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By George Lewis

Photo of Thomas Foster with grandson
Thomas Foster, with his grandson, at the award presentation

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Thomas S. Foster said he was "awestruck" upon learning he was to receive the Lyons Award for Outstanding Service.

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April 17, 2002 (Lexington, Ky.) -- Thomas S. Foster, professor of pharmacy and anesthesiology in the University of Kentucky colleges of Pharmacy and Medicine at the UK Chandler Medical Center has received the William E. Lyons Award for Outstanding Service. The award is given jointly each year by the Martin School of Public Policy and Administration and the Department of Political Science to persons providing service to the campus, community and state.

Sporting his trademark bowtie, Dr. Foster said he was "awestruck" upon learning he was to receive the award.

But his selection came as no surprise to Karen Blumenschein, associate professor in the College of Pharmacy, who, in a three-page letter of nomination, detailed Dr. Foster's contribution to the University and the community. Among them:

* He has served for 15 years as chairperson of the Medical Institutional Review Board (IRB), during which time the board developed "an envious reputation of being one of the premier IRB program in the nation," wrote Blumenschein.

* He helped establish a Quality Improvement Program to improve the University's overall conduct of research with humans.

* His zeal for music and athletics has led to advancements of concert band music and youth soccer in Lexington.

* For more than 20 years, he has been a leader in promoting the safe and effective use of drug therapy throughout the state. Under his direction of the Drug Formulary Council, Kentucky became the first state to have a therapeutic equivalence drug formulary, which defines groups of drug produces for which pharmacists should exercise caution when considering the dispensing of approved generic products.

Those attending the April 11 ceremony in the John Jacob Niles Center for American Music heard remarks from Ed Jennings, professor of public administration and political science, and Brad Canon, professor of political science. Canon lauded the award's namesake, William E. Lyons, former director of the Martin School who is credited with creating Fayette County's city-county government. He called Lyons "the James Madison of Lexington."

In his remarks introducing this year's recipient, Jennings said Dr. Foster "reflects the spirit of public service" that Lyons personified.

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