Bill Riffee

Bill Riffee

Where are they now?

Bill Riffee, Ph.D.

Current Residency: Montrose, West Virginia | Current Position: Pastor

Years employed at UF:



Dean of the UF College of Pharmacy

West Virginia has always been home to Bill Riffee, Ph.D. He was born and raised in Weirton, a steel country town in the state’s northern panhandle. As a pharmacy student at West Virginia University, he met his wife, Judy, R.Ph., and the couple married a month after graduation. The appreciation they share for their home state made it a natural fit to retire in the mountains of central West Virginia.

“We have a mountain top home on 300 acres that keeps us busy nearly year-round,” Riffee said. “Judy enjoys gardening and teaching our grandson how to plant and raise vegetables, and I spend a lot of time in the summer months tending to the property.”

Riffee was ordained as a minister in 1986, and he now pastors two country churches in rural West Virginia. He’s been a mainstay in the pulpit for three years and finds it rejuvenating working with his church members. It’s a natural fit for Riffee, who for 17 years led the University of Florida College of Pharmacy as dean. Under his guidance, the college embraced the digital transformation of the late 1990s and expanded its footprint in online education across the country. He also played an instrumental role in establishing the college’s distance campuses in Jacksonville, Orlando and St. Petersburg.

“I look back fondly on my 17 years at UF and all that we were able to accomplish,” Riffee said. “I was fortunate to build on the shoulders of my predecessor Dean Michael Schwartz and watched with great pride as Dean Julie Johnson helped elevate the college to the top 5 of the U.S. News & World Report rankings.” Bill and Judy make occasional trips to Gainesville to visit family and enjoy reconnecting with former faculty and Gator pharmacy alumni at national meetings. While they feel very much at home in West Virginia, they are never far from the fond memories of Florida.