KK: I’ve seen you do it successfully many times, and as much as I’d like to say that it is a learned skill, it can be refined, it is really part of your DNA. Note to the Toastmasters: it’s time to expand your membership to 14 years and older.
Explore This IssueACEP Now: Vol 34 – No 09 – September 2015
SS: When the Boros sisters came to my eighth grade, I said to them at the end, “This is fun. I wish I could do more.”
They said, “Well, you can. We’re going to have a District 10 conference, and the international president is coming as a guest to give us an award to recognize us. Why don’t you come along to tell us your story about what you learned?” Well, I sat at the head table and was talking with the international president, Helen Blanchard. I said, “Gosh, I wish I could do more,” and she said, “It’s funny you should say that. When I joined, the bylaws said that you had to be a man and women were not allowed, but the application didn’t have an area where you had to write your gender, so the club said, ‘We’d be happy to have you—just put your first initial.’” She signed up as H. Blanchard, and she was a woman in an organization that said you have to be a man.
She told me, “You know what? If it worked for me, our application doesn’t include a field for your date of birth. I don’t see why, if the chapter wants you, you don’t just sign up because it doesn’t ask you how old you are.” So when you talk about somebody who’s able to have an inspirational impact on someone who now uses those skills every day, you never know when you’re going to have a positive impact. I bet that woman would have been shocked to hear that I still know her name and tell that story.
KK: Well, she made quite a difference with that one piece of advice for you. It’s amazing. So in recap, you’re the first emergency physician to be the head of the AMA, you’re the second-youngest president of the AMA, and I will say now after hearing your story, you are the first rule breaker to be the president of the AMA.
SS: Don’t get me in trouble, but yeah.
- IHS Inc. The complexities of physician supply and demand: projections from 2013 to 2025. Association of American Medical Colleges. March 2015.