Thumbs down to Cedar Pharmacy for its shameful business practices while working in concert with another embarrassment, Dr. Jose Luis Flores. Perhaps the $1 million it cost the pharmacy to settle the claims will persuade the owners to keep a little closer watch on the books. The settlement claims that Cedar failed to properly record hundreds of prescription drug transactions, maintain complete and accurate records and follow prescription issuance guidelines. Golly, what’s a company to do when some guy paying in cash plunks down 34 prescriptions and shows 30 drivers licenses as authentication? There was also a drug offender on probation who was found to have about, oh, $9,000 in cash (you don’t?) and almost three dozen prescription receipts with different patient names and addresses. All the receipts were from Cedar Pharmacy. The prescriptions, mainly for oxycodone, were written by Dr. Feelgood, oops, Flores, who lost his medical license.
Thumbs up to the winners of the Valley Business Awards presented this week by the Fresno Chamber of Commerce. Ray Steele Jr., former president and publisher of The Bee, won the annual Leon S. Peters Award. It’s given to a local businessperson for success in business, leadership and community service. The chamber also recognized outstanding entrepreneurs. Clothier Patrick James was named the Zinkin Entrepreneur of the Year; eatery Deli Delicious, the Rising Star Entrepreneur of the Year; Quentin Sanford, of Broadway Motion Design, the College Entrepreneur of the Year; and Kelsey Hershey, of Poppy’s Jam, the High School Entrepreneur of the Year.
Thumbs up to Armen D. Bacon, whose Bee column titled “My 10-year tour of Griefland” has been selected for a trio of film documentaries dealing with grief, breast cancer and anorexia. Three stories (including Bacon’s) will be filmed in black and white, using multiple voices for narration. The film is set for release in late 2015. The effort is being produced by On the Ball Films, founded by Georgia Ball, based in Yorkshire, U.K.
Thumbs up to Fresno State, as its Henry Madden Library has been ranked No. 25 in a listing of the Top 50 college and university libraries in the nation. The rating was issued by College Rank, a ranking service for colleges and universities. Helping the facility score its high points were its 1.13 million volumes in a 370,000 square foot space. It ranked higher than libraries at the University of Southern California, Princeton, Johns Hopkins and Yale universities. The library is clearly appreciated in Fresno, according to Dr. Peter MacDonald, dean of Library Services. Students, staff and faculty vote with their feet. Last week, the 1 millionth person already passed through its doors during this academic year alone.
Thumbs up to Manuel Hernandez for his tenacious work on behalf of the Highway City Community Science Center, which will reopen this spring. Hernandez was a pivotal part of a superb parks team that never gave up on science for kids. Generous donors also have stepped forward to make the science center thrive, including the California Tinkering After School Program, Community Science Workshop Network, San Joaquin River Conservancy and Pacific Gas and Electric Co. What good collaboration.
Thumbs up to the 19 local schools honored for their exemplary character education programs Friday at the 31st annual Conference on Character and Civic Education. Valley middle schools honored by the conference sponsor, Fresno State, were Abraham Lincoln of Selma; John F. Kennedy Jr. of Hanford; Sutter of Fowler; Washington Academic of Sanger and Mulcahy of Tulare. Fresno Unified School District middle schools honored were Kings Canyon, Scandinavian, Sequoia, Tehipite and Wawona. Central Unified schools: El Capitan, Glacier Point and Rio Vista. Valley high schools honored were: Central, Fowler, Sanger, Tulare Union, Academy for Civic and Entrepreneurial Leadership of Fresno and University High of Fresno.