Posted by William Nunnelley on 2008-08-27

Veteran Samford University faculty member Charles D. Sands III has been named interim dean of the McWhorter School of Pharmacy. The appointment is effective immediately, according to J. Bradley Creed, Samford's provost and executive vice president.

"Dr. Sands and the pharmacy school leadership team will continue to provide excellent leadership for the school," Creed said. "We will work with that leadership team and the faculty to develop a strategy for continuing to move us forward."

Creed added that no timetable had been set for a search process to hire a permanent dean.

Sands replaces Bobby G. Bryant, who had served as dean since 2006.

Sands has been associate professor of pharmacy practice since 1997. He also is department chair in pharmacy practice. He has been honored as a health care hero by the Birmingham Business Journal, and he has been a leader in improving health care services for residents of Alabama's historic Black Belt region. The pharmacy school recently won a national Crystal APPLE Award by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) for achieving excellence in an academic practice partnership with the Perry County Health Department and Health Care System.

A former Baptist missionary in Asia for about 28 years, Sands has undergraduate and doctor of pharmacy degrees from the University of Florida. During his missionary furloughs, Sands often taught at Samford. Creed noted that Sands continues his strong missions commitment through his work in rural Alabama and periodic trips back to Asia.

The McWhorter School of Pharmacy, with 41 full-time faculty members and about 550 students, is one of two accredited schools of pharmacy in Alabama. Samford's pharmacy program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education. Established in 1927, the program now offers the doctor of pharmacy degree.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.