It was a great honour for me to receive the Poncho, the symbol of the Presidency of the ISPN, from my friend and past-president, Saffet Mutluer, on November 9, 2010 at our 38th annual meeting in Jeju Island, Korea.
This meeting will always be special for me and I wish to thank Kyu–Chang Wang and his team for not only organizing a very successful and well run meeting, but also for their wonderful hospitality. As I said in Jeju after receiving the Poncho, it was an interesting coincidence that Joong-Uhn Choi received the Poncho at the annual meeting in Vancouver, Canada and brought it to Korea. In 2010, I received the Poncho in Korea and have brought it back to Vancouver!
As most of you know, The Mission of the ISPN is to improve the health and welfare of children requiring neurosurgical care throughout the world by scientific research and close international cooperation irrespective of class, colour, creed or economic condition. One of the most important ways in which we do this is by continuing education of our members and of all neurosurgeons with an interest in the care of children.
Starting 2 years ago, with the presidency of Rick Abbott, our society embarked on a major makeover to allow us to utilize the current and developing electronic communication tools to further our educational role. In 2010 we became incorporated as a registered charity, which has allowed us better access to educational grants from industry and also has created a savings in taxes that translates into more income that can be applied to our educational activities. Through the hard work and resourcefulness of William Harkness, who has been chair of our Communications Committee, we now have a state of the art website, which will allow us to create more educational content on line than previously. Concurrent with the development of our new website, Rick Abbott has expended much energy in creating an on line Guide to Pediatric Neurosurgery, which will be accessible through our website.
I see this year as one of consolidation. We are now ready to use the enhanced website for education of our members and I know that the Communications Committee will be hard at work creating educational opportunities via the website. The other big project will be the completion of first version of our electronic Guide. All members of the ISPN are encouraged to go to the website on a regular basis and to participate in reviewing or creating educational content. As far as the Guide goes, all members are encouraged to participate as authors of chapters. Please go to the website, where you will find a link to our electronic guide, see what it is all about and if you are so motivated, volunteer to participate in the creation of the guide by contacting Rick Abbott through the website. We are all hoping that this Guide will be ready for unveiling by the next meeting in Goa in October, 2011.
We have a very competent executive and I look forward to working with them in furthering the goals of our society in the next year. I am already looking forward to the meeting in Goa, which will be hosted by Chadrashekhar Deopujari from October 16 – 20, 2011. As most know, Goa is one of the tourist highlights of India and I know that Chadrashekhar and his team are organizing a spectacular meeting. He will be working with John Kestle, our Scientific Chairperson, to create an outstanding and educational scientific program. I hope that many of you will attend and I look forward to seeing you in Goa!
ISPN President 2010-2011