Pharmacist Spotlight: Greg & Lisa Flax
This month’s spotlight features Greg and Lisa Flax. Greg and Lisa are the pharmacists and owners of G&L Health Mart Pharmacy in Ness City, Kan. and Rush County Health Mart Pharmacy in La Crosse, Kan. They shared why they decided to become pharmacy owners and how that has resulted in numerous relationships being formed over the years in their communities.
When did you realize that you wanted to become a pharmacist and why?
Lisa – When I went to college at KU, I knew I wanted to pursue a career in a medical field because I enjoyed math and science. I considered medicine, laboratory and pharmacy. Back then, there was not the emphasis to really know the profession you were getting in to, but pharmacy has been a great choice for me and my family. (Greg and I met in pharmacy school by the way!)
Greg – For me there was not a specific time that I realized pharmacy was right for me. My family physician recommended that pharmacy school might be more sensible than medical school and I took that advice and simply committed to that path. I really didn’t have a mentor in pharmacy to follow but I’ve had great people in my life inspiring me all the way. Being a pharmacist has been a very rewarding decision.
Why did you decide to become pharmacy owners and what do you find most rewarding about independent pharmacy?
After we were married and had both been working in retail chain pharmacy, we decided if the right opportunity to purchase a pharmacy presented itself, we would give it a serious look. That opportunity came along about two years later when we were contacted by Gomer Stukesbary of Ness City about purchasing his pharmacy. I (Greg) grew up in Ness County and was familiar with the pharmacy and the area so it seemed to be a good fit.
Through divine providence, it has been a very rewarding experience for us both. Among the many rewards we’ve gained, one of the most special is seeing numerous students from the area choose pharmacy as their profession.
What advice would you offer students still in pharmacy school or those considering becoming a pharmacist?
For students that are considering a career in pharmacy, we would suggest exploring all the options that pharmacy can provide. When we graduated, it seems there were only about three paths – retail, hospital, and pharmaceutical sales. The paths now have greatly expanded and provide many more opportunities to new graduates.
Also, be sure to spend some time with a pharmacist. Take advantage of the time in your clinical rotations to gain the information from your preceptors. They can be a wealth of information about the path they have chosen.
What are you most proud of that your pharmacy has accomplished?
We are most proud that we have built trust and relationships that have allowed us to prosper for over 28 years. That trust has been built with our surrounding communities, many different medical providers, staff and personnel, our employees, and especially our patients.
We have also built relationships as mentors for several students in our area that have gone on to become pharmacists at the University of Kansas School of Pharmacy, including two of our daughters.