From the President-Elect: April 2019
On the Road Again (apologies to Willie Nelson)
Eric Goldin, CHP, President-elect 2018–2019
"Are we flying on one of those planes?" That was the question my wife asked me as we are preparing for spring travel to visit local Health Physics Society (HPS) chapters. It turns out that, no, we have no flights scheduled on "that" aircraft. We do have a lot of travel ahead this spring—I've completed three chapter visits so far this year, have a relatively local chapter coming up (Northern California), and then hit the road for four visits in early April followed by three consecutive long-weekend trips. I completed 13 visits last fall and anticipate coming close to a total of 30 by the summer annual meeting in Orlando.
It has been a wonderful experience for me. I only hope that I can help stimulate some folks to participate both locally and in national HPS activities. Every chapter has unique characteristics—whether it's the predominant member focus (for instance academic, state regulators, government, or medicine) or the style of meeting (all-day event with vendor displays or an evening dinner session) or even the location (local university, restaurant, conference center). From my perspective, all have been great—seeing some folks I haven't in years, meeting new people, exchanging ideas, and learning new ways to look at problems and solutions. I'm certain the Society will benefit from these visits and that's why there is a budget line item to continue.
It has been a bit hectic, of course. The travel, followed by a few days of work, and then back to the airport, repeat, repeat—a little stressful after a while, especially since I am still working part-time and don't get paid while I'm away. I really feel for those who have managed to juggle this schedule with a full-time work commitment. Quite a testament to their employers and most likely, to their value to the organization.
One of the unanswered questions is, since we now have a two-year president term, every other year may not have a president-elect tour of the chapters. This could present a problem for some chapters since the president-elect visit is, on occasion, a draw for infrequent meetings. We haven't decided yet what will happen after the summer annual meeting. I don't really see packing luggage and trying to visit everyone all over again. Shoot, I have enough trouble developing one presentation, I can't imagine boring people a second time. However, any chapters that I haven't visited this year are welcome to contact me about a visit in the fall. And if your chapter does need assistance in some way, just let us know—the Society is ready and willing to help try to put together a meeting, find a speaker, whatever it takes to get folks involved.
If I haven't already been to your chapter, I hope to see you soon.