Message from the PAAO President

Jan 28, 2019 | eVision, From the PAAO President

Dr. Ferando ArevaloDear Friends,

As the year is getting started, we are looking ahead to many Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology (PAAO) exciting activities. We just came back from our leadership development course, the “PAAO Curso de Liderazgo”.  Education and training are the cornerstone for the Pan-American and we joined forces with the American Academy of Ophthalmology Leadership Development Program (AAO LDP), and the European Society of Ophthalmology (SOE) Leadership Development Programme (EuLDP) in San Francisco, California, January 18-20, 2019. It was an extraordinary event!

The PAAO’s Curso de Liderazgo was created to prepare future leaders at the national society level, subspecialty society level, and Pan-American level. The program combines elements of mentoring, organizational education, skills training and guided experiences while covering the philosophy, principles and practice of leadership. I would like to personally thank Dr. Zelia Correa and Dr. Peter Quiros, as well as Teresa Bradshaw and Terri Grassi, for coordinating a superb course with the AAO LDP and the EuLDP.

Left to right: Fernando Arevalo, Francisco Arnalach (Spain); Ximena Arze (Bolivia);

Claudia Acosta (Colombia); Carlos Wong (Peru); and Zelia Correa (USA), Curso Director

In 2018, PAAO asked ophthalmic societies to nominate an ophthalmologist who had demonstrated commitment to their organization, had potential for growth, and would likely serve in a leadership capacity to the nominating society and the PAAO. Many answered the call, and twenty ophthalmologists were selected from the Americas, the Caribbean and the Iberian Peninsula to participate in the 2018-2019 Curso de Liderazgo. During the work session weekend, participants heard from a wide array of speakers and participated in interactive workshops on association management and leadership topics, including communication, media relations, negotiating effectively, team building and running efficient meetings.

After a full weekend of Curso activities, I was blown away by the quality of the PAAO Curso and the participants. I now understand why so many of our national society presidents have been graduates from the PAAO Curso!

The New Year is always a fresh start full of promises. The future is great if we stick together as a Pan-American community! We are better and stronger by sharing our knowledge and experience.  Let’s meet again at our XXXIV Pan-American Congress of Ophthalmology in Cancun, Mexico in May! It’s at this meeting where Ophthalmology from all the Americas, and the world, come together to meet and you cannot miss that!

Happy New Year!

Dr. Fernando Arévalo
PAAO President