who chose science as a career. Al admired – I’d even say revered – women for all of their beauty, intellect, and creativity. Although Al was a great scientist who anyone would seek out as a graduate mentor, women seemed to sense that his laboratory was a safe and supportive environment. During my time with Al, his laboratory was almost exclusively composed of women scientists. When I left Colorado for North Carolina, Al agreed to take on my one remaining graduate student who had just passed her comps. Al was already on her committee but it was a particularly good match in my absence. As I write this, I am struck by how often my recollections such as these tend to occur when a person has passed. Rarely do we acknowledge our mentors while they are still with us. I’d rather be with him than without him for Al was a true gentleman, who touched each of us who knew him from across the breadth of his talents.
Praise for Progeny
Al’s obituary in the Boulder Daily Camera notes correctly that his love for science and movies paled in comparison to his love for his family. I never had the pleasure of spending much time with Al’s family. But I’ll never forget one statement he made about his son, Zak. It’s a story I’ve told many times in discussing parenting with friends. I believe that Zak was at the University of California at Berkeley and had come home to visit with his parents. Al and I were out enjoying a beverage with our biochemistry colleague, Carlos Catalano. I don’t recall exactly what Al told us about Zak’s latest activities, but can remember him saying, “My son is the most interesting person I know.” For a guy so well-versed in science and the arts to say that about his son tells me that I’d be honored to have Al and Lynn’s parenting skills.
For those in the scientific community who knew Al and wish to celebrate his life and career, plans are underway for an event at the CU Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences during the fall semester. Stay tuned.
Research scientist, inventor, professor Tony Jones, PhD, a long-time faculty member at our school for more than 30 years passed away Aug. 12. Born in 1920 in Leonard, TX, Tony served as a pharmacist mate in the U.S. Navy from 1942 to 1945. He married in 1947, graduated from the University of Texas in 1948 and received a PhD from the University of Colorado in Pharmaceutical Chemistry in 1957. He taught at CU from 1954-1987 and was a research scientist until the last months of his life. He had a very productive career in pharmaceutics and pharmaceutical chemistry that he continued even after his retirement. He had many signature achievements including formulations for Blistex and Clearasil among many other products. He was also the creator and co-editor of the American Drug Index and a member of multiple honor societies. Tony was the recipient of the School’s Distinguished Coloradan Award in 1991. In addition to his many professional accomplishments, Tony was a charter member and driving force behind the creation of Southern Hills Baptist Church and East Boulder Baptist Church. Services were held Aug. 17 at East Boulder Baptist Church.
Hospital pharmacist, world traveler, teacher Janella Olinger lost a courageous battle with metastatic melanoma Aug. 9 at her home in Golden, Colo. Born Nov. 19, 1963 in Spokane, Wash., Janella graduated from both high school and community college with an Associate’s Degree as well as a 4.0 GPA at the age of 17. She was accepted to University of California San Francisco and was the youngest student to ever enroll and graduate with a PharmD from the school. Her 30-year career began in California, took her across the world to Saudi Arabia and landed her in Colorado in 1996. She worked as a hospital pharmacist, within the pharmaceutical industry and in academia as an adjunct faculty member for the University of Colorado’s Non-traditional PharmD program. Through mentoring hundreds of students, Janella left a legacy that in turn elevated the profession of pharmacy. Those who knew Janella adored and cherished her and her loss makes this world seem a little empty for all of us. Services were held Aug. 19 at Evergreen Lake House.
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Contents (Page 1)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Dean’s Message (Page 2)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Dean’s Message (Page 3)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Centennial Scholars (Page 4)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Centennial Scholars (Page 5)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 6)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 7)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 8)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 9)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 10)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 11)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 12)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 13)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 14)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Commencement (Page 15)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Faculty (Page 16)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Faculty (Page 17)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Tributes (Page 18)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Tributes (Page 19)
Pharmacy Perspectives - Fall 2012 - Tributes (Page 20)