The End of a Journey

Posted by

By Penny Olivi, CRA, FAHRA 

August 2009 — I cannot believe I am writing my last Link article. It has been a wonderful year, the best year of my professional life. There are no words that can express how you feel at the end of this most amazing journey.

I’m proud of the work of the board, the committees, and the staff this year. So much happened; here are just a few of the highlights. Robbie Edge did a stellar job with the Curriculum Committee. The committee created a methodology around curriculum content and speaker evaluation. We are sure that our exemplary products like the Basic Leadership track and the CRA workshop will retain their superior content, with excellent AHRA leaders presenting. Deb Lopez, in her role as president-elect, worked diligently on the continuous updating of the policy and procedure manual for the board. Her tireless efforts have given us a document that reflects what we do and why we do it. This is such important work. At RSNA last November, we announced the winners of the AHRA & Toshiba Patient First Program, initiated by work completed in Jeff Palmucci’s presidential year. We look forward to hearing their success stories this fall. The fundraising efforts of the Education Foundation have continued, reaching out more to our members. This effort has culminated in the Commemorative Pin Campaign that will be kicked off in Las Vegas at our Annual Meeting. Link will also be getting a face lift around the time of the Annual Meeting, when it will be 100% electronically distributed. 

The significant issue, or mega-issue, of how we move to the next level of Web support for our members was illuminated in our strategic planning process. The strategic and operational work around this significant issue resulted in a totally revamped Web site. The roll out will coincide with the Annual Meeting. The online educational offerings will be enhanced and the overall usability of the sight improved. The board’s strategic process is alive and well. The directors are engaged and thoughtful. Jeff Palmucci and the Strategic Planning Committee of the board ensured that our trends and assumptions were relevant. Our strategic plan outlines where we are going; the yearly operational plan directs precious resources to the key programs our members have told us they want and need. The members can be comfortable knowing that the people they have elected to govern this association are passionate about ensuring that the mission of AHRA is met.

One of the new offerings at the Annual Meeting this year is the Practice Management track. Expanding our educational offering to include members who have practice oversight is important to me because of my dual role. At University of Maryland, I am responsible for both the hospital department and the physician practice. I will enjoy the opportunity to gain education for all aspects of my job at one meeting. 

I’m very excited to return to Las Vegas for the Annual Meeting this year. In 2001, when I was first elected to serve on the AHRA Board of Directors, the meeting was in Las Vegas. I feel that my AHRA life has come full circle. I’m excited to return to the Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, this time as your president. Life is a journey, not a destination, and this has been a great trip. I will continue my AHRA journey with whatever might come my way. Good bye to all of you, dear friends, and good luck to Deb as she starts the most amazing year of her life.

Penny’s Pointers – Live your life with joy. Express gratitude.

What is good in life and what is bad in life is all in our perception of the event. Nothing that happens to us, in and of itself, is good or bad. It is how we view it that gives the experience significance. There is an old Chinese story that goes something like this:

An old man and his adult son left their village to round up wild horses to use for themselves and to sell to others. They were successful in their quest and returned to the village with the horses. The villagers said, “This is a wonderful thing.” The man said, “Perhaps.”

The son was breaking the horses one day and fell and broke his leg. He was hurt badly and had to go to his bed for a long period of time while the bone healed. The villagers said, “This is a terrible thing.” The man said, “Perhaps.”

While the son was recuperating, some men from another village came into the village and conscripted all able-bodied men to come and fight with them as they captured other villages. The son was not taken by the men from the other village and stayed with his father in their village. The villagers said, “This is a wonderful thing.” The man said, “Perhaps.”

Life is good or bad based on your perception of it. Live your life with joy. Express gratitude for what you are given each and every day. Life is a wonderful journey.

 Penny Olivi, CRA, FAHRA is President of the 2008-2009 AHRA Board of Directors.  She is the senior administrator of radiology at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore, MD.  She can be reached at


  1. Penny,this, as are all of your writings is insightful and well written. You have done a wonderful job in keeping our organization vital and forward thinking. Thank you for all of your devotion and investment. AHRA was fortunate to have you as our leader this past year. Gordon

  2. Penny, I met you at my first AHRA meeting back in 2005. You impressed me by the sincerity in which you welcomed me as a first time attendee. Once again you impressed me at the 2009 annual meeting with the sincere and geniune passion you have for our profession. You have truly left your mark and I return home feeling truly inspired. Thank you for your leadership! Donna

  3. Penny – Congratulations on a purposeful year and wonderful culminating meeting. Now put your feet up and exhale!

  4. Penny- As always your writings are inspiring! I as many feel you made your mark as President of the AHRA and have given so much to OUR organization! Although this journey has concluded so you will start the next journey! I wish you the best and look forward to seeing you in the upcoming years! Thanks for all that you have done and your inspirations to me!


  5. Dear Penny, I’ve enjoyed your pointers all year and will miss them. However one of the best things about our AHRA is that we’re pals, and I can just go to the source at anytime and get all the “pointers” I need, and not only from you but from any colleague,(although they my not actually be called pointers!). I just wanted to comment on one of my take aways from your superb interactions at the meeting. One which I hope you don’t mind me trying to emulate. I was so pleased with your gracious hospitality and genuine engagement during the Past President’s reception, and then to read your point on comments regarding how valuable continued engagement from our past leaders is to our association. Thanks for speaking so well for all of us. To me you have always “said what you mean, and meant what you’ve said” so I’m trusting that you’ll take you own “advice” and stay very close to those you’ve been mentoring… and that would be all of us!! Thanks for your dedicated leadership (may it always continue) Hugs, Roland

Post a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s