Committees play an essential role in our efforts to make the College a strategic, adaptive, sustainable and data-driven organization. Through collaboration and teamwork, we are not only able to respond to emerging needs within our specialty, but also foster an environment where everyone has an opportunity to shape the future of the College.
When we set out to restructure the College’s governance under Vision 2020 (our transformative, five-year strategic plan that was implemented between 2015 and 2020), we wanted to be able to encourage involvement from members at every stage of their career. We made sure we had plenty of openings on our committees every year and that we were appointing a diverse group of members to serve the College.
We were also very intentional about creating pathways to leadership and strengthening our capacity to draw on the creativity and perspectives of members in early stages of their careers. We have increased committee participation of members aged 45 or younger from 29% in 2015 (before the launch of Vision 2020) to 50% in 2022; involvement by members who joined the College within the last 10 years rose from 38% to 54% in the same time period. In addition, more than 125 members aged 45 or younger (or in practice for 10 years or less) have participated in our Leadership Summit, which has been offered annually since 2017. About a quarter of our Leadership Summit participants have stepped up to lead our committees as chairs and vice chairs over the past seven years, with many being instrumental in driving our strategic initiatives, and another nine moving up to serve on the College’s board. Several participants have also served as track chairs on the Annual Meeting Program Committee. Kristin Sokol, MD, FACAAI (2020 participant) was recently elevated to the Committee’s vice chair position and co-leads the development of the 2023 program. Their involvement has given us fresh ideas for the program, including new, engaging and fun formats for learning.
If you are in an early stage of your career and/or are looking for more ways to give back to the specialty, committee work can be a great platform. It offers a valuable learning experience to help you grow as a leader and make meaningful contributions to the College and the A/I community. Read a few tips from ACAAI’s executive medical director, Todd Mahr, MD, FACAAI, and make sure you submit an application for any new committees you would like to join in November. But hurry, you only have until April 15 to apply!