Guiding Light: Whether It’s Raising Knowledge

For more than 40 years, Martin Mintz, BSP, PD, has been among the most loyal supporters of the School of Pharmacy.

Martin Mintz, BSP, PD

The 1965 graduate has been a longtime student preceptor, has served on the School’s Board of Visitors, and in 2008, he was inducted into the Dean’s Hall of Fame of Distinguished Community Pharmacists. Through his tireless campaigning, he has raised more than $1 million for the School.

Recently, Mintz, who is CEO of Baltimore’s Northern Pharmacy & Medical Equipment, and his wife, Judy, donated $50,000 to the School. The gift established The Mintz Family Scholarship Endowment to support students pursuing a career in community pharmacy. The endowment has been matched with an additional $100,000.

“I think it’s important that alumni give back to the School of Pharmacy and realize that what they have gotten is due in part to that school,” says Mintz. “It’s especially important to support scholarships.

“I was fortunate, when I went it was so inexpensive that my parents could afford it. I want students to have the same opportunity that I had,” he says.

“Marty and Judy have been unwavering advocates of the School of Pharmacy over the past 25 years,” says Dean Natalie D. Eddington, PhD. “Marty was instrumental in founding our David Stewart Associates, raising the bar for philanthropy and providing the School with a strong foundation of support that has helped to transform the University of Maryland into one of the top 10 schools of pharmacy in the nation.”

At 72, Mintz personifies the successful independent pharmacist, with a multimillion-dollar business serving customers all over the world. He built the business, which employs 130, by anticipating trends in retail pharmacy and by placing customer service at the very top of his priority list.

“It’s like any other business where there’s a lot of competition,” says Mintz. “You’ve just got to do something different and meaningful that the customer perceives as a convenience and helpful to them. You’ve got to do what that customer wants you to do.”

Mintz has instilled these values in pharmacy students as a preceptor since 1968. While supervising students working in his company, he helps train them to be business owners as well as pharmacists.

With competition from mail-order pharmacies and national chains threatening independent drugstores, Mintz emphasizes that providing exceptional service is a critical ingredient in retaining customers. “The challenge for the independent pharmacy is to do something different and look for those pockets of business that the chain drugstores don’t want to do,” he says, “whether that’s compounding, measuring and fitting braces, or giving flu shots or pneumonia shots.”

Cynthia Boyle, PharmD, FAPhA, director of the School’s Experiential Learning Program and an associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science, notes that students have remarked on the wealth of learning opportunities available at Mintz’s pharmacy. They gain valuable experience in drug compounding, providing medical supplies, and meeting the needs of long-term care facilities and their residents, she says.

The School couldn’t ask for a better role model, she says. “Dr. Mintz is a proactive pharmacist and businessperson who has found a way to grow a business and to meet patient needs. Students are seeing someone who has created the niches and business models that are both profitable and sustainable,” Boyle says.

He is also a role model for his industry colleagues, she says. “I think he has a vision for where pharmacy is going,” says Boyle, “and he’s quite willing to commit his time and resources – both to precepting and to being a really effective alumnus.