Thursday, June 17, 2021

For years, staff member Bradley Gilchrist re-applied metaphorical “band-aids” to the old College of Pharmacy building on campus, while coordinating efforts to build the newest one. This took intense amounts of sustained teamwork, leadership, and creative problem-solving with many types of people, as well as resourcefulness, reliability, and innovation.

Brad Gilchrist
Brad Gilchrist

What he accomplished—as the “go-to” person for all things building-related—was done with his distinctive positive outlook and easygoing attitude. His efforts earned him the inaugural College of Pharmacy Staff of the Year Award.

Vern Duba, an instructional services specialist and clinical assistant professor with the college, nominated Gilchrist for the award. The tasks he performed were “monumental, …thankless, ... (and ultimately) frustrating,” Duba said. That’s because just when it seemed his final oversized task was complete—coordinating the movement of people and equipment and millions of dollars of equipment—the work landscape suddenly changed again due to COVID-19.

So there was another baton for Gilchrist to pick up: needing to coordinate changes to all buildings under his care to meet requirements that would protect all who entered.

“The unfortunate occurrence of a worldwide pandemic limiting the full usage of Brad’s new building is indescribably heartbreaking,” Duba said. “Through all of this, he has remained cheerful, optimistic, and dedicated. He has been the strong clear voice for absolutely every unit and every person in both buildings of the College of Pharmacy.”

Gilchrist was “the fulcrum for multiple simultaneous processes”, noted Jay Currie, clinical professor and chair of the Pharmacy Practice and Science Department. However, “as stressful as it was for him…Brad maintained his even and amiable demeanor (and) treated everyone with respect and with patience...He at all times worked to be a collaborator and to work to achieve the best possible outcome to meet the need at hand.”

“Amazingly, Brad displayed such extraordinary performance in a job that needed to be learned anew each and every day,” Currie added.

Gilchrist’s supervisor, Executive Associate Dean Gary Milavetz, described him as “unflappable”.

“As building coordinator, he was the primary contact person for collegiate needs, facilities management, and the construction teams. From managing the coordination of the Quadrangle Residence Hall demolition to the new facility construction, the building move-in scheduling and planning, and ongoing UI Pharmaceuticals transitions and FDA qualification needs, Brad has not missed a beat in his ever-changing role,” Milavetz said.

Gilchrist previously worked for the Iowa Drug Information Service Department (IDIS). He has been a college and university employee for more than 30 years and holds a pharmacy degree from the college.

The new UI College of Pharmacy building opened for the first semester of 2020. Its official dedication ceremony will be held on October 15. 2021.