Lisa C. Buono ’79 proves that there is an array of options out there for graduates of the College of Science and Mathematics. Her degree in chemistry and minor in mathematics led her to a career in the Over-the-Counter drug marketplace, a segment of the pharmaceutical industry.
“My degree helped me to approach problem solving in a logical way. It really helped me to THINK. I had an advantage because I was able to understand the chemistry behind different aspects of pharmaceuticals. I understood the formulating that was going on in the plants. I understood the creating and testing that was going on in the labs. These things weren’t foreign to me.”
This knowledge of areas outside of marketing, where she built her career, gave Lisa a greater appreciation for how teams work. “You get things done as a whole. I can appreciate the work that is done by every functional area.”
After Montclair State, Lisa went on to receive her MBA. Coupled with her chemistry background, it “meshed very nicely” and helped her get into consulting within the pharmaceutical industry and then into staff positions at Lederle and Wyeth Consumer Healthcare. Currently, she is the Director of U.S. Over- the- Counter Medicines at Actavis, Inc.
Calling herself a “thinker” and a “studier”, her time at Montclair State University was spent focusing on her studies. However, she still keeps in touch with many of her classmates. “I made an awful lot of good friends, some of whom I still see. They’ve gone on to do very well for themselves.” Lisa remains in contact with two of her former lab partners, Laura La Marca Spaulding and Roberta Ducci ’79, and recalls others as well including David Oxley ’79, Anthony Pico ’79, George Stiff and Terence Gunning ’79. “At the time, there were very small class sizes. There were no more than thirty of us, so everyone moved through the program together and knew one another well.”
Lisa fondly recalls a professor, Dr. Kasner, whom she says paid “super attention to us”. While her classmates had plans to go on to medical school or receive their PhDs, Lisa was headed off to business school. “Lisa, ‘the sellout’, he announced, you’re going off to business school.”
She credits much of her success to Montclair State:
“I received a wonderful foundation in chemistry and more while at Montclair State. The faculty was just great. My education laid the foundation for success in all elements of my work, including marketing, marketing research, and brand management. The experience assisted me in leadership roles, and with mentoring and training people in my areas of responsibility.”