January 14, 2012
Treasure Island, Las Vegas
Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by Dr. Randy Jensen at 12:15 p.m. The minutes from the Summer Executive meetings were reviewed, and a few minor typos addressed and approved. Present at the meeting were physicians Randy Jensen, Joseph Beshay, Stewart Levy, Richard Day, Al Capanna, Brett Dietze, John MacFarlane, Paul Elliot, and Paul House. Not present were Joel MacDonald and Kelly Schmidt who were called away last minute with other obligations. Joel MacDonald checked in via phone and Dr. Michael Brown was consulted via phone.
Report of the President: Dr. Jensen affirmed our two guest speakers: Dr. Jeff Bruce and Dr. Charles Branch. Jeff Bruce M/D. is Professor of Neurological Surgery and Vice Chairman of Academic Affairs at Columbia University. He is also director of the Bartoli Brain Tumor Research Laboratory and Co-Director of the Columbia Brain Tumor Center. He is former Chair of the AANS/CNS Section on Tumors. Charles Branch is Professor and Chair of Neurosurgery at Wake Forest University. He has been President of North American Spine Society, Chair of AANS/CNS Section on Spine, Editor in Chief of The Spine Journal, and has served on the American Board of Neurological Surgery. Titles of their talks are to be announced. Since out last meeting Dr. Jensen appointed Dr. Kelley Schmidt as the new scientific program chairman, Dr. Paul Elliot to the membership committee, and Dr. John MacFarlane will be the member at large.
Report of the Vice President: Dr. Beshay confirmed that Vendor registration of $2500 covers opening reception. He has approximately 9 confirmed vendors and others waiting to see a more formal agenda. Vendors are invited to participate in all social events including golf, tennis, the Luau and closing dinner banquet, but are subject to the same additional participation fee for special events as are the physicians. Their registration fee does cover the opening reception. They are encouraged to participate as much as possible. The iPad giveaway to encourage participation in the vendor acknowledgement will continue for the coming year. In addition to completing their vendor card, the winner must be present at the awards banquet; this will also encourage banquet attendance. Vendor participation challenges include distance, expense and Hawaii being considered a resort destination. Since the Western Society goes to HI every third year we will try to get their vendor list to facilitate vendor contact. We would like to see 20-30 vendors.
Report of the Treasurer: The financial state of the Society remains excellent. Membership has number is at approximately 88 counting our 7 new members from last year. Due are going out late this year mainly due to our database problems. Our meeting cost for 2011 was 62K with a net gain of 42K, the largest in the last 10 years. This was thought to be related to a standout vendor attendance (49 vendors) and puts us in a good position for our upcoming HI meeting that is one of the most expensive venues. Some monies were also shifted out of CDs to make more cash available. The resident fund holds 19K and is was decided to apply that to new resident awards that include cash awards of $750, $500, $250 for 1st through 3rd place, with $1500 travel reimbursement to each. Taxes were filed late but the interest earned offset any penalty. Costs of maintaining the database were discussed and details deferred discussion on the website.
Report of the Secretary: Integrating the website, email list, mailing list, membership roster, membership billing list, and the meeting website seem to be one of our biggest hurdles. For the coming year the membership roster is to be published in the meeting booklet and a true membership count with appropriate categorization will be difficult because our membership roster is spread out over several databases. It seems that the members paying dues represent the most current membership roster active roster. The secretary needs personal access to all of the lists to perform a true reconciliation. Our new members need to be added to our membership dues list and a letter from the president to each announcing their acceptance into membership along with their certificate needs to sent out to each new member. The certificates were signed at the meeting and Dr. Jensen will prepare the cover letter. It was proposed the Spring Newsletter should be mailed out a month early in March to help keep us on schedule for the HI meeting. A list of new potential candidates was provided by Dr. Capanna with a request to the secretary that an invitation letter be prepared will to each with instructions on how to submit an application so these applicants can be included in the upcoming newsletter.
Report of the Website Administrator: Dr. MacDonald was not present but Dr. Day took the lead inviting recommendations on how to improve our web/database site. It was proposed that our current fractioned database using various programs such as Outlook for email, Word for the roster, Filemaker for our website, and Regonline for our meeting organization was likely not the best solution. A single website could probably be constructed to host all these functions and poll was taken from each member of the executive committee on what functions they required of the database to best do their job. A letter of proposal will then be written that can be used as a basis for obtaining quotes from commercial software companies looking for a better solution. It may be that our own website can be enhanced to incorporate these needs, or more Regonline tools be implemented, but a better solution might be affordable though a private company. We will then review proposed mockups submitted in response to our proposal at the upcoming business meeting in June. It was recognized that the look and feel of our current website is attractive, but it does not provide the executive team with the tools and access to the membership that each office needs to efficiently perform their duties. Dr. MacDonald called into the meeting and was given a brief overview of the proposal and stated that he is working to get the current website up and running for the upcoming meeting.
