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ASHP Pharmacy Champion Award

The ASHP Board of Directors’ Pharmacy Champion Award recognizes leadership in advocacy and public policy that contributes to significant improvements in patient care, drug safety, medication-use outcomes, and advances the vital roles pharmacists play as patient care providers.

The award, which is conferred at the discretion of the ASHP Board of Directors, may be presented annually at the ASHP national meeting or other appropriate function. There is no limit to the number of awards that may be conferred each year.

2022 Recipients

Representative Gary Merchant, MBA, RPh
Sullivan, District 4, New Hampshire House of Representatives

Gary MerchantRepresentative Merchant is a subject matter expert on 340B-participating hospitals and the orphan drug exclusion, pharmacy supply chain, and hospital pharmacy management. He is an avid champion for advancing pharmacists’ scope of practice, expanding reimbursement for services provided by a pharmacist, and fostering medication safety and health outcomes. He played a significant role in facilitating legislation that recognizes pharmacists as providers under Medicaid and expands their ability to prescribe medications for tobacco cessation. Representative Merchant also championed legislation creating a new license category for advanced pharmacy technicians authorizing them to perform most technical dispensing functions without the review or approval of a licensed pharmacist.

Colorado Pharmacists Society led coalition involved in the passage of H.B. 21-1275, Medicaid Reimbursement for Services by Pharmacists

Colorado Pharmacists SocietyA coalition of pharmacy and healthcare professionals led by the Colorado Pharmacists Society worked closely with state legislators to secure passage of legislation that requires Medicaid to reimburse pharmacists for clinical services under the medical benefit, including those providing advanced clinical services under collaborative practice agreements or statewide protocols. This group of dedicated pharmacy and healthcare leaders executed a concerted, highly organized, and effective effort to improve patient access to primary care and add to the growing list of states expanding patient access to pharmacists’ services.

Criteria and Eligibility

ASHP members are invited, annually, to suggest nominees in writing with substantiating evidence. The award is intended to recognize an elected government official, public servant, or an organization whose involvement in public policy and advocacy supports the improvement of medication safety and health outcomes and the advancement of pharmacy practice. Support can be demonstrated either through a recent singular, significant achievement or for career-long contributions and accomplishments at the local, state, or national level. Examples include but are not limited to outstanding contributions to the visibility, value, and advancement of pharmacy practice and health policy through political and legislative activity, patient advocacy, civic leadership, and/or environmental stewardship with regard to ASHP’s strategic priorities and key advocacy issues.

Nominees may be pharmacists or non-pharmacists, regardless of practice area or ASHP membership status. Current ASHP Board members and ASHP staff are not eligible.

Nominating Instructions

Nominations are accepted year-round and are to be transmitted electronically during this period using the Award Nominations Form. Please see the Call for Award Nominations to reference the criteria for the award as well as the nomination instructions. 

Nominations received by October 1 will be reviewed by the Awards Committee, and selections will be made the following February. In some years, selections are not made for all awards.

If you have any questions about the Awards Program, please contact the Office of Member Relations at [email protected].



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