Scholarship Honors the Past and Future of Fisher Pharmacy

July 5, 2022

The Willis Wesley Griffis, Jr. Emergency Fund was recently created to help students in the Wegmans School of Pharmacy who face a family hardship or emergency situation. The gift was designed to help students travel to and from the University so that they may visit a loved one during a difficult time.

The fund is named in memory of Willis Wesley Griffis, Jr. Born in 1891 in Midland, Ontario, Canada, Griffis graduated from Northwestern University in 1913 with a degree in pharmacy and enlisted in the United States Army during World War I. Shortly after his marriage in 1921, Griffis and his new wife opened Griffis Pharmacy in Lake Forest, Illinois.

The store, located in the historic Market Square shopping center, was a hub of activity for the town. The pharmacy also served as a place where locals would gather for a drink at the soda fountain and businessmen could order a hot lunch.  

Griffis owned and operated the pharmacy for the next several decades before his passing in 1974.

“As one of the most trusted and accessible health professionals, pharmacists serve as critical resources for health information in their communities,” says Dr. Christine Birnie, dean of the Wegmans School of Pharmacy. “The Wegmans School of Pharmacy is committed to preparing the next generation of patient centered pharmacists, many of whom will serve their own communities as Willis Wesley Griffis, Jr. did in Lake Forest, Illinois.”