Report of the Historian: A request was brought forth to renew the tradition of publishing past presidents in the meeting booklet. It was decided to publish these in the coming year and on every even year along with the membership roster. The bylaws and past meeting sites will be published on odd years. The historian will continue to bring the photo album to each meeting because it receives so much attention by the membership. The book will be scanned into digital format for future years and we will host an electronic photo album and upcoming meetings so members can download photos directly on to the RMNS computer to be included in our archives and our electronic photo album. A new format for the album might be an iPad with a photo screen saver and archival folders for each meeting year.
Report of the Membership Committee: There were is one new application to review and three new potential inquiries to be addressed by the secretary. Those new potential members include Drs. William Smith, Ketih Blum and Gene Kawekin from Las Vegas, NV.
Report of the CME Chair: Dr. Deitze has been working diligently to make sure that we meet all ACCME (Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education) requirements to receive CME credits for the meeting. The appropriate disclosure forms will need to be provided on the website. The old forms are not acceptable. All speakers, moderators and executive committee members will need to submit disclosure forms. There will be a continued effort to categorize talks with respect to trauma to help fit CME requirements at trauma centers.
Report on 2012 Meeting: Dr. Stewart provided a detailed update on arrangements including number of rooms, room type, and complimentary rooms, Early arrangements are emphasized with our room block available for 3 days prior, and 3 days after the meeting to allow members to stay extra time in HI. We have 250 blocked rooms with cancellation on May 16, 2012. As anticipated, the meeting will be an expensive venue. All rooms will be suites, a considerable upgrade from the basic rooms. To qualify for free internet access everyone should join the Fairmount Presidents Club when they register. A link to this web site should be placed on the website registration. Rental car is recommended since airport taxis are expensive and car rentals from the hotels are charged a drop-off fee at the airport. Dr. Stewart will be taking the complimentary villa to use as the meeting headquarters. Breakfast tickets will be used to keep close tabs on breakfast costs. Meals for children are about half price. This year the projector cost is similar to purchasing our own and we have elected to have the venue provide it. After detailed discussion of moving the scientific sessions to the afternoon to allow more time for morning activities it was decided to keep the schedule the same. Diving and snorkeling will be best scheduled mornings before and after the formal meeting dates. There will be a Luau and the traditional banquet with buffet and entertainment. There is a beautiful golf course the green fees seem reasonable.
Annual Meeting Needs Assessment: A needs assessment for the annual meeting was reviewed by the executive committee, and the committee agreed on the need for continued annual meetings of the Society. The previous meeting needs were met and RMNS member evaluations and comments were taken into consideration in order to determine appropriate and timely topics for the future scientific program and gap. Guest speakers with expertise in the areas of interest to our society, and good presentation and communication skills will be chosen to help us meet our learning objectives and close the meeting educational gap.
Report on 2012 Meeting: Dr. Jensen is working on local arrangements for the 2012 meeting in Sun Valley. He completed his site visit and found the venue to be friendly and inviting. There are several flight options into Ketchum, ID with free transportation to the resort. There are many room options with flexible rates. 70 rooms reserved for a total of 280 room nights. There is a special wagon ride to gun range for shotgun target shooting that looked to be very appealing. Unfortunately the skating exposition will not be in season but there are many other opportunities for golfing, bike riding and hiking.
Future Meeting Sites: Future meeting sites were discussed and Dr. Michael Brown has begun investigating options for the 50th year celebration, 2015, in Colorado Springs, the society’s first ever meeting site. The Broadmore Hotel is expensive venue but was the meetings first original site and should be considered if a reasonable rate can be negotiated. An alternate site was discussed but had limited room availability of 50 rooms which would not satisfy our room needs. Dr. Lee Krauth as offered to be the meeting chairman for a meeting on Victoria Island. Final site selection will be determined in June based on a vote at the annual business meeting.
Old Business: The position of the Website Administrator remains in limbo as to whether a motion should be made to incorporate it into the bylaws and assign it a specific term. Further discussion postponed until our June meeting. In order to properly categorize our Senior membership birth year needs to be acquired from each member. We will add that to our database and registration at future meetings.
New Business: Neurosurgery Marketwatch is a newsletter that offered to run a story on our society. A copy of the newsletter was circulated and their request was approved. The historian will likely provide and interview to provide the background information necessary. Ipad raffle to be continued at future meetings based on its success and approval by ethics committees; see discussion above.
There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 1603 p.m.
Richard A. A. Day, MD, Secretary RMNS