Wednesday, 05 June 2019 15:02

Downtown Rockingham continues to grow with new pharmacy

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Cristi Tillis snips the ceremonial ribbon in front of her new business, Dr. Pharmacy in downtown Rockingham. Pictured, from left: Neil Robinette, chairman of the Richmond County Chamber of Commerce; Rockingham Mayor Steve Morris; Tillis; Todd Tillis, husband and owner of Todd's Computers; Richmond County Commissioner Tavares Bostic; Chamber President Emily Tucker. Cristi Tillis snips the ceremonial ribbon in front of her new business, Dr. Pharmacy in downtown Rockingham. Pictured, from left: Neil Robinette, chairman of the Richmond County Chamber of Commerce; Rockingham Mayor Steve Morris; Tillis; Todd Tillis, husband and owner of Todd's Computers; Richmond County Commissioner Tavares Bostic; Chamber President Emily Tucker. Matt Harrelson - Richmond Observer

ROCKINGHAM — Dr. Pharmacy held its official grand opening Wednesday morning, and the emphasis across the board was the continuing growth of Rockingham's downtown area.

Owner Cristi Tillis opened the pharmacy a little over a month ago and along with her husband Todd  owner of Todd's Computers  they have taken what was an empty storefront and filled it with two new businesses.

"I'm here doing this downtown because I have worked in independent pharmacy, I've worked in chain pharmacy, and there's a difference," said Tillis. "There's a difference in how we're able to take care of people, there's a difference in how we treat our employees and how we treat the community. I'm here to help take of anybody that we can help, and I'm tickled to be part of the growing downtown."

Richmond County Chamber of Commerce President Emily Tucker acknowledged that the couple has spent countless hours and put a lot of sweat into the building, which she called, "beautiful."

Neil Robinette, chairman of the Chamber's board of directors, echoed those thoughts saying how great it is to add businesses to a vibrant downtown Rockingham. 

"The best thing is you get to keep a close eye on Todd," he joked.

Robinette also presented Tillis with a Richmond County Chamber of Commerce sticker to display on her storefront as a new Chamber member.

"It is indeed a pleasure to see another business open in downtown Rockingham. For 40 years it's gone that way, and now it's come back this way," said Rockingham Mayor Steve Morris, motioning his arm down and up. "There are 11 new businesses within one block of where we're standing right now that's opened in the last five years. All of them owned by local people, employing local people and being part of the local business community. I think if you look at that record, there are not many small towns in the last 10 years that have had that kind of growth."

Morris added that with the completion of Richmond Community College's downtown campus expected by the end of the year, things will only get better with "more feet on the street." This, in turn, will bring more people working and shopping downtown, he said.

"If ya'll have anybody here that ya'll know that's caught up in a pharmacy that's not taking care of them, please send them to us," Tillis said Wednesday. "We're eager to get in and make a difference where we can."