VOL. 121 | NO. 41 | Friday, February 17, 2006
Gourley's Love of His Profession Reaches Across the World
By Lane Gardner Camp
"It was a very nice award - presented in Hungarian for the audience, but translated for me at the same time. I will always remember it."
- Dr. Dick R. Gourley
Name: Dr. Dick R. Gourley
Position: Professor and dean of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center's College of Pharmacy
Basics: Gourley, who grew up in Kentucky, has stretched his horizons internationally, recently winning a lifetime achievement award from the Hungarian Private Pharmacists' Association.
Dr. Dick Gourley, who grew up in Paducah, Ky., used to enjoy visiting his local pharmacy and wondering what it would be like to work behind the drug counter.
But his horizons have widened considerably since then, with his most recent accolade coming from colleagues in Europe.
Gourley, dean of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center's College of Pharmacy, recently received a lifetime achievement award from the Hungarian Private Pharmacists' Association at the group's national convention in Siofok, Hungary. He was the first non-Hungarian ever to receive it.
"It was a very nice award - presented in Hungarian for the audience, but translated for me at the same time," Gourley said. "I will always remember it."
But if colleagues' opinions are any indicator, Gourley himself is far more memorable.
"Professor Gourley is a true professional - very popular with his friendly manner, wedded to his profession and convinced of the value of pharmacists to health care and to the patient," said Dr. Antal Samu, HPPA's immediate past president. Samu has known Gourley since 1988 and got him involved with HPPA.
A life in transition
Immediately after receiving two pharmacy degrees from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville by 1970, Gourley embarked on his career as an assistant professor of clinical pharmacy at Mercer University in Atlanta.
In 1972, Gourley took a position at the University of Nebraska in Omaha as assistant professor and founding chair of the department of clinical pharmacy. He soon was promoted to full professor.
Gourley returned to Mercer in 1984 as dean and professor, and in 1987, took on additional responsibility as interim provost before moving to Memphis in December 1989 to assume his current position as professor and dean at UT.
There, Gourley is responsible for all educational, research, patient care and community service programs. He maintains a teaching role and participates in grant development and fund-raising for the college's 553 students. Attendance is expected to expand to 800 by the fall of 2008.
A man on the move
Gourley has continued to distinguish himself as a pharmacist, educator and administrator over the years.
In addition to post-graduate work at Harvard University in health systems and higher education management, he is widely published, edits textbooks and lectures around the world. Much of his international work involves HPPA.
"Over the past 20 years, I have had faculty from Mercer and UT participate in (HPPA's) annual meeting and have worked with the association in the development of pharmacy service programs ... We are also working with Debrecen University (in Budapest) to develop new educational programs," Gourley said.
At UT, one of Gourley's challenges is to raise additional money to construct a new College of Pharmacy building on the site of Baptist Memorial Hospital's old Physicians and Surgeons Building, which was imploded last year.
"This will be the first time the College of Pharmacy will have its entire faculty in one location in over 40 years," Gourley said.
Construction on the building should wrap up by September 2008.