Message from Chair of ANZSA - July 2020
Many thanks to the sarcoma community for the amazing contribution in challenging times during the COVID 19 pandemic. Many members and patients have been disrupted and have adjusted to best accommodate the restrictions under which movement and access to services in many communities have been curtailed. Thanks to all and heartfelt acknowledgement for your actions and support.
The past six months have been very active and busy for the ANZSA Board and staff. The Board has met on two occasions with the first meeting held in February 2020 before the pandemic and the second meeting held via Zoom in May 2020. The ANZSA Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) meeting scheduled for May was cancelled and will be held at a later date. The ANZSA Executive met in January and April 2020.
At the May 2020 meeting, the Board reviewed the overall progress on implementation of the ANZSA 2016-2021 Strategic Plan. It was pleasing to note the excellent progress with all 34 milestones and execution of the plan substantially complete.
Preliminary planning for the development of the ANZSA 2022-2027 Strategic Plan will progress shortly, and we will be seeking your input on key considerations in shaping the next phase of ANZSA’s development. I encourage you to take the time to complete the strategy survey to ensure your views are reflected in the new strategy.
In preparation for the next strategy cycle, the Board is reviewing governance, including composition and portfolio roles of ANZSA Directors. I would like to congratulate and warmly welcome Richard Carey-Smith, who has been appointed as an observer to the Board at the February meeting. Richard will be assuming the role of Chair of the Orthopaedic Committee. Peter Steadman will be taking on the role of Chair ANZSA ISOLS Education Committee (a new committee yet to be formed) to leverage Peter Steadman’s stewardship of the upcoming ISOLS global conference in Brisbane in 2023. I would like to thank Peter for his leadership of the Orthopaedic Committee and acknowledge his continuing involvement.
This year, two Directors have offered themselves for re-election – Peter Steadman and Geoff McKinnon. These rotations in line with the Board’s succession planning.
Additionally, the Board will be calling for nominations for two Director positions. As part of a skills matrix review, the Board is interested in candidates with a scientific background and those with advocacy and fundraising skills. Details will be sought shortly.
ANZSA finances are in a sound position and I would like to thank Geoff McKinnon for his wise counsel and guidance on funding and investments. Together with Marianne Phillips, a Board Director, Geoff and Marianne have been instrumental in leading the ANZSA Consumer Advisory Panel, which has vibrant and active participation, and I thank all the members of this panel.
David Gyorki is leading the planning of the 2020 Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) through the ASM Committee. Initially face to face, these arrangements had to be cancelled. However, it is pleasing to see that planning is well underway for a virtual ASM to be held on 8-9 October 2020.
Thanks also to Angela Hong and Jayesh Desai as Co-Chairs of the Scientific Advisory Committee. This area has been an engine of activity over the past year with ANZSA involved in over 12 trials/projects, including database activities including many international participants.
A huge thanks to our Chief Executive Officer Denise Caruso who continues to work tirelessly and with effectiveness supported by excellent staff. The staff have been working remotely for an extended period and despite the many disruptions imposed by COVID 19 have continued to support and progress many activities.
I look forward to the continued strong growth, development and progress of ANZSA and thank every member of the sarcoma community for your care, concern, support and progress.
Read all about our updates in our July 2020 Newsletter.
Adrian Cosenza | Chair of ANZSA