Improving Health Through Medical Physics


Bruce Thomadsen, PhD | Madison, WI

AAPM Newsletter — Volume 43 No. 4 — July | August 2018

AAPM Board and Strategic Planning

Last Newsletter, Board Chairwoman Melissa Martin gave the results from the Spring Clinical Board meeting, which was, the approval of AAPM's new Strategic Plan. In this article, I want to draw attention to the process. The Board spent much of the two days of meeting sitting in a committee of the whole to work on the Strategic Plan. While much of the plan was generated by the Strategic Planning Committee of the Board, and then enhanced by each of the councils, there was still work to be done. The Board broke into five tables to discuss the goals in the plan and the strategic objectives that would lead to achievement of the goals. The Board then came back together to discuss the proposed changes, combining some goals and rearranging and refining the objectives. They even added a new goal: Inclusion of Diversity. Immediate Past Chair Bruce Curran and our Executive Director, Angela Keyser, mostly organized (down to very fine details) and facilitated the meeting to help lead it to a successful conclusion: Thank you both very much. In the end, the 21 chapter representatives, the 12 members-at-large and the executives, along with the various non-voting members, all participated, all spoke and listened, and all worked together — planning, and showing that they are not too numerous to do so.

Tweaking the Organization

Parts of the proposed reorganization plan that did not pass last year did not have to do with the Board, but addressed some of the ways the councils operate, or could operate better. With the failure of the proposal, there still is work needed in AAPM's organization structure. Some ad-hoc committees have been seated to make proposals to smooth our operations.

  • Ad-hoc on indexing AAPM Website Content. Chaired by Robin Miller, this committee is proposing the use of standardized indexing keywords shared between our journals, meetings and video library, making searches more productive when looking for content.
  • Ad-hoc on Liaisons and Appointments. Chaired by Bruce Curran, this committee is addressing the roles of liaisons and how to make them more effective.
  • Ad-hoc on the Nomination Procedures. Chaired by Bhudatt Paliwal, this committee is to propose procedures for nominations to elected offices that would better represent the diversity in practice and makeup of our membership.
  • Ad-hoc on the Integration of Effort. Chaired by Sonja Dieterich, this committee has the most challenging of charges. AAPM has many topics that fall into different silos, for example imaging in therapy, international programs and some professional-scientific issues. Our current tree hierarchy inhibits, rather than facilitates, cross-branch cooperation. This committee will make suggestions to break the barriers.

Strategic Planning Again

The plan passed by the Board was not really a strategic plan. It was more a tactical plan to guide the expenditure of our resources, certainly funds but mostly volunteer effort, to achieve what we see as our goals. Strategic planning looks beyond these immediate and short-term concerns to plan for the health of the Association ten to fifteen years from now. No, we cannot predict what things will be like then, but we may be able to affect some of the factors that could shape the environment producing our future. This is the meaning of the theme for the Annual Meeting in Nashville: Beyond the Future. The President's Symposium, Monday, July 30, will feature our own Robert Jeraj talking about subjects into which medical physics may expand, and author and planner of the future Paul B. Brown discussing how we can make our future. There will be a workshop after the symposium to generate ideas on how to do all of this. It should be an exciting, and crucial, time.

A lot is happening in your association. Become a part of dynamic activity.

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