The Road Less Traveled

Rear Admiral Pamela Schweitzer shared insights and advice gained over her extensive career in pharmacy during her January talk, “The Road Less Traveled,” for the school’s John Biles Speaker Series on Leadership. Her experience includes serving as pharmacy director at the Veterans Health Administration in South Dakota, being a clinical specialty consultant for the Indian Health Service in Arizona and her current role as assistant surgeon general and chief pharmacy officer for the U.S. Public Health Service.

The opportunity is “off the charts” for pharmacists to make an impact in healthcare today, she said. “We need to push ourselves and be at the table,” she urged pharmacy students.

The speech was something of a homecoming for Schweitzer, who is originally from Orange County and was born into a family of Trojans with a passion for healthcare. She is an alumna of the USC Price School of Public Policy’s executive master of health administration program. Her father and uncle attended the USC School of Pharmacy and her brother completed both his undergraduate and medical degrees at USC.

The USC John Biles Speaker Series on Leadership is part of the Margaret and John Biles Leadership Center, created through a generous gift from Ninetta and Gavin Herbert. It will feature thought leaders from industry, health care practice, policymaking and academia whose work pushes boundaries and breaks new ground.