Looking back with gratitude; looking forward with excitement

Henry VanBrocklin, PhD, SRS PresidentDear Friends and Colleagues,

It was great to see many of you recently at the 21st ISRS meeting in Columbia, Missouri. I would like to thank Silvia Jurisson, the local organizing committee, and the program committee for planning and assembling an engaging and enlightening meeting. I know that you all join me in appreciation for the many volunteer hours that were given to provide a venue for us to share our scientific successes. Congratulations to Columbia for being a gracious host!

As this is my blog post as SRS President, I want to thank Bert Windhorst for his guidance and supervision of the Society as President over the last two years. His passion and leadership clearly strengthened the SRS organization both administratively and financially. Bert was instrumental in developing written policies for educational support of members and conferences with the assistance of the education committee. He also developed new policies for the biennial Society awards with the awards committee. Both of these policies were unanimously approved by the Board of Directors. Bert also worked with the Board for the Society to transition the financial responsibility for the biennial ISRS meetings to the Society. Since the inception in the 1970’s, the financial responsibility for the biennial meetings was left to the local organizing committees. As the meeting has grown and costs have risen significantly over the last 40+ years, it is more difficult for the local committees to take on this commitment. Starting with the 2019 meeting, the SRS will be financially responsible for its own meeting, like many of the other professional societies to which we belong. This is a significant step forward for the financial stability of our organization as well as the stability of the biennial symposium series, and I praise Bert for this successful effort.

I am excited to have taken the helm from Bert and look forward to working with our membership to continue to enhance the member benefits. I will working with the board to identify ways to keep our membership rolls level throughout the cycle between meetings. This will enable us to more effectively steward our financial commitments between meetings and more effectively support the educational activities of the Society. We will also look at ways to enhance our educational activities to a broader segment of our membership in between the biennial meetings.

This is your Society, and as members you have a voice in the governance and administration of the Society assets. As our international footprint grows, how do we more effectively engage and retain our members? Therefore, I would appreciate hearing from you on the issues upon which we should be focusing. Please feel free to email me your thoughts and ideas.

It is an honor to lead your organization, and I look forward interacting with many of you over the next two years.

Respectfully Yours,

Henry VanBrocklin, PhD, SRS President