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June 2007 Issue

James Winkle received this painting by Wolfgan Ritschel, MD, PhD, to honor his $10 million gift to the College of Pharmacy.
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UC College of Pharmacy Renamed

Published June 2007

When James Winkle was 22, he found himself managing a small, independent pharmacy in Hamilton, Ohio. The experience led him to owning and operating his own pharmacy, and then to a successful career in investment planning.


The foundation for his success, says Winkle, was UC’s College of Pharmacy.


A 1958 graduate of the college, Winkle expressed his appreciation for the education he received at UC by pledging $10 million to the college from his estate or trust.  


Although Winkle made the donation in June 2005, at his request he was not publicly acknowledged for his support until now.


On June 6, 2007, the College of Pharmacy officially changed its name to the James L. Winkle College of Pharmacy in his honor.


“Jim’s commitment is the largest ever given to the college, and it truly reflects his unselfish generosity and impressive belief in pharmacy education at UC,” says Daniel Acosta, PhD, College of Pharmacy dean.


“The Winkle College of Pharmacy is a perfect example of how the UC Foundation helps grateful alumni and friends of UC fulfill their dreams,” says Mary Sue Cheeseman, associate senior vice president for development and alumni affairs.


A modest man who still lives in the Hamilton house he grew up in, Winkle didn’t expect public recognition—he simply wanted to give back to the college.


“I think you reward those who have helped you, and this is my way of saying thank you to the College of Pharmacy,” says Winkle.


Winkle’s interest in pharmacy began when he was 15. He got a job in a local pharmacy and was exposed to the profession by a coworker who was a pharmacy student at UC.


“I worked mostly behind the soda fountain,” laughs Winkle. “But pharmacy seemed like a good career, so that’s what I pursued.”


After graduating, Winkle worked at a Hamilton pharmacy, and when the owner died, he found himself handling day-to-day operations. He ran the pharmacy for several years before opening his own store—Winkle Discount Drug.


After seven years, Winkle sold his store to a chain pharmacy to pursue a career in investing.


“The idea of becoming an investment adviser was very appealing,” says Winkle, who has been in the field now more than 40 years.


Winkle says the pharmacy business taught him how to make decisions and correct them when necessary.


“I think being a businessman in pharmacy translated to being a good investment businessman—you have to learn to evaluate information and make decisions based on your investigation.”


Winkle says that without his pharmacy degree, he is unsure what career he would have pursued and is grateful for the direction it took him.


“The old saying that you should find something you like to do, and you’ll never work a day in your life—well, that’s certainly true in pharmacy.”


Winkle says he hopes his gift can help fund scholarships, attract quality faculty and support research.


“Jim’s gift to the College of Pharmacy means the difference between being a good college or a great college, because it allows us to increase our commitment to students, faculty development and program excellence,” says Acosta.

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