Meet Your Host


Conference Host

Mike Johnston, CPhT, is the Founder, Chairman & CEO of the National Pharmacy Technician Association (NPTA). Under Mike’s strategic vision and leadership, NPTA has become the world’s largest professional membership organization for pharmacy technicians, with over 90,000 members in the United States and from around the world. Mike is the author of nine best-selling pharmacy technician textbooks and training manuals. In addition, Mike serves as the only voting pharmacy technician member of the United States Pharmacopeia (USP). Mike’s mission is to serve as a respected and trusted advocate for pharmacy technicians and to work towards the elimination of preventable medication errors. He holds a B.S. with honors in Business Management and Ethics from Dallas Christian College.

Meet The Speakers

Wallace Cross, RPh, MHS, CADC

Addiction 101
Wallace Cross worked as a pharmacy manager for 18 years. He received his pharmacy degree at the University of Illinois College of Pharmacy and holds a Master of Health Science degree specific to Addiction Sciences. He has published numerous articles on the topic of addiction in health professionals and has spoken both nationally and internationally on the topic of addiction. He is a faculty member at the University of Illinois College of Pharmacy and Chicago State University College of Pharmacy where he conducts classes and lectures on the topic of addiction.

Adriana Carrasco, CPhT

Professionalism for Pharmacy Technicians
Adriana has been a Pharmacy Technician for 12 years. She has worked in retail, home infusion and as a program director for a pharmacy technician program. In her most recent role as a Pharmacy Operations Supervisor, she enjoys developing other pharmacy technicians and process improvement for better quality outcome and safety for patients.

Sarah David, Ph.D, M.E.d., BA, Executive Coach Certification

Optimizing LinkedIn to Advance Your Career
Dr. Sarah David is an educator, entrepreneur, and inclusive leadership and marketing strategist. She is the Founder of NICE – National Institute for Career Empowerment™, a global coaching, professional development training company specializing in business, career, leadership and soft skills development, diversity and inclusion, and women’s empowerment. She empowers business owners, entrepreneurs, and professionals to build their brands for advancement, transition, or reinvention. Dr. David was named by Forbes as a Top Career Resource and is the author of “Jump Start Your Career Now!” For over 20 years she has inspired high achieving professionals looking to monetize their degrees, education, and experience by building their authority through personal and professional development and leveraging platforms such as LinkedIn and other online personal branding tools. Connect with her at, subject line #CPhTLive.

Amanda DeMarzo, PharmD, MBA, PACS

Advanced Opportunities for Pharmacy Technicians in Billing/Insurance
Amanda DeMarzo, PharmD, MBA, PACS, is the Director of Customer Success and Clinical Pharmacy at RxLightning, a health technology company based in New Albany, IN. She focuses on how to improve the current health care system as a whole through improved training, patient focused performance, and advanced technology for better patient outcomes. Amanda developed a passion for patient-centered care and shared decision making during patient-facing roles over the last decade. Amanda started her healthcare career as a front-end staff member of an independent pharmacy where she then moved into a pharmacy technician role. Over the years, her experience as a pharmacy technician led to additional opportunities in various pharmacy settings. She is now a Doctor of Pharmacy focused on patient access, reimbursement, and managed care.

Ally Dering-Anderson, PharmD

POC Testing & the Value of Pharmacy Technicians
Dr. Ally Dering-Anderson, BA, PharmD, RP, FAPhA, is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice & Science at the University of Nebraska College of Pharmacy. She coordinates and teaches the Law & Ethics Classes, the OTC & Self Care Products Course, the Point-of-Care Testing Course, and the Immunization Course. She is also the preceptor for a Public Policy experiential rotation for senior level pharmacy students. A pharmacist immunization advocate, Ally has given more than 50,000 immunizations during her career. Ally was the 2021 Teacher of the Year for the University of Nebraska Medical Center campus and was named a Fellow in APhA in 2017. Ally served as the 2019 President of the Nebraska Pharmacists Association. Ally is a graduate of Doane College in Crete, Nebraska and the University of Nebraska College of Pharmacy. She has been a licensed and practicing pharmacist in Nebraska and Iowa for over 30 years. She served as the Assistant Executive Director of the Nebraska Pharmacists Association for 13 years and worked the “vampire shift” for Walgreens. Ally has spoken nationally and internationally on pharmacy topics.

Jerrica Dodd, PharmD, MS

Setting Yourself Apart Professionally
Dr Jerrica Dodd is a champion of pharmacists and technicians to build a life and career of which they dream. One of her quotes is “don’t tell me what’s not possible!” and she encourages her clients to build their dreams while believing that it’s possible. Dr Dodd is also a champion of people sharing themselves by sharing their story and aims to help clients reach their fullest potential. You will be inspired to take action by listening to Dr Dodd share her story.

Jennifer L. Evans, PharmD, BCACP, CTTS

Expanding the Role of Technicians in Disease Management

With a passion for pharmacy education, Dr. Jennifer L. Evans develops grant funded continuing education programs for AMCP (Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy). Dr. Evans holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in Mathematics from the University of Delaware, Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Maryland, and completed her ambulatory care focused residency training at Kaiser Permanente, Hawaii. Dr. Evans has worked in the federal and private sectors developing the clinical pharmacy technician role.

Lisa Faast, PharmD

Understanding the Business of Pharmacy
Dr. Lisa Faast is an innovator, experienced business executive, and leader in the independent pharmacy industry. With over 20 years of experience as a pharmacy owner, consultant, compounder, and businesswoman, she is able to bring a unique perspective to the industry’s problems. Her passion is helping independent pharmacy owners thrive by focusing on diversifying and then growing revenue streams. She is currently CEO at DiversifyRx, a consulting and education company, in addition to being a wife and mom of 4.

Heather Ferguson, PharmD, MS, BCPS

A Pharmacy Technician’s Role & Opportunities in Drug Diversion Prevention
Heather is a pharmacist by training and currently manages the Drug Diversion Prevention Program for UW Medicine in Seattle, Washington. Prior to being a Drug Diversion Prevention Specialist, she had the opportunity to work in the inpatient, outpatient, and ambulatory care settings in pharmacy. She also served as a Medication Safety Officer for two different organizations. All of the experiences have helped her gain a deeper perspective of the risks and challenges associated with drug diversion prevention.

Mark Garofoli, PharmD, MBA, BCGP, CPE, CTTS

Dispensing Opioids Safely & Compassionately
Dr. Mark Garofoli is a 2004 graduate from the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy and a 2008 graduate of the Strayer University MBA program. He is board certified in Geriatric Care (BGCP) along with having APhA certificate training in Immunizations and Medication Therapy Management (MTM). He began his career with CVS Health for a decade of being a community pharmacist and “climbing the corporate ladder”. Eventually he made the decision to switch gears and focus more on clinical aspects by joining Humana Healthcare to perform medication therapy management, or MTM, for 6 years. In 2015, he accepted a position with the West Virginia University (WVU) School of Pharmacy to develop an MTM program focusing on pain management, which then evolved into a managed care program performing reviews of patient’s pain management treatment plans. Dr. Garofoli was also the coordinator of the West Virginia Expert Pain Management Panel, which developed the West Virginia Safe & Effective Management of Pain (SEMP) Guidelines (www.sempguidelinesorg). He is currently a Clinical Assistant Professor and Director of Experiential Learning for the WVU School of Pharmacy, along with being a Clinical Pain Management Pharmacist at the WVU Medicine Center for Integrative Pain Management. Mark has been a consultant in the field of pain management on many different avenues such as being a grant reviewer for the CDC, an expert witness in multiple criminal and civil court cases, numerous interviews and articles locally and nationally, and a recipient of the West Virginia GenerationRx Award. Dr. Garofoli is also a certified pain educator (CPE) and certified tobacco treatment specialist (CTTS), while enjoying developing and conducting presentations across the country revolving around pain management, substance- use disorder (addiction), drug diversion, and illicit substances.

HeatherLyn Gray, MPH, CHEC, SCCEM, CPhT

Disaster Preparedness & Tech’s Role in Emergency Management
Before joining Prisma Health as an Emergency Management Coordinator, HeatherLyn Gray worked as a Certified Pharmacy Technician for over a decade in both hospital and community settings. Ms. Gray earned a Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration with a concentration in Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management from the University of Hawaii and a Master of Public Health with a concentration in Biosecurity and Disaster Preparedness from Saint Louis University. Much of her research has focused on preparing for infectious disease outbreaks, healthcare emergency management, and pharmacy disaster readiness. She continues to work toward bridging the fields of healthcare, public health, and emergency management with a special interest in the role of pharmacy as an integral component of comprehensive disaster preparedness.

Lekisha Griffin, PharmD, RPh

Providing Excellent Patient Care
Dr. Griffin has been in the pharmacy profession since 1998. She was a PTCB CPhT from 2001-2007. Dr. Griffin has a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from Cornell University and a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D) degree from the University at Buffalo School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences. She has been a registered pharmacist in the state of New York since August 2006. Currently she is the Director & Lead Instructor of the Pharmacy Technician Education and Training Program at the Rochester Educational Opportunity Center, a vocational school in Rochester, NY which is affiliated with The College at Brockport.

Rachel Hawkins, CPhT-Adv, AAS, BA

Navigating Pharmacy Workflows During COVID-19
Rachel Hawkins has been a certified pharmacy technician since 2005. Her expertise ranges from sterile compounding to unit dose preparations for neonatal to geriatric populations in the acute care setting. In her current role, she utilizes data collected to optimize inventory, medication distribution and pharmacy workflows. Along with training new pharmacy employees, she is the main preceptor for pharmacy technician students completing their clinical rotations at Moses Cone Hospital, and is also an adjunct instructor for the pharmacy technician professional program with Penn Foster. Rachel recently was appointed as a member of ASHP’s Professional and Career Ladder Development Advisory Group in 2021.

Michelle Hill, MPH, CPhT

A Strategic Approach to Personal and Professional Development for Pharmacy Technicians
Michelle Hill has worked in the pharmaceutical industry since 2002 and has experience in retail, hospital, and long-term care pharmacies. In 2010 Michelle used her experience in allied health to transition into higher education and has served traditional, non-traditional, and dual enrollments students as an instructor, student advisor, and program director. Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Herzing University and went on to complete her Master of Public Health with a concentration in Health Informatics from Augusta University. Michelle believes in community connections and she endeavors to be a part of healthy solutions that improve community wellbeing.

Emily Holcomb, PharmD, BCPS

Targeted Medication Safety Best Practices
Emily Holcomb is the 2021-2022 Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) 2021-2022 Safe Medication Management Fellow. She is a pharmacist in the United States Army and has worked in a variety of practice settings in Texas, Kansas, Hawaii and now in Pennsylvania. She has completed an ASHP PGY-1 Pharmacy Practice Residency and is a Board Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist (BCPS).

Whitney Jo Hummel, CPhT-Adv, CSPT, RYT

Opportunities in Medication History, Reconciliation & Adherence
Whitney has earned her Advanced Pharmacy Technician Certification (CPhT-Adv) and Compound Sterile Preparation Technician (CSPT) with PTCB. She also completed a practical nursing program, as well as earned her yoga instructor certification. One of her highest concerns regarding her job is collecting patient information precisely. The objective of her lecture is to present the options pharmacy technicians use for medication reconciliation & adherence, as well as how to perform them quickly and accurately.

Corey Jahnke, BS Pharmacy

Reducing Workplace Stress & Avoiding Job Burnout
From an early age, Corey knew he wanted to build a better financial future for himself. He worked long hours at a factory to put myself through college and eventually finished pharmacy school with top honors.His career thus far has been lucrative and exciting, but getting back to his roots and helping everyday people find financial and emotional freedom is the real dream come true.

Cory Jenks, PharmD, BCPS, BCACP

Healthcare Unscripted
Cory is an ambulatory care pharmacist and improv comedian from Tucson, AZ. Since 2013 Cory has coached, taught, and performed improv for thousands of people. Today, Cory travels the country teaching other healthcare professionals how to apply the valuable skills of improv comedy to create a more adaptable, empathetic, and humanizing healthcare experience.

Melissa Pein, CPhT-Adv, CSPT

Vaccines & the Pharmacy Technician

Melissa has worked in the inpatient pharmacy field for more than 20 years, more than half of which served in a leadership position. In 2021, she achieved Advanced Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv) designation by completing certifications in sterile compounding, immunization administration, hazardous drug management, and technician product verification. Melissa has worked as the Vaccines For Children (VFC) Coordinator for her organization for three years and is responsible for the regulation and monitoring of immunizations, including the COVID vaccine. Melissa is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Administration and Management with a specialization in Emergency Management.

Josh Potter

Understanding Pharmacy Compliance
Josh has worked in Pharmacy since 1995, first as a Technician and a Pharmacy Consultant. Since 2001, he has worked for PRS Pharmacy Services in Latrobe, PA, helping independent Pharmacies through various aspects of Pharmacy Ownership. He has worked with over 10,000 Pharmacies across the country to ensure compliance with HIPAA, DMEPOS Accreditation, and other critical areas related to Pharmacy Compliance. Josh has also provided articles and CEs for various publications and Pharmacy Organizations.

Amy Summers, PharmD, BCSCP

Proposed Changes to USP 795 & 797

Amy Summers, PharmD, BCSCP is an independent consultant, specializing in business, operations, quality assurance, and regulatory compliance matters for the compounding pharmacy and pharmaceutical manufacturing industries. She earned her PharmD degree from the University of California San Francisco and was among the first pharmacists in the nation to earn a Board Certified Sterile Compounding Pharmacist (BCSCP) credential. Dr. Summers has spent her entire career as a pharmacist in various settings centered around non-sterile and sterile compounding as well as pharmaceutical manufacturing. She has formerly served as Director of Operations and Pharmacist in Charge at a handful of organizations engaged in compounding and also as Managing Director of a FDA-registered 503B outsourcing facility. With extensive experience in USP 797, USP 795, USP 800, PCAB accreditation, state Board of Pharmacy and FDA compliance and inspections, cGMP, and 21 CFR 211, Dr. Summers also serves as an expert witness for all matters related to pharmacy compounding, and provides evidence review, reports and testimony.

Aimee Ruth Torre, CPhT

Leadership Development Strategies for Pharmacy Technicians
Aimee has been a practicing pharmacy technician for almost 4 years now. She has worked in retail, closed door pharmacies but has recently found her passion in managed care pharmacy. She has helped pioneer the improvement of pharmacy quality measures in institutions such as Cedar-Sinai Medical Foundation and currently in Providence Facey Medical Foundation. After 11 months of working as a clinical pharmacy technician, she got promoted to Supervisor for Clinical Pharmacy Operations overseeing clinical support staff in the different disease management programs. She prides in advancing the role of pharmacy technicians in the health care team.