By Cathleen P. Story, BS, CRA, FAHRA
Hello, AHRA friends. Welcome home to those of you that were lucky enough to attend the Annual Meeting in Orlando. I hope you came back with a few strategies to implement and the contact information of new friends.
Allow me to share part of an email that 2012 Education Foundation (EF) Chair, Ernie Cerdena, sent to his committee prior to the Annual Meeting that year:
Dear Committee Members,
I am very pleased to announce that we have received 86 gifts totaling $8,130 to date. In addition, we have also received an approximate $500-$1,000 from “verbal responses.” As you can see, we are getting close to our pre-meeting GOAL of $10,000. Let’s continue to make history.
Fast forward to 2018. This year’s committee raised $25,076 before the Annual Meeting, surpassing our pre-meeting goal of $25,000. We raised another $7,169 on-site, putting us over our $30,000 goal. Thank you all for your generous support of the EF. It’s amazing to see how much your support has grown over the years.
As usual, the design team put on a great meeting. There were a few EF events that stood out for me that I would like to tell you about:
- The EF Board of Directors voted unanimously to rename the CRA Exam Scholarship to the Kathryn Keeler Memorial Scholarship, in honor of the late CRA Coordinator, Kathryn Keeler. Kathryn worked primarily with the RACC, and her dedication allowed the CRA credential to grow and add value to the profession of radiology management.
- The Imaging Classic Golf Tournament was a big hit once again. I didn’t play this year, but I was able to spend the morning at the course talking with the participants and the sponsors to thank them for their support. More than $5,000 was raised for the EF, and the raffle winners also generously donated their winnings back to the EF. Thank you to Mark Suckle and Sarah Murray for planning and organizing the event, and to Harry Butler for capturing some great photos.
- Our first raffle drawing for a Hitachi toolkit was held after the keynote speaker address on Monday morning. Angie Bush, our immediate past president, and I had an awkward moment on stage when the winning ticket was drawn. The winner was Curt Bush, her husband! We could see him sitting in the front row, and how excited he was when his name was announced. Curt and Angie decided to “regift” the toolkit back so another member had the chance to win.
- I was able to speak with several of the EF scholarship winners throughout the week. Mycal King, an Osborn Scholarship recipient, was ecstatic to be in attendance. I asked him what his experience was like at the meeting and he replied, “This experience has far exceeded my expectations. The courses were fantastic and the keynote speakers were exceptional. However, the face-to-face interaction you get with your peers is unquantifiable.” When asked why he feels it’s important to support the EF, he answered, “I feel that contributions to the EF are critical to the growth of the association, as well as our profession. As a recipient of the Osborn Scholarship, I can honestly say that this experience has not only added more tools to my leadership toolbox, but more importantly, this opportunity is solely responsible for me already planning my trip to the 2019 Annual Meeting in Denver.” I am looking forward to “rocking out” with Mycal next year.
- The closing superhero-themed party didn’t disappoint. During the course of the evening, I was approached by an attendee with a challenge: If I would get on stage and announce that if 100 people got on the dance floor, a $500 anonymous donation would be made to the EF. The band graciously let me cut into their set to make the announcement, and the partygoers stormed the dance floor. What a great ending to a successful annual appeal campaign.
There are so many more special moments, but these are some of my favorites. I can’t wait to make more memories with you all next year in Denver.
Cathleen P. Story, BS, CRA, FAHRA is the 2018-2019 chair of the AHRA Education Foundation Board of Directors. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.