This spring, Lester Burris and his business partners opened the Hope Wellness Pharmacy just off the square downtown and say that Hope has definitely lived up to its name. The 29-year-old Bedford resident says the business is certainly looking forward to serving the Hope community and he offered a few insights about what brought Wellness Pharmacy to the area, why he chose this vocation, and he and his partners' first impressions of the town.
What was it about the Hope community that inspired you to open here?
Last fall we were approached by the town manager, JT Doane, to see if we would be interested in putting a pharmacy in because it was something that was identified by the town plan that had been done in 2011-2012. We decided it would be a good place to put a pharmacy in based on community need.
Is the first and only location you have?
No, we have one in Bloomington and New Castle.
Why the pharmacy business?
We are all pharmacists. The Andersons grew up in the pharmacy business. They asked me to be a part of the Bloomington venture and it went from there.
What was it about pharmacy medicine that attracted you?
I didn't have an interest in being a doctor, but I enjoy helping people and things related to healthcare and healthy living so it was a good fit.
Where did you attend college?
How long was it before you opened and were there any hiccups along the way?
Yeah there were a few setbacks. We've had some red tape as far as licensing through the state and setting up insurance contracts and sometimes it got pushed back on us, but that's OK.
How large of a facility is it?
It's roughly 1,500 square feet.
What will you have available for customers?
We can get a lot of things on request; we get an order every day of the week and can have next day delivery.
What are your hopes for getting the pharmacy fully staffed and running?
I'll be here a couple days a week for a little while to help get things going. We are looking at a couple of other pharmacists in the area to staff it going forward.
First impression, what do you think of Hope?
We think Hope is a great town. It truly lives up to the slogan, a Surprising Little Town. We were impressed with the energy and the things going on for a town of its size.