Elaine M. Cozzarin, one of the sweetest souls to work in the field of Hospital Pharmacy and lifelong advocate of UB Pharmacy students departed from this Earth on February 1st, 2022.
Born July 11, 1945, Elaine was uniquely talented in the sciences from a young age. She emerged from Clarence High School as Co-Valedictorian, and chose to attend the University of Buffalo in 1963.
By the end of 1966, Elaine was married and had delivered her first child Michael. Now, as Elaine Kwitowski, she remained in the School of Pharmacy, earning her Bachelors of Science with Honors from the UB School of Pharmacy in 1969. Among her many honors, Elaine was selected to the Cap and Gown Society, was an Officer of the Student Union Board, and was a recipient of the A. B. Lemon Memorial Award. Later, for our Alumni Associations, Elaine served as Past President for multiple years, served on the Executive Board of the Pharmacy Alumni Board, and held officer positions also in the UB Alumni Association.
Now, juggling her roles as a wife, a Mom, and the Administrative Manager of her husband's hectic HVAC Contracting company, Elaine delivered her second child Linda in February, 1970. In April, just two months later, she became a Licensed and Registered Pharmacist for the first time and began also working full time in retail Pharmacies.
Elaine's early experiences with mentoring UB Pharmacy students began in the 1980's. By then, Elaine had become an active member of the UB Alumni Association, specifically joining both the Dean's Advisory Committee as a member of the UB School of Pharmacy Alumni Board and the UB Women's Pharmacy Alumni. Beyond supporting these organizations, Elaine actively mentored many Pharmacy students, allowing her to share her love of learning and sharing knowledge. During a critical year, when one of the non-resident UB Pharmacy students may not have been able to stay in the USA otherwise, Elaine and her family welcomed her to live with them in their family home so that she could complete her studies. Young Wai remained "like a daughter" to Elaine, and is still considered part of the family today.
Elaine's hospital pharmacy and consulting positions over three decades allowed her to expose students to a broad scope of responsibilities. While at St Mary's Hospital in Lewiston NY, Children's Hospital in Buffalo NY, Kenmore Mercy Hospital in Kenmore NY, Staff Pharmacist to several Skilled Nursing Facilities, and later as the Director of Pharmacy at Lakeside Memorial Hospital in Brockport NY, Elaine touched the lives of countless students and young pharmacists, helping them thrive in their careers. By then, Elaine had become a Fellow with the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists and Core Faculty with the UB Geriatric Education Center. Elaine also LOVED the honor of judging the Annual Science Congress Competition for the Buffalo Museum of Science.
In recognition of her passion for sharing her knowledge, expertise, and quest for excellence, Elaine received the Preceptor of the Year Award in 1990.
The value that preceptors provide young students entering the field of Pharmacy is incalculable. With every year that passes, the demands on all working professionals makes it difficult to find the time to mentor new graduates. Elaine Cozzarin inspired with her passion for the profession, as she guided students for so many years, while herself working full time, advancing in her own career, and continuing in her own education throughout. And while raising her loving family as a single Mother during a time when single Mothers weren't well supported, she remained faithful to advancing the knowledge of many who later thrived in their careers.
NOTES FROM ELAINE'S COLLEAGUES
Retired Former Co-worker from Hospital Pharmacy
Elaine and I were friends for nearly 30 years. We both started at Lakeside Hospital within days of each other. She had extensive Hospital Pharmacy experience going in, and I had been in Retail Pharmacy for 21 years. I learned so very much from her. We had similar life experiences over which we commiserated -- children, ex-husbands, being women in a predominately male profession -- the usual. Elaine was amazing in the amount of knowledge she had stored in her head. I knew where to look up information about how drugs worked, or about interactions, or about actions in specific organs of the body. Elaine never had to hesitate; she just knew that information and was comfortable discussing it with anyone, be they doctors, nurses, administrators, or patients. I was in awe of her ability and knowledge. I know she worked hard for all that knowledge. She was proud of the fact that she had attained her Fellowship in Pharmacy. They are not easy to complete and require continual research to maintain. Very few pharmacists ever achieve what Elaine had.
The other area that was of utmost importance to Elaine was her family. She relished time with her grandchildren and always hoped for more time with her extended family.
Elaine was a good friend and I miss her.
Former Student & Now Practicing Hospital Pharmacist
l met Elaine when l was an intern pharmacist at Kenmore Mercy Hospital in 1989. UB pharmacy school is a very demanding program, l barely managed to graduate, yet Elaine was married with children while attending pharmacy school! That is AMAZING!!
l learned a great deal from Elaine for her knowledge, her wisdom and her dedication to the profession. Elaine truly loved her work, though it was not always charming. She told me she was happier spending time with the patients and nurses when she was the SNF consultant pharmacist at KMH. Needless to say, Elaine was well respected and loved there!
l miss Elaine's soft soothing voice. When l was with her as a student, we shared a lot of conservations. She once told me this amazing story: The sky is covered by million of stars; People would be excited to capture a glimpse of a shooting star. Quite often the little dim ones go on unnoticed even though they are there ALL THE TIME! In reality, we often wish for our shooting star: a successful career, an unforgettable love affair, a Swiss bank account or whatever. Of course we must work hard to achieve our goal, but we sometimes forget our family and friends who are there for us, just like the little stars in the sky.
Thank you Elaine for being my mentor, my friend and my family! You hold a special place in my heart always!
Elaine M. Cozzarin
Dearly Loved.....Dearly Missed