banner for department blog

Julia Pearl Hughes – #DiversityInHealthcare


Julia Pearl Hughes was a trailblazer in pharmacy, believed to be one of the first African-American hospital pharmacists and the first African-American woman to own and operate a drugstore.

Dr. Hughes graduated from Howard University with a pharmaceutical degree in 1897. After completing postgraduate work, she ran the hospital pharmacy at Frederick Douglass Hospital. In 1900, she opened the Hughes Pharmacy drugstore in Philadelphia.

In addition to her achievements in pharmacy, Dr. Hughes had a number of other successful pursuits. These included founding a haircare company and a newspaper, successfully suing a railroad for racial discrimination, and running for office in the New York State Assembly.

Info and photo source:

Anna Louise James – #DiversityInHealthcare


As the first African American woman graduate of the Brooklyn College of Pharmacy, and the first female African American pharmacist in the state of Connecticut, Anna Louise James is considered one of the first female African-American pharmacists in the country.

She was born in 1886 in Hartford, and eventually took over her brother-in-law’s pharmacy in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. James Pharmacy was a town staple until her retirement in 1967.

More info:

Photo source: