Hy-Vee Names Specialty Pharmacy President, Promotes Amber Execs  1/29/2016

Mike Agostino, current president of Amber Pharmacy/Hy-Vee Pharmacy Solutions has been promoted to vice president of pharmacy innovation/business development at Hy-Vee. In this newly created position, Agostino will work with Hy-Vee’s health and wellness teams to research, develop and launch programs and initiatives that further grow Hy-Vee’s health brand. In addition, Agostino will continue his involvement in industry and government relations on behalf of Hy-Vee.

“I spend 40 percent of my time on pharmacy issues because health care has become such an important piece of our business,” said Randy Edeker, chairman, CEO and president of Hy-Vee, who is also chairman of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores. “I’ve asked Mike to come to our team to develop future innovation that will strengthen our pharmacy business in this ever changing environment. He has a wealth of skills and experience, and that’s why I’m excited for the new ideas he’ll bring.”

Hy-Vee acquired Amber Pharmacy in 2014 after the two companies had worked together over several years to create Hy-Vee Pharmacy Solutions. Known as a pioneer in the specialty pharmacy industry, Amber is headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska, and has pharmacies strategically located in Chicago, Dallas and Philadelphia.

Agostino joined Amber Pharmacy in 2008 after previously working as a vice president of managed care sales for Walgreens, where his responsibilities included operations, sales, business development, small business solutions, contracting and client services.

In addition to his leadership role at Amber Pharmacy/Hy-Vee Pharmacy Solutions, Agostino is extremely active in the pharmacy community. He serves on the board for the National Association of Specialty Pharmacy and is a member of its Executive Committee, Membership Committee and Government Affairs Committee. He is an instructor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s pharmacy program, an editorial board member for Specialty Pharmacy Times and the author of many published articles.

“I am pleased and feel very comfortable leaving Amber Pharmacy and Hy-Vee Pharmacy Solutions in such capable and talented hands,” Agostino said. “I look forward to the opportunity to serve in a key role that will add value and make a difference in the rapidly changing and evolving health care market.”

Aaron Wiese will replace Agostino as president of Amber Pharmacy. Wiese currently is assistant vice president of Hy-Vee and chief operating officer of Amber. “Aaron has a keen understanding of our health care system and both specialty and traditional pharmacy,” said Edeker. “His leadership skills combined with his ability to organize and communicate effectively gave him the expertise to lead this very important subsidiary. He will help us deliver absolutely incredible care to our patients and position us for the future.”

This week, Hy-Vee also announced the promotions of several other key leaders at Amber Pharmacy/Hy-Vee Pharmacy Solutions:

  • Julie Zatizabal to senior vice president of trade relations.
  • Micaila Ruiz, PharmD, R.Ph., to chief pharmacy officer.
  • Jo Ann Hyres to senior vice president sales and marketing.
  • Peggy Tomes to senior vice president of reimbursement and billing.
Amber Pharmacy is a regular participant in ECRM’s Specialty Pharmacy EPPS event, and during this past week, Zatizabal led one of seven roundtables during the event’s Thought Interaction Pods, a program in which attendees had roundtable discussions on a variety of key industry topics (see video below).

Hy-Vee, Inc. is an employee-owned corporation operating 240 retail stores across eight Midwestern states with sales of $9.3 billion annually. Hy-Vee ranks among the top 25 supermarket chains and the top 50 private companies in the United States. 

Contact Michael Castillo, SVP of Pharmacy, for more information: 440-528-0441

Zatizabal led one of seven roundtables during the event’s Thought Interaction Pods, a program in which attendees had roundtable discussions on a variety of key industry topics

Joseph Tarnowski

VP Content


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February 16, 2016 11:38 PM


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February 16, 2016 11:48 PM


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