Presented by Hossein Gharib, MD, MACP, MACE
American Thyroid Association
Annual Membership and Business Meeting
Hotel DEL Coronado
Thursday, October 30, 2014
There is no greater honor than recognition by your peers, and serving as the ATA President this year, is no doubt a great highlight of my long professional career. I continue to be grateful for this privilege and opportunity.
Our society, as an all-volunteer professional organization, receives outstanding support from our domestic and international members who volunteer for service at many levels. As I have mentioned previously, I consider service to ATA both a duty and an honor. On that note, and on behalf of the ATA, I’d like to express my appreciation to all of our dedicated members who continue to enthusiastically serve or chair our numerous committees.
I want to be sure to recognize and thank the ATA Executive Committee and the Board of Directors for their leadership and support. I especially want to thank Bryan Haugen, ATA Immediate Past President, and John Morris, ATA Secretary, who provided me with valuable advice and experience this year. John will report to you details of our many activities after this presentation.
Our great administrative staff deserves warm thanks for their dedicated service and long hours. Bobbi Smith, our CEO, with a monumental memory of ATA procedures and policies, together with her outstanding team, Adonia Coates, Sharleene Cano, Kelly Hoff, & Shirlyn Barger, superbly manage day-to-day operations and finances of the ATA. In the ATA Signal eNews last April, we mentioned a brief summary of their backgrounds and duties. Today, once again, I want to express my deep personal gratitude to all.
Our guidelines make ATA not only more visible but, more importantly, provide education and service to practicing endocrinologists worldwide. During the past year we completed three more guidelines. Bryan Haugen chaired the Task Force that updated and revised the Thyroid Nodules and Cancer Guidelines. The new recommendations were presented in part as a successful and well-attended satellite symposium at the Endocrine Society in Chicago last June. Sam Wells and his committee have completed an update of Medullary Thyroid Cancer Guidelines. Finally, Gary Francis and pediatric colleagues have finished the first edition of Management of Pediatrics Thyroid Nodules and Cancer Guidelines, to be published soon. Two more guidelines, an update on hyperthyroidism, and another in pregnancy, are in early stages of development.
I am very grateful to Mike Tuttle and Fred Wondisford, who accepted to co-chair the 2014 Program Committee, and worked tirelessly with the Program Committee members for planning an exciting, high-quality program for the annual meeting. The program includes pediatric, surgical, basic, clinical and translational advances in thyroid practice, plus more than 350 accepted abstracts. This year, as in the recent past, our attendance surpassed 1000. The combination of an excellent scientific program, pleasant Southern California fall weather, and historic Hotel del Coronado, likely explains why so many people enthusiastically attended this year’s annual meeting.
Further thanks and congratulations to our outstanding editors, for their continued, superb service. Peter Kopp is the Editor-in-Chief of our flagship journal, Thyroid, with a global reader- and authorship, and an ever-increasing impact factor. Jerry Hershman continues to serve as the Editor-in-Chief of Clinical Thyroidology, Alan Farwell has been Editor-in-Chief of Clinical Thyroidology for the Public for five years, and Jerry Doherty, appointed in 2014 as editor-in-Chief of VideoEndocrinology, has successfully launched VE with Liebert.
Special thanks to Greg Randolph, who has done a great job as Treasurer, after David Sarne completed his term last year. Overall investment funds are healthy and so we have, after much research, expanded our general investment strategy to three investment houses in order to optimize our investment returns. Also operating funds were sufficient to allow for diversion of a significant portion to add to our overall investment strategy while maintaining adequate reserves.
Congratulations to our incoming President, Bob Smallridge, and new Secretary, Vic Bernet, both from Mayo Clinic-Jacksonville. They are a great team to lead the ATA, and I welcome working with them and the new Board, over the coming year.
In closing, as I reflect on achievements this past year, I am proud of the fact that we provided stable leadership to ATA, completed several guidelines, successfully launched VideoEndocrinology, planned and executed an outstanding annual meeting, kept ATA visibility high, and during an unfavorable economy, made sound financial choices. To John Morris, my good friend and Mayo comrade, thank you for helping me and for your dedication to the ATA.
Above all, please remember that Gharib completed his term without mishap or impeachment!
My heartiest thanks to each and every one of you for the opportunity to serve as your 2014 President.