Wednesday, June 15, 2011

President's Message: A Summer of Community

By Carl Hangee-Bauer, ND, LAc
AANP President

May was a wonderful month for the AANP and the naturopathic profession. Our annual Federal Legislative Initiative (aka the DC FLI) and our historic meeting with the AMA were significant successes. Thankfully, there has been a period of calm in my AANP duties before beginning to ramp up our summer activities, culminating with the ever-wonderful AANP Convention in August. It’s always good to have these more quiet times to reflect on all the trends and projects in progress, as well as take a few deep breaths. Having just returned from a Hawaii vacation, I feel refreshed and ready to focus on the next steps, and to see you all in August.

Summer is a season where we tend to get out more and be with others. The longer days and warmer weather foster opportunities like picnics, beach time, barbeques, and other activities that reinvigorate and deepen our connections with friends and family.

The naturopathic community reflects this greater seasonal trend. In early summer, the various elements of our profession begin to communicate more frequently as August approaches. Committees of both the Board and House of Delegates are meeting in preparation for the business of the convention. Our scientific community is busy preparing for the Naturopathic Research Summit on August 16. Students and NDs are preparing for the ZRT Cup.

At least as important as these formal relationships is the gathering of our tribe. This year we find ourselves back at the Biltmore in Phoenix, the most popular site for the AANP Convention, as well as at the East Coast remote convention site in Stamford, Connecticut. At both venues we will come together to learn new skills, find out what’s new in our field, be exposed to new products and diagnostic tools, have fun, and reconnect with our old friends and acquaintances. The latter is one of my favorite reasons for attending the convention. It is the one week each year that I can immerse myself in my profession and deepen my relationships with my colleagues. This always leaves me reinvigorated when I return to my practice.

Whether you are an AANP member or not (why not?), please join us at either site and experience the uniqueness of our community and the joys of being together.

A few reminders:

Vote! This year we are electing a new Treasurer to the board as well as three board positions. We have eight people running for these three positions so it will prove to be a competitive election. Packets containing candidate statements and other materials will be mailed to Members shortly. Voting will begin online on July 17 and continue into the Convention until August 19.

Nominate one of your colleagues for an award. The AANP is calling all of its members to nominate qualified candidates for the 2011 AANP Physician of the Year, Corporation of the Year, VIS, and New!!! Champion of Naturopathic Medicine Award (the "Champion Award"). This year's award recipients will be recognized at the closing banquet of the AANP's 26th Annual Convention and Exposition on Saturday, August 20, 2011, in Phoenix, AZ. All nominators and nominees must be members of the AANP in good standing. Click here to learn about the individual awards and download the nomination forms.

I am already thinking about who will get this year’s Presidents Award. So many deserving choices…

Our unity is our strength, and our community – represented by the AANP – is the vehicle we have to tell the wonderful story of naturopathic medicine. I invite all of you to help us build it even better. There is much to do. So, with all of the changes in health care, advances in medical knowledge and trends, and successes in our profession, the AANP Convention is the place to be to digest, absorb and grow – and connect.

I look forward to seeing you all there.

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