October 2014 – When pharmacist Anne Maheu first joined the Canadian Foundation for Pharmacy, she was in the thick of the pharma industry as Director of Healthcare Stakeholder Relations at Pfizer Canada.
“Executive Director Dayle Acorn had come to our company to talk about CFP but I’d never heard of it,” she says. “Still, Dayle thought I was enthusiastic and energetic so he asked me to join him.” That was 2008 and she has been with CFP ever since, including four years on the executive board. In fact, she will be taking over the helm as President next year.
“For me, I wanted to get closer to the world of pharmacy and with the Foundation, I feel that we are really facilitating the sharing of information and getting people to think about the profession,” says Maheu. “It’s rewarding to be right in the action, organizing events that will propel pharmacy forward.”
Maheu says an organization like CFP is “neutral” enough to bring together stakeholders from all facets of pharmacy. “It’s about a group of people from different worlds coming together to raise funds and advance the profession,” she says. “Our collective goal is patient care.”
Although she left the pharma industry to return to clinical pharmacy practice, she still draws from her experience on both sides of the fence.ï¿½ “Given the fact there’s less and less money available to draw from, we need to find ways to become more sustainable so we can continue to support innovation in the profession,” she says.
One idea is to look at fundraising prospects among pharmacists themselves. “Individuals who have been pharmacists their whole careers may want to give back,” she says. “I want to explore ways these people can build special grants to support pharmacy innovation.”
As a native of Quebec, Maheu says another goal is to raise the profile of CFP in Quebec. “The Foundation is not well known here and I want to find ways to raise awareness of all we do,” she says. “People have to feel comfortable giving to an organization knowing they are supporting activities close to their heart.”