Last updated September 2010.
As our Life Member Group approaches its first birthday, we seem on schedule developmentally. I believe we are fast crawlers, with the hope that we will soon be walking.
It has been noted before that Life Members have been lavish in their giving! The Life Member Fund has been a definite bright spot for AACAP's Development Committee. Many of you have donated what would have been your dues, while some others have given even more. Thought is being given to how the more generous donors should be recognized, although over $20,000 was donated in less than a year without any promise of recognition. It has been amazing. Some donors have commented that they came to realize that with no or little professional income, a donation provides a much sweeter tax write-off than had dues as a professional expense.
The Life Member Group's first priority chosen at our creation last October was to support young people entering our specialty. An early emphasis was targeted upon small educational grants and upon mentoring. In this Life Member e-Newsletter, you will find evidence that these priorities are crawling into play. You will read about the two superb residents whose travel to next month's meeting in New York City has been aided by Life Member Fund Travel Grants. You will also read a lovely essay by Dr. Etemad on supervision/mentoring.
In our second year it is essential that more thought and conversation be devoted to defining a Life Member mentoring program and to finding more ways money can be raised and spent to better reflect Life Members' specific interests. To get the best ideas from the greatest number of members will require broader communication. The use of language is a developmental landmark of great importance. Do you have any thoughts? In both previous e-Newsletters the use of the Life Member On-Line Community site to communicate and debate ideas, opinions, and complaints has been stressed. Unfortunately, it remains used mainly by subcommittee members and an occasional past-president. We need an increasing number of computer brave and computer mature Life Members who will develop communicative speech during our second year. Without it, the Life Member Group's organizational development will suffer, since decision-making will remain too concentrated in a small subcommittee and be isolated from the members who are all affected. This has happened in other organizations that have tried to develop an active senior subgroup. Conventional wisdom is that other such groups have faltered because older people cannot be aroused, but they also then resent it when decisions are made for them ? a classic Catch 22. Academy members understand development better than most, so maybe we will be less passive than some other senior groups were. If you don't know how to get on-line, please Google American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, look to the left and type Life Member Website in the Search box. When obtained, scroll down (it was #16 last time I looked) to On Line Community Instructions. Click on this and follow the directions. Once at the Community, save the site, so you never have to follow these directions again.
Also in this issue is a summary of Life Member events in New York. This shows definite development from last year, and next year there will be even more LMG involvement in Toronto. The Life Member Dinner, perhaps because of serious drinking and eating, has been by far the most popular offering of The Life Member Group. Available space at this year's très elegant University Club is more limited than previously. It is likely to be sold out. If interested, reserve sooner rather than later. You will also get Ted Shapiro at no extra charge.
Doug Kramer informed me that fellow Life Member Jack Westman was recently awarded the Distinguished Service Lifetime Achievement Award from the Wisconsin Council of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry (WCCAP). Jack was Professor at The UW Medical School for more than 30 years, was the first President of The WCCAP, has been a hard worker for The Academy, and is now President of Wisconsin Cares, Inc., an interdisciplinary organization of retired professionals that works to enhance the well-being of families and children.
Thanks to Hanna Smith, Heidi Fordi, and, as always, to Stu Copans for his great cartoon talent.
I hope to see you in The Big Apple,
John Schowalter, M.D.
Chair, Life Members Subcommittee
Last updated September 2010.