Gaurang Shah, MD, FACR

I am truly honored and humbled on becoming the President of Michigan Radiology Society (MRS). MRS is one of the pioneering state radiology societies of the country. It was founded in 1921 under the leadership of the legendary Preston Hickey, who was earlier one of the founders and President of American Roentgen Ray Society (ARRS) and also the Editor of American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR). Interestingly, our parent organization, the American College of Radiology (ACR) was founded in 1924.  We espouse the core values of leadership, integrity, quality and innovation integral to our specialty. Our core mission is to serve patients by empowering radiology professionals to advance the practice, science and profession of radiological care.

Thanks to our commitment to education, research, economic and advocacy, we are recognized as one of the largest and most active state chapters of the ACR. I am also fortunate to have a great team of competent and accomplished board of directors. We have planned a whole year of educational and professional events, starting with legislative day in Lansing in September. This event combines our mission of legislative activism and advocacy with academic education and includes visiting the legislators and having an extensive didactic and interactive academic educational activity.

This year we will start a new tradition by having a state conference that combines educational activities (with 10-12 level 1 CMEs) with fun and fellowship. This Upnorth conference in Traverse City on October 10-11 features academic radiology and oncology updates, talks on economics, advocacy and management, followed by evenings of fun-filled activities. It would be an excellent opportunity to bring families to scenic Traverse City for a weekend break, while sharpening academic acumen and create strategic vision for the state radiology. I am looking forward to a great gathering of state radiologists and radiation oncologists.

It is difficult to gaze in the crystal ball. However, the economic issues and legislative challenges are predicted be in the forefront in coming days for radiology. We should be proactive in anticipating those challenges and marshal our resources to rebuff them. This would require efforts and commitment from the whole radiology and radiation oncologist community. I urge all of you to establish a bridge and create relationship with your locally elected representatives so that we can engage them to protect our justifiable professional interest.

This year, we would have increasing focus on radiology residents and young and early career professionals, fostering increasing engagement and creating an environment that promotes mentoring. We would also try to reach out to various practicing radiology groups and departments and spread the message of professional camaraderie and unity. We would also strive to have closer ties amongst all the different radiology professionals and create a synergy that would work for a shared future.

The geographical distances within our state are huge-we are the largest state east of Mississippi in terms of land mass-but we all share a common identity as Michiganders. The image of two hands coming together to shake in friendship and camaraderie defines our state. Let’s live up to that image and work together for a common future.