By Lori Tremmel Freeman, BS, MBA
Chief Executive Officer, AMCHP
I mean WOW!
What a fabulous Annual Conference we had in Kansas City, Missouri, in early March! I readily admit I am completely biased. There's so much planning and so many decisions, countless planning meetings and endless hours of coordination that contribute to a successful annual conference that you have to believe it will be wildly successful. As always, we are feeling very re-energized at AMCHP after drawing from the enthusiasm, excitement, positive vibes and collective commitment that emerges from each of our annual gatherings.
As you read this issue of Pulse –which builds on the conference to explore the theme of "Engagement with Intention" – I hope it triggers a thought or memory – from your own work or from something you learned, shared or experienced in Kansas City -- that you will pay forward.
In the meantime, here are my personal top five highlights from the conference. There are many more than I could put in this list, but I don't want to be a spoiler for the rest of the issue!
#5 – Kansas City turned out to be an amazing experience/experiment for AMCHP: We drew record attendance, a record number of exhibitors and a record number of session proposals. A huge thanks goes out to all of our new attendees and exhibitors as well as our true and trusted returning "fan club."
#4 – I just love our student scholarship winners and our emerging young professionals. There's a great feeling knowing that these awardees are our next MCH leaders. We clearly are in great hands! Their smiles and excitement were truly contagious.
#3 – Speaking of emerging leaders, how about all of our youth at this year's conference? And not only did they attend and participate fully, but they gave lots of powerful feedback about how we can engage with other youth in the future.
#2 – We had amazing general sessions this year with really interesting plenary speakers on all three days of the conference. Tremendous thanks once more to our panel on Zika, MCH & Emergency Response (Catherine Eppes of Baylor College of Medicine; Laura Kavanagh, of MCHB; Dana Meaney-Delman of the CDC; Cassandra Pasley of the Florida DoH; Patrick Ramsey of the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio; and Lee Warner of the CDC), as well as to Brian Castrucci of the de Beaumont Center for his talk Let's Get to Work: Moving from Data to Action to Build the Public Health Workforce of the Future, and to Dr. Soma Stout for her presentation on Building a Movement with Equity As the Price of Admission: 100 Million Healthier Lives. Just a reminder that all of our general sessions were recorded, and I encourage you to listen to them if you missed and share them onward.
#1 – Aside from the famous Kansas City barbeque, the favorite thing about this conference is that we get to do it all over again. I hope we can count on seeing you next year on February 10-13 in Arlington, Virginia!
Recognizing I have a somewhat biased view of the conference, if there's anything at all you'd like to share along the lines of constructive feedback or quality improvement, I always welcome your thoughts. You can email me at email@example.com.