Associate Professor Dr. Fierke Publishes Book on Leadership

April 22, 2024
Erin Wilson

Leadership Legacy book cover next to Kerry Fierke portrait

The College of Pharmacy’s Dr. Kerry Fierke recently published Leadership Legacy: Discover, Create, Live Your Best Life! The book is her roadmap to finding a leadership legacy, which she defines as “the enduring and significant results of our most meaningful endeavors.” 

She speaks to readers through her own experiences but also the anecdotes and wisdom she gleaned from people across the world whom she believes have successfully left a leadership legacy, particularly in the field of pharmacy. Amongst those influential people are Dean Emeritus Dr. Marilyn Speedie, Professor Emeritus and former MPhA President Dr. Randall Seifert, APhA Past-President Dr. Lowell Anderson, and Dr. Norrie Thomas, former adjunct faculty member and managed care pioneer.

“I like to turn stories into leadership lessons, because we all have them… We all experience triumphs and we all experience setbacks. I like to take the experiences and ground them in leadership theories,” Dr. Fierke said. “It's grounded in ways that we can improve upon ourselves to become stronger, keep going forward and share our stories with each other.”

When she finished writing Leadership Legacy, she sent the book to 15 colleagues working in health care across the country for testimonials. It was the most nervous she’s felt about sharing her work, despite having presented to massive crowds and taught dozens of classes. When one of them responded that the first few chapters made him tear up so much he had to set it aside, she got the sense that offering this framework could have a real impact, even on people she won’t meet. 

“Somebody one day could pick it up and just go… ‘Oh, I'm not alone, I can do this. I can start today and I can find my purpose,’” she said. “When I was starting early on on this pathway, I wanted something that… could really capture the way I teach and how I interact in the world. I was able to incorporate both my scholarship and experiences and really synthesize it together.”

When she entered the world of health care as someone who didn’t come from a professional background in it, she saw the ways she could positively influence it.

“I don’t take care of patients directly, I take care of people who take care of patients,” she said. “I tell my students…you better know your values and be able to respect someone else’s values so that you can help give them the best care ever.” 

She hopes the book will help readers discover their personal definition of a leader and identify the ways they already have the traits of one. 

“I 100% believe that we are all leaders. I think there are people who do nothing about it… people who impact others in ways that are not healthy, but I believe everybody has leadership potential and when you know the power you have, you can use it for good.”

The book is now available for pre-order through all major booksellers, including BookBabyBarnes & Noble, and Amazon.

Categories: Announcements


Media Contacts

Dawn Tucker
College of Pharmacy
Eileen Omizo-Whittenberg
College of Pharmacy