Time-Honored Tradition of Convocation Celebrates Transition, Renewal

Cardiology Magazine ImageClick image for a larger view. PHOTO CREDIT: