Farah Towfic has helped fast-track global health care advances, using her leadership skills, determination, and practical experience to develop critical standards for administering COVID-19 vaccines.
As director of chief executive officer operations for United States Pharmacopeia, the independent organization that sets medication quality standards, Towfic has proven her capacity to lead and serve.
After graduating from the University of Iowa and completing a residency in association management and leadership for the American Pharmacists Association Foundation, the Dubuque, Iowa, native returned to the Midwest to help patients manage their medication therapies—and to improve operations for pharmacies in Wisconsin and Iowa.
"As a student, Farah's qualities of leadership, and the ability to excite her peers, were evident," says Towfic's former employer, Robert J. Osterhaus (52BSP, 12DSC), of Osterhaus Pharmacy. "At our pharmacy, she not only demonstrated patient-centered clinical skills brilliantly, but also enhanced our use of technology and improved our outcomes."
Towfic's relationship-building experiences have been key to her career success. In May 2020, she was assigned to help develop the nation's COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit, which launched in January 2021. It allows health care providers to maximize doses and efficiently prepare, label, and administer the vaccines, which was particularly crucial during the initial period of limited vaccine supplies.
Towfic, who also volunteered to administer vaccinations, further advances her profession through service and is chair of the UI College of Pharmacy Genesis Advisory Board.
Donald E. Letendre, Iowa pharmacy's dean, is grateful for her support: "Farah embodies the college's core values by being an enthusiastic and intellectually driven lifelong learner, a highly dedicated patient-care provider, and a professionally engaged citizen."
Since 1963, the University of Iowa has annually recognized accomplished alumni and friends with Distinguished Alumni Awards. Awards are presented in seven categories: Achievement, Service, Hickerson Recognition, Faculty, Staff, Recent Graduate, and Friend of the University.