Update from RESNA's President - June 2019

Can you believe it has been 40 years? RESNA has grown so much and we're excited to celebrate our accomplishments.

 

 

 

 

 

Dear RESNA members,

Summer is here… which means the annual RESNA conference is just around the corner! This year, RESNA teamed up with five other like-minded organizations for RehabWeek in Toronto, June 25 – 27.  Over 2,000 are expected at the Toronto Convention Centre, to experience 6 conferences in one. RESNA is offering over 30 workshops, scientific papers, the Student Design Challenge, and the Developer’s Showcase. In addition, the Colin McLaurin Lecture, RESNA’s honorary lecture, will be one of the plenary sessions. Dr. Geoff Fernie, a longtime RESNA member, Professor at the University of Toronto and Senior Scientist at Toronto Rehabilitation Institute-UHN, will be giving this year’s address.

If you’re coming to RehabWeek, please make sure you come to the RESNA Member Meeting on Tuesday, June 25, from 5:30pm to 7pm. We will have a cash bar, appetizers, and present RESNA's Awards. There will also be a short membership update with the latest news. See you there!

RESNA has had a very good year since we met last year in Washington, DC. The Fundamentals of Assistive Technology course is now available on-line and is going strong, ATP certification applications are increasing, and the AT Standards Board published a new volume of RESNA-WC Volume 3, for Wheelchair Seating. In addition, RESNA received a grant to hold a Fundamentals class in Ethiopia, and has been invited back to deliver it in Singapore this summer. The AT profession is growing all over the world, and our expertise and experience in North America is proving to be highly valued.

RESNA parted ways with Executive Director Michael Brogioli in October. Luckily, we were able to almost immediately engage Andrea Van Hook, a past RESNA employee who many of you will remember, as an interim Executive Director. This has allowed us to take the time to decide on our next steps. The RESNA board has seen this as an important inflection point in our history, and we’re grateful for the opportunity we have taken to explore and discuss options rather than rushing into an executive director search. We are focused on RESNA’s future and plan to have an announcement this summer about what that entails.  

And speaking of history, guess what –it’s our 40th Anniversary! RESNA was founded in 1979 in August 1979. Read more here. Can you believe it’s been 40 years?  It’s such a momentous accomplishment, we’re going to be celebrating our anniversary all year until our 2020 conference! Please keep an eye out for some fun facts, quizzes and historical tidbits that will begin to roll out soon. And, of course – 40th Anniversary SWAG! 

Thank you for your membership and participation in helping me lead for the next year. I hope to see you in Toronto! Please feel free to contact me directly any time, or leave a comment for me here.

Yours in assistive technology,

 

Mary Ellen Buning

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