School of Pharmacy News & Media Center
The University of Mississippi

The Browns father-son duo image

Celebrating Black History Month

Spotlight on father-son pharmacy duo Billy and Isaiah Brown

Billy Brown, Pharm.D. 1998

Current position:

Clinical pharmacy practitioner at the G.V. (Sonny) Montgomery VA Medical Center in Jackson and adjunct faculty and preceptor for the UM School of Pharmacy. In this role, I have the privilege of caring for veterans by managing disease states such as HIV, diabetes, hypertension and hyperlipidemia.

How well do you feel the UM School of Pharmacy prepared you for your career?

The SOP helped me develop fundamental knowledge and skills that have allowed me to experience a wonderful career.

What’s it like to see your son follow in your footsteps by attending the SOP?

I purposefully never tried to choose Isaiah’s career path, but always tried to guide his decisions. His early interest was law so I was surprised to see the change to pharmacy. I honestly do not have the words to express my feelings about Isaiah becoming a member of the profession. I have experienced so many emotions over the years watching him develop as a young man.

Society often depicts young black men in negative connotations so it’s refreshing to witness Isaiah and his classmates representing the true essence of young black men. I am humbled and count it as a privilege for him to think enough of me to stand on the foundation of my shoulders and propel the profession forward.

What career advice have you given to Isaiah that you’d like to share with other students?

Always be yourself and display humility. Never feel that you have anything to prove to anyone but God. Simply give the very best that you have to give and seize every opportunity to develop your skills and enhance your knowledge base. Never stop learning! When you humanize and truly care for your patients, the rewards will come. Protect your patients and your license at all costs.

What have you enjoyed most about the pharmacy profession?

The opportunity to help patients achieve success in their health status continues to be my greatest reward. I also love mentoring and sharing with students to help mold their careers. I cannot leave out the opportunities I’ve had to share my knowledge with other pharmacists and healthcare disciplines both domestic and international.

Isaiah Brown, P3 student
Hometown: Jackson, Miss.

Why did you choose Ole Miss pharmacy?

I chose Ole Miss Pharmacy for several reasons. First, part of the curriculum is conducted in my hometown of Jackson, allowing me to be near my loved ones and serve the community that I grew up in as I study and develop into a pharmacist. Second, I selected Ole Miss pharmacy because I was accepted into the Early Entry program out of high school. This program enabled me to secure a spot in the pharmacy school without taking the PCAT, while also providing access to various benefits and opportunities such as scholarships, mentoring and leadership. Finally, I chose Ole Miss pharmacy for its reputation and quality. Ole Miss pharmacy is nationally ranked for externally funded research and offers a variety of career options and settings for its graduates. Additionally, it boasts a dedicated and supportive faculty and staff committed to advancing the profession and patient care.

Why do you want to be a pharmacist?

I chose pharmacy as a profession because it combines my passion for health care science and helping people while offering a variety of career options and flexibility. I value having a balanced and fulfilling personal and professional life, and pharmacy allows me to achieve these aspirations and more. I also witnessed firsthand the impact that my father made in his community through pharmacy, so I decided to do the same in my own way.

What do you admire about your dad professionally?

I greatly admire my father’s dedication to community service, particularly through his active involvement with the Magnolia State Pharmaceutical Society. I appreciate his commitment to building strong relationships with his patients, as it fosters trust but also enhances health outcomes. Additionally, I believe his eagerness to mentor and support students and young pharmacists is truly commendable.

Best career advice your dad has given you?

Pharmacy is a small world. Treat every day like it’s an interview. Wherever you are, whether it’s at work or on rotation, someone is likely watching.

Do you know what area of pharmacy you might like to work in?

I am currently undecided on a career path, but my interests include public health pharmacy (specifically in substance use disorder), ambulatory care and pharmaceutical industry within medical affairs.

What have you enjoyed about the UM School of Pharmacy as a student?

I’ve found great joy participating in the various opportunities for service and leadership available at the School of Pharmacy. Through active involvement in organizations like Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA), I’ve not only significantly advanced my career but also learned invaluable lessons and forged long-lasting friendships. These experiences have enriched my journey as a student, leaving me with several of my favorite pharmacy school memories.