Bright Futures in Automotive Safety

AAAM has just completed some of the most challenging months in its history. As we visioned 2020 from Madrid, who could have dreamed that we would not meet in Portland, Oregon, and that our speakers would present from their own offices or that we would network on Zoom?

Your AAAM leadership has faced these challenges and met and exceeded them beyond anything we could have expected.

AAAM’s 64th Annual Conference was amazing with a record attendance of 225 persons from 15 countries. The Scientific Program Committee, with creativity, diligence and skilled support from Bostrom (our AAAM staff team), made it happen and we are extremely grateful.

The Student Symposium, attended by a record 91 people, was also a rousing success. We even found time for fun playing Bingo and Trivia!

AAAM Board of Directors met to consider in-depth some of the financial challenges the current circumstances impose and with the thoughtful wisdom of Treasurer Shayn Martin, we are prepared to make decisions to advance AAAM and our members in the months ahead.

The AAAM Special Interest Groups (SIGs) on Road Safety in Low- and Middle-Income Countries and Automated Vehicles are thriving and stimulated by the superb presentations given at the conference. In case you missed those, AAAM will be releasing the recordings at no cost. We are also excited to announce the new SIG: Global Child & Youth Road Safety. Watch for the first meeting to be scheduled soon.

As your first virtual President, I want to leave you with thoughts that continue to ring as memories of our 2020 keynote speaker David Harkey, president of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the Highway Loss Data Institute, urged us as technology advances to “buy the most safety you can afford.”

Memories also ring from Maria Segui-Gomez who in her keynote encouraged a paradigm shift to direct that safety be the first consideration in decision making. “We need to think of new ways to communicate that our road safety problem runs deeper than the depth of the iceberg. In the end, this opens the accountability discussion. More substantially, it opens a value discussion. What is at the heart of our transportation systems these days? Time? Economic profit? Shouldn´t we fight for safety being at the heart of the system instead?”

The inspiration I am confident everyone took from the days we spent together virtually shall guide us rapidly into the Second Decade of Action for Road Safety.

We surely hope that we will see everyone in Indianapolis, October 19-22, 2021 as AAAM continues to pave roads for a Bright Future in Automotive Safety.


Marilyn J. Bull, MD

AAAM President