Reginald Frye, PharmD, PhD, FCCP, the new dean of the College of Pharmacy at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, had less than a week to get acquainted with Memphis before his first day at the helm of the college. Still, he believes he is settling in well to life in the Bluff City and at UTHSC.
“It’s been great,” he said. “Everybody’s been very welcoming. It is a very collegial environment and everybody’s willing to help.” A welcome reception to introduce Dr. Frye to the UTHSC community is set for today, June 8, from 2-4 p.m., in the lobby of the College of Pharmacy on the Memphis campus.
Dr. Frye said he spent his first couple of days at UTHSC meeting with administrative leadership. He also began meeting with faculty in the college and becoming acclimated to the college he will lead.
“I had never been to Memphis before I interviewed,” he said. “My wife had not been until we came for a second visit in January. But we really like it. Memphis has a rich history and culture and lots of restaurants, so we look forward to exploring the area.”
Dr. Frye and his wife, Carole, have settled on Mud Island. The couple have three daughters, Ashley, who is beginning her pediatric residency at Wake Forest University, and twins, Lindsey, a senior at North Carolina State University, and Lacey, a senior at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta.
Dr. Frye said he enjoys spending time with family and is looking forward to walks along the river.
His immediate focus, however, is getting to know the College of Pharmacy with its campuses in Memphis, Nashville, and Knoxville. “Pharmacy is really a diverse field. When most people think of a pharmacist, they think of the Walgreens or CVS pharmacist, but there are many different career pathways in pharmacy. There are also many opportunities in research. One of the things that attracted me here was the research productivity of the pharmacy faculty and the research areas that they’re working in,” said Dr. Frye, an accomplished researcher focusing on factors influencing drug response related to metabolism and pharmacogenetics.
“And then, there’s the patient care aspect of helping patients live healthier lives through the optimal use of medications,” he continued. “The clinical faculty are well known nationally as well. So, it’s a very strong group.”
During his interviews for the top position, Dr. Frye visited not only the College of Pharmacy in Memphis, but its campuses in Nashville and Knoxville. Dr. Frye is planning return visits to Knoxville later this month and Nashville shortly after.
Dr. Frye is also excited to engage with College of Pharmacy alumni, and was very impressed with alumni he met during the interview process.
Dr. Frye comes to UTHSC from the University of Florida (UF) College of Pharmacy, where he served as a professor, chair of the Department of Pharmacotherapy and Translational Research, and the associate dean for Faculty Development in the college.
Prior to Dr. Frye’s arrival, Brad Boucher, PharmD, FCCP, FNAP, MCCM, served as interim dean of the College of Pharmacy since June 2022.
Dr. Frye received his Doctor of Pharmacy Degree in 1990 from Mercer University and his PhD in clinical pharmaceutical science in 1995 at the University of Pittsburgh. He completed postgraduate training as a Clinical Pharmacokinetics Fellow at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an ASHP Fellow in Clinical Pharmacokinetics at the University of Pittsburgh.
“We are thrilled have Reggie leading our College of Pharmacy with its campuses in Memphis, Nashville, and Knoxville,” said UTHSC Chancellor Peter Buckley, MD. “The University of Tennessee Health Science Center is dedicated to training the next generation of health care professionals for Tennessee, improving access to outstanding clinical care for individuals across the state, and developing groundbreaking research to improve the lives of those who live in Tennessee. The College of Pharmacy is vital to this effort, and Reggie is the perfect choice to lead the college.”
“Thank you to Brad for his stellar leadership as interim dean,” the chancellor said. “Among the many things accomplished under Brad’s outstanding leadership, just a few months ago the College of Pharmacy received full accreditation until 2033.”
“And, please join us in welcoming Reggie and his wife, Carole, to our UTHSC community,” Chancellor Buckley said.