The Ozanam Charitable Pharmacy was initiated under the leadership of the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Mobile, and The Service Center of Catholic Social Services’ director, Sister Judith VanderGrinten (of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Agnes).
The Board of Directors of Ozanam Charitable Pharmacy held its first meeting in April 1997 to begin the formal planning process of opening a free pharmacy for the poor in Mobile County.
Doors for the state-licensed pharmacy officially opened in 1998. After 18 years on Dauphin Street in downtown Mobile, Ozanam Charitable Pharmacy moved to 109 South Cedar Street. This space is leased to Ozanam by the Mobile County Public School System.
Articles of Incorporation and by-laws were established, and approval of 501 (c) (3) status was granted. Startup funds were contributed by the Area Agency on Aging, St. Vincent de Paul Society of Mobile, Providence Hospital, Mobile Infirmary Medical Center, Daughters of Charity, Alabama Power Company Foundation, United Way’s Venture Grant Program and Catholic Social Services. The Service Center of Catholic Social Services agreed to screen applicants and provide receptionist services.