Famous Pharmacists To Inspire You
Greatness knows no boundaries. Commitment to duty and your fellow man have no limits. From the lowest employee to the greatest leader, a simple idea or discovery can change a person from player to power broker. From an unknown to a part of the collective consciousness. Doctors have done it. So have professors and other professionals. Changing history is never easy, but these five individuals found a way to take their career path – pharmacist -and turn it into an important part of the profession’s narrative. From important medical discoveries to the corridors of leadership, they’ve made a major difference, and how they did it might even inspire you. Check out these inspirational pharmacists:
Discoverer of Penicillin
Yes, the myths are mostly true. This Scottish scientist “accidentally” discovered the original antibiotic while working on a way to treat WWI soldiers suffering from sepsis. After finding antiseptics to be more harmful than good, he stumbled upon the mold known as Penicillium notatum after leaving some research samples unattended during a planned vacation. He came back to discover the bacteria had died, and what killed it. The rest is history.
Founded the Boots Pharmacy
You might think that affordable healthcare for the disenfranchised and other low income individuals is a modern concept, but it was always a part of his well-known company’s raison d’etra. In fact, when their doors opened in 1877 (140 years ago), the first Boots Pharmacy advertised itself as providing “health for a shilling.” Such a deal became instantly popular. Still going strong today, the brand is known for offering quality service at highly competitive prices.
Pemberton was a very successful chemist who, unfortunately, was hiding a horrible secret. He was addicted to morphine. Hoping to find a cure, he began experimenting and came up with something called Pemberton’s French Wine Cola. When concerns were voiced about the elixir’s high alcohol content (funny, no when cared about the cocaine content), he tinkered with the recipe and came up with the popular soft drink we know and love today.
Vice-President of the United States
He served as a US Senator from 1949 to 1968, and again from 1971 to 1978. He was handpicked by Lyndon B. Johnson to be his Vice President and actually ran against Richard Nixon for the highest office in the land (he lost). He was also a well known intellectual and member of academia who, in public office, was instrumental in helping to fight racial inequality. It’s a pretty amazing rise to power for a young man who initially went to college to help out with his father’s pharmacy.
In the late 1700s (more than 300 years ago), this German scientist began looking in the pharmacological effects of opium on the human body. He managed to isolate something he called “morphium” (named after the Greek God of Dreams, Morpheus) and wrote a comprehensive paper of all aspects of the discovery. It remains the first ever discovery of an alkaloid isolated from a plant and the beginning of what we now call “herbal” or “medicinal” herbs.
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