Erin Nunan named 2016 PSA Early Career Pharmacist of the Year

July 29, 2016 As a part-owner in the Studfield Pharmacy in Wantrina South in Melbourne, Erin has shown outstanding qualities to improve health in the Third World as part of her quest in pharmacy abroad.  She left Australia to work in very difficult and remote areas to improve the lives of thousands of people. Erin has worked in the Solomon Islands with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to draft the Solomon Islands’ National Medicines Policy, worked for Aspen Medical in Timor-Leste and has been involved in helping to reduce AIDS in Swaziland, which has the highest HIV rate in the world, through the Clinton Health Initiative.

Among her many talents, Erin is fluent in Solomon Islands’ Pidgin language and is also studying law at the University of New England.

Media contact: Brad Watts
PSA Executive Director, Communications 
0487 922 176


Amy Page named PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year for 2015

A Melbourne pharmacist with a strong interest in deprescribing, the Quality Use of Medicines, geriatrics, pharmacy education and herbal medicines has been named the PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year for 2015 during a ceremony at PSA15 in Sydney today

Amy Page has received the award also in recognition of the unique balance of academic, clinical and policy development she brings to her work. Ms Page works in a GP clinic and is an accredited pharmacist who has completed a great many home medicines reviews.

She is completing her PhD on deprescribing, which at its core is about improving the quality of life of consumers who often don’t have a voice, such as elderly and those with dementia.

Ms Page said she was humbled to be the recipient of the 2015 PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year award.

“I am particularly grateful when looking at the exceptional pharmacists who are previous recipients of the award,” she said.

“This award is a celebration of the teams I work with. I’m lucky enough to have worked with passionate, strong teams: from the rural interdisciplinary team in Geraldton and the network of rural pharmacy academics, to the research team at University of Western Australia, and the primary health care team in Melbourne. I am privileged to work with amazing health care professionals who inspire me every day.

“The award also acknowledges the influence that other people have had on my career. In particular, my family are always supportive and encouraging. I have also been blessed to have amazing teachers and mentors from undergraduate studies through to my wonderful PhD supervisors.

National President of PSA, Joe Demarte, said Ms Page was well-known in academic pharmacy circles as a progressive young pharmacist whose opinions and insight into the profession were well beyond her years.

“She is a very driven pharmacist who strives to improve the health outcomes of elderly patients and other at-risk groups through a unique combination of direct clinical support through HMRs and pharmacy practice, but notably working in non-dispensing or non-traditional roles,” he said.

Brett Barons, General Manager Symbion, sponsors of the awards for the 11th consecutive year, said Ms Page was one of the few pharmacists in Australia to work in GP clinics providing medication advice to GPs at the time of prescribing and education on quality use of medicines.

“She is a wonderful example for all young pharmacists and for the profession as a whole,” Mr Barons said.


Media contact:   Peter Waterman
Public Affairs Director
0487 922 176

NSW rural pharmacist Taren Gill named 2014 PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year

NSW rural pharmacist Taren Gill has been named the PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year for 2014 during a ceremony at PAC14 today for her work as a community pharmacist and innovator in pharmacy practice.

Ms Gill’s award also recognises her extensive aged care work and her university mentoring and teaching as well as her commitment to quality program development.

Ms Gill said: “I am so pleased that the PSA recognises the achievements of early career pharmacists and I am excited and humbled to be receiving this recognition.

“I see this as a celebration of my efforts and challenges of growing as a professional while the pharmacy industry is changing, and I will use it as a springboard for further learning and development.”

National President of PSA, Grant Kardachi, said Ms Gill had proven at a young age that she was inspirational and was willing to move the profession forward through practical innovation and commitment.

“Her work in her community pharmacy has seen a wide range of practice innovations implemented which have resulted in better service for customers and as well as greatly improved business outcomes,” Mr Kardachi said.

“She is well known for her penchant for innovation and is committed to making sure pharmacists channel their enthusiasm into the programs the customers and community need. She believes in equality of health care no matter where you live.”

Brett Barons, General Manager – Pharmacy, of Symbion, sponsors of the awards for the tenth consecutive year, said Ms Gill stood out among an exceptional field of candidates.

“Taren is clearly very excited about the future of the profession and the role pharmacists can play moving forward,” Mr Barons said.

“She is an advocate of collaboration with other health professionals in improving health outcomes in the community and she leads by example.”


Media contact:   Peter Waterman
Public Affairs Director
0487 922 176

2013 Young Pharmacist of the Year, Katie Hayes

A commitment to the pharmacy profession and to ensuring pharmacists make a noticeable difference in the community has seen Tasmanian pharmacist Katie Hayes being named PSA’s Young Pharmacist of the Year for 2013.

Ms Hayes has demonstrated an intense commitment to seeing pharmacies transition from being traditional places of medication supply to destinations where customers are provided with a whole range of pharmacy experiences and as well as a broad scope of health solutions.

She practises what she preaches and has shifted the role of the pharmacist at the pharmacy she works in to include more interaction with customers.

Ms Hayes said the award recognised the influence that others have had in her career.

“I have a very supportive family who have encouraged me and have been extremely patient throughout my career,” she said.

“Without my wonderful staff at our community pharmacy in Risdon Vale, we could not have achieved half of what I had hoped.”

Patrick Davies, CEO of Symbion, sponsors of the awards for the ninth consecutive year, said Ms Hayes was one of the new generation of pharmacist leading changes and innovation.

“These young pharmacists are our future and Katie stands out amongst them for her forward-thinking, her commitment and her willingness to put into action what she believes will improve the profession and the experience for her customers.

“She is helping to shape the pharmacy of the future, a pharmacy which will be able to grow and remain viable in the face of changes to health systems and economic fluctuations.”

2012 Young Pharmacist of the Year: Brooke Myers

In the citation accompanying her nomination for the Young Pharmacist of the Year, Brooke Myers’ nominators wrote that she was making a great difference in underprivileged pharmacy student communities worldwide.

‘First PNG, now Sri Lanka and Pacific communities, the impact of her work is enormous and mirrors her work at home as an Early Career Pharmacist leader and champion,’ they wrote.

Brooke said she was humbled, but thrilled to have won the award for 2012.

‘My love for pharmacy started as a bright eyed and bushy tailed 17-year‑old student pharmacist at James Cook University in 2003,’ she said.

‘Since then I have endeavoured to immerse myself in health education and promotion and to make the most of any opportunity I have been given. We are part of a brilliant profession, one that has already given me more and pushed me further than I ever imagined it would. This award is the highlight of my career.

‘I feel honoured to be on the same list as the previous recipients of this award, who have each inspired me by their enthusiasm and dedication. I am encouraged to be a better pharmacist every day by the people that I work for, and with, and by the strong mentors I have found within the profession. I am also encouraged by the students I teach and the patients I see, what an honour it is that we can positively influence the health care of our country.

‘I am extremely grateful to the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, and to Symbion, for this accolade. I am dedicated to this profession and cannot wait to part of the future of pharmacy’.

– from Australian Pharmacist November 2012

2011 Young Pharmacist of the Year: Chris Freeman

A dedication to the profession of pharmacy, and a motivation to practice within the profession, saw Queensland pharmacist Chris Freeman named the Young Pharmacist of the Year.

Mr Freeman is renowned for his commitment to collaborative health care. His PhD aims to investigate integrating a pharmacist into a primary health care team with an overall goal to increase the quality use of medicines. For the past two and a half years he has worked in an integrative environment and has facilitated other pharmacists into this environment across Australia.

Mr Freeman said, ‘I am honoured to receive the PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year Award. Looking back at the previous recipients, I am encouraged by the impact they have been able to have on our profession.

‘I hope that my career will also positively influence the pharmacy profession. I would like to thank the many people who have acted as mentors and as guides during my career. It is through their good grace that I have been able to achieve what I have to date.

‘I believe it is an exciting time to be a young pharmacist, with the evolution of the health system we are ideally placed to extend our roles and ultimately provide positive health outcomes for patients.’

– from Australian Pharmacist, November 2011

2010 Young Pharmacist of the Year: Vivienne Mak

South Australian pharmacist Vivienne Mak graduated in 2006 and worked as a full-time community pharmacist before returning to the University of South Australia in 2009 to complete her PhD, focusing on pharmacy practice.

She was awarded the Australian Postgraduate Award and Sansom Pharmacy Fund Research Scholarship to pursue a Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacy.

‘I am passionate about the future of the pharmacy profession and have an immense interest in improving the direction of pharmacy and the way pharmacists practice. This has sparked my interest to pursue a career in research to promote re-professionalisation,’ she said.

‘With the current changes in the health system and within the pharmacy profession, it is an exciting time as a young pharmacist to be a part of the pharmacy profession.’

She actively contributes to the pharmacy profession as a council member of PSA South Australia Branch and as chair of PSA’s SA Early Career Pharmacist Working Group.

‘I am deeply humbled and honoured to receive this award. It provides a unique opportunity for me to reach for a higher level of professionalism and innovation within the pharmacy profession. I look forward to continuing to contribute to the profession and to pursue research excellence.’

2009 Young Pharmacist of the Year: Bruce Elliot


A commitment to improving pharmacy practice through high-quality continuing professional development and practice support has seen Queensland community pharmacist Bruce Elliot named the 2009 PSA Young Pharmacist of the Year.

‘I love health and have always had an interest in health. When I started at university I really fell in love with the profession and the role it plays in the community,’ Mr Elliot said.

Announcing the award at PAC, National President Warwick Plunkett said Mr Elliot, who works as a community pharmacist in Yeppoon, was an example that all young pharmacists could aspire to.

‘Bruce, who is Vice-President of the Queensland Branch of the PSA and a National Board member of the Society, is an outstanding role model for our next generation of pharmacists and a future leader of our profession,’ Mr Plunkett said.

Mr Elliot said he was humbled to be the recipient of the award ‘particularly as I look back at previous winners who have been a personal inspiration to me and no doubt to many others in the profession.’

‘I have been blessed over my career to work alongside many talented pharmacists who have inspired me to continually seek practice improvement.

‘As I reflect on my career to date, I can now see what a tremendous influence their mentoring has provided and I am so grateful for this. Pharmacy is a great profession to be a part of because of its increasing diversity.

‘The scope of practice is constantly being extended and there is no doubting the integral role pharmacists play in primary health care in Australia. I look forward to continuing to contribute to the profession and working with pharmacists from across  Australia to help shape our future role.’

Mr Elliot said opportunities from living and working in regional areas had helped in creating a rewarding career.

– from Australian Pharmacist November 2009

‘I am proud that my work in delivering quality continuing professional education has benefited other regional pharmacists whose tireless efforts in their communities should not be overlooked,’ he said.