Tenth Year Retrospective

editor’s note

Editor, The Florida Pediatrician

PUBLISHED SUMMER 2023 | Volume 43, Issue 3


It seems unbelievable that 2023 is the 10th year of the Florida Chapter’s Annual Conference, The Future of Pediatric Practice.

When I was President of the Florida Chapter, I was interested in starting our conference. We conceived the idea in 2013 and worked on planning the conference. Allison Finely was the Chapter Executive Director under an arrangement with the Florida Medical Association. Dr. Tommy Schechtman was the Vice President and Dr. Lisa Cosgrove was the immediate Past President. Our biggest concern at the time was not losing money. We decided to accept financial support from the pharmaceutical industry and other sponsors. The Chapter, however, would have complete control over the content of the conference. Funding had to come in the form of educational grants. The 2014 conference had outstanding CME and a substantial number of attendees. We did not lose money. If memory serves, we actually made a little more than $2,000. This was a considerable success, and, as they say, the rest is history. The conference has grown with family activities, more CME, and increased participation from students and trainees. It has become a “Labor Day weekend event” that many of us mark on our calendars so that we can participate. Kudos to FCAAP’s Executive Director Alicia Adams and her team, who made this conference such an enormous success. I can only bask in the sun of future FCAAP annual conferences and be energized by the participation of so many members. This conference, I hope, will continue to grow, and become bigger and better.

The ten-year anniversary gave me pause to think about some of the other initiatives that were started during my Presidency.

I initiated, as President, the Lifetime Membership. Now I would like to say that it was a tremendous success. I was the first Lifetime Member, and Dr. Schechtman was the second. Since that time, however, there are only 8 Lifetime Members. I am sure many will become Lifetime Members in the future.

When I was Vice President, the Chapter was close to becoming insolvent. Thanks to heroic efforts of the President at the time, Dr. Lisa Cosgrove, who pulled the Chapter out of danger of insolvency. I know she had to make some exceedingly tough decisions. Her efforts put the Chapter on sound financial footing. Due to her efforts, the Chapter enjoys financial stability today.

Next, I started the reserve fund. Thanks in large part to leadership shown by Dr. Cosgrove, we were financially strong enough to create a reserve fund. The reserve fund is supposed to have around 6 to 12 months of operating funds. This is the industry standard for not-for profit organizations. We currently have enough reserve funds to operate the Chapter for 6 months. We need to have a target of 12-month worth of reserve funds.

Perhaps the most important thing we did during my Presidency was to begin the process of separating from the Florida Medical Association and hiring our own Executive Director. The hiring of Mrs. Adams was the result of that process. Without a doubt, this was the best outcome of my Presidency.

Thank you for allowing me to go down memory lane.

The Chapter is stronger now than it has ever been. The Chapter’s future is bright. The current Chapter leadership is exceptional, and the younger future leaders coming up the ladder are outstanding. I am excited to see the next generation of Pediatricians take over the Chapter and guide it to an even better and brighter future.