AAPT was the first Pharmacy Technician Association and we remain a Not-For-Profit Association. Our Association began in 1979 with volunteer pharmacy technicians and today we are still run by volunteer pharmacy technicians. AAPT continues to serve the interests of ALL pharmacy technicians through our Executive Board, Committees, the National Office and our Chapters. As the role of the pharmacy technician expands, AAPT continues to be an active participant in making decisions which affect changes at all levels of our profession.

It all began in 1979 when the Association of Pharmacy Technicians (APT) was established. After a pharmacist society meeting, about 10 technicians in attendance decided to meet for dinner to discuss the idea of creating an independent organization to provide continuing education and additional services that would benefit the technicians in the Los Angeles area.

The group formed a steering committee consisting of Cynthia Carlson, Susan Gibbins, Michelle Marquet, Lucille Motus and Anita Sheline. Plans were made to invite the entire technician/clerk population in the LA area to hear ideas and to get their input on what they might expect from a technician organization, deal with some minor housekeeping details and, most importantly, see if there was really enough support from the technician community to continue the process of creating a technician organization. The first meeting was June 5, 1979 and the response was resounding.

With the help of Bergen Burnswig Drug Company and the local telephone book, flyers were distributed throughout the LA area announcing the June meeting and including the statement “There is a definite desire and need for creating an organization for pharmacy technicians. In order to do this, we must begin by developing a strong foundation so the organization can grow and build upon itself. This in turn will give technicians a feeling of professionalism by enabling them to learn their job through continuing education and knowledge expansion by involvement with others. This will allow the profession to be known and accepted by promoting awareness of the field.”

On June 19, 1979, the steering committee met and made it official. Based on the tremendous support and input from the first meeting, they deemed it appropriate to move forward with creation of the group.

At the July 1979 meeting, they decided to call the group the ASSOCATION of PHARMACY TECHNICIANS. The first officers were elected and given responsibilities as follows: Anita Sheline, President and Organizational Affairs; Lucille Motus, Vice President and Communications: Cynthia Carlson, Secretary and Membership; Sue Gibbons, Treasurer and Legislative; and Michelle Marquet, Parliamentarian and Community Affairs.

AAPT Timeline of Milestones

May 1979 - APT Founded

Steering committee formed

June 1979

First meeting and officers selected

July 1979

Group named


Constitution and Bylaws created. San Diego, CA Chapter formed. With the purchase of Roberts Rules of Order and help of friends, the Constitution and Bylaws were adopted

January 1982

Went National. Las Vegas, NV, 1st chapter outside of CA

May 1982

Created Executive Board. Membership from 38 states plus DC, Puerto Rico, Canada and Saudi Arabia

November 1982

First CE article and test posted in APT newsletter

August 1983

First Convention held in Las Vegas, NV. 95 attendees from 16 states. Adopted Mrs. Fields Cookies as APT “official” cookie

August 1986

First East Coast Convention Washington, DC

August 1987

Dayton Area APT receives 1st Chapter of the Year Patricia Dexter receives 1st Founders Award

October 1991

Official Name Change from APT to American Association of Pharmacy Technicians (AAPT)

August 1992

Joint Convention with the Canadian Association of Pharmacy Technicians Toronto, Canada

August 2003

1st Award Recipients: Allegiance Award – Beverly Miller, President’s Award – Fred Shackelford

July 2015

1st Virtual Convention. On-line CE to be completed at your pace over a number of days