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Local pharmacist nominated to state board

Owner and Head Pharmacist of Eastern States Compounding Pharmacy in Littleton, David Rochefort, was nominated by Gov. Sununu to the NH Board of Pharmacy last week. (Courtesy Photo) (click for larger version)
March 16, 2017
LITTLETON—Owner and Head Pharmacist of Eastern States Compounding Pharmacy in Littleton, David Rochefort, was nominated by Gov. Sununu to the New Hampshire Board of Pharmacy last week.

If confirmed, Rochefort will succeed Michael D. Bullek, of Plymouth.

Originally from Lancaster, Rochefort has been a resident of Littleton for the past 15 years. His compounding pharmacy in Littleton is the first in northern New England to receive accreditation by the Pharmacy Compounding Accreditation Board.

Growing up, Rochefort's father was a pharmacist and their family owned the Sullivan Drug Store in Lancaster. He says that the experience gave him an intimate awareness of all aspects of running a pharmacy and being a community provider.

Rochefort learned much from observing his father running the family pharmacy, seeing him answering the call of customers on many nights and weekends who had forgotten to fill a prescription or needing questions answered about their medicine.

The experience left him with an awareness that being a pharmacist involves much more than having a degree—it is being a trusted member of the medical community, adviser, and sometimes, just being supportive.

During his early career, Rochefort gained experience working for chain pharmacies, where he learned the pros and cons of different systems and large scale efficiencies.

When he and his wife, Heather, moved back to northern New Hampshire, he purchased the family drug store in Lancaster. Rochefort says ownership of the store expanded his perspective and grew his understanding of the complexities of pharmacy regulations and standards.

Rochefort sold the family pharmacy in 2005 and opened the state's first specialty pharmacy, focusing on the practice of pharmaceutical compounding. With his knowledge of drugs, pharmacology and clinical therapeutics, he works closely with physicians to deliver medications to patients that haven't responded to commercially available therapies.

He says this aspect of his career has been the most rewarding, as well as the most complex.

The role as a compounding pharmacist and business owner has also expanded his understanding of state and federal rules and laws, business management and human resources.

Through his church, Rochefort has traveled with medical mission teams working with the indigenous Mayan people of southern Mexico.

Rochefort has been thinking about serving on the state's Board of Pharmacy for long time.

Back in college, he had the opportunity to attend a board meeting with his preceptor, who was a board member. Over the years since, he has considered what the insight his background has provided could bring to the position.

"The North Country has been underrepresented. It's much different getting pharmaceutical care up here than in Manchester or Portsmouth, for instance. The challenges people face up here are very different," said Rochefort.

Rochefort says his primary objective as a board member would be the safe delivery of pharmaceutical care to the people of New Hampshire. He believes that his experience as an employee pharmacist, pharmacy owner and family man has prepared him for the challenge and would contribute to his being a robust and active board member.

Rochefort said, "I have reached a point in my career where I have the time, energy, and determination to work at this position with enthusiasm—I believe New Hampshire needs this type of commitment and I'm ready to serve."

Rochefort's nomination is greatly supported by local legislators, Rep. Brad Bailey and Rep. Erin Hennessey, both of whom wrote letters of endorsement to the governor, as well as by Executive Councilor Joe Kenney.

In a statement to the Courier, Councilor Kenney said ""I enthusiastically support David Rochefort's nomination to the NH Board of Pharmacy.  David expressed strong interest last year in his desire to serve on the board and has been eager to serve the State of New Hampshire.   He is a second generation pharmacist with nearly 20 years of experience in working at a chain pharmacy, owning his own family pharmacy and now owning a specialty pharmacy business.  He understands the state and federal rules and laws, business management, and human resources.  Growing up in the North Country, he would make a great addition to the New Hampshire Board of Pharmacy."

Rochefort is excited and hopeful that his nomination will be approved by the Executive Council. They will vote on the governor's nominations on March 22.

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