As we wrap up this year and prepare for 2019, let’s reflect on AAAM and some of the accomplishments of 2018 and our direction for 2019.

The members and organization of AAAM are about affecting things – through the Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS), policy, science, dialogue, and now Special Interest Groups (SIGs). At our recognition dinner at this year’s meeting in Nashville, I quoted Winston Churchill who said, “things don’t happen to me, I happen to things!” Our goal for AAAM as an organization should be to take initiative and for our members and organization to ‘happen to things’!

The tide in transportation safety is shifting with the advent of automated vehicle technologies. At the same time, the developing world continues to be behind the curve in transportation safety.  The diverse membership of AAAM is uniquely suited to address the changing tide.

The Scientific Programming Committee, Abbreviated Injury Scale Committee supported by Bostrom, and Policy Committee have done great work over the past year.  You, our volunteer members make AAAM a thriving entity. I encourage every member to be a part of this movement to “affect things” by joining a committee and making the most of your membership. We, your board of directors and executive committee, are improving the focus, engagement, transparency, and coordination of AAAM.

Consider joining one of AAAM’s new Special Interest Groups. Two chairs have been appointed from an open call process distributed to members of each SIG. Aditya Belwaldi will serve as inaugural chair of the Automated Vehicles SIG and Brian Fildes will serve as chair of the Road Safety in Low- and Middle-Income Countries SIG. The SIGs will be responsible for engaging people with subject-specific interest who should be a part of the SIG and AAAM, working with our policy committee to create a position statement on behalf of AAAM and planning sessions at our next annual meeting or AAAM sponsored workshops.

2018 in the rear view

We had a great year! We had ten-year record attendance at our annual conference and a record number of abstracts presented. I encourage you to read my post-conference message for a recap of all the exciting initiatives and programs presented at the conference. We had the launch of three new webinars at no charge to members and launched the two aforementioned Special Interest Groups. We created a “cabinet” to improve inter-committee and organizational coordination. We reviewed and updated all position statements and are working on new ones for the spring/summer of 2019. We are incorporating best practices in our policies and procedures. Best of all, because of the efforts of all of you and of Bostrom, membership is on the rise in a significant way.

A preview of 2019

We plan to continue the webinar series with a fourth installment, issue new position statements and push forward with work plans for SIGs. We will host our 63rd annual conference in Madrid, Spain, October 15-18. I’m excited about the upcoming year and hope you are too!

As a final note, we have a couple of important end of year deadlines. Don’t forget to submit your full-length paper abstracts for consideration for the 63rd annual conference. Also, it’s renewal season and Bostrom will be reaching out to encourage on-time renewal. As mentioned above, we have some exciting plans for the new year and your participation contributed greatly to our success this year. I look forward to working with you all next year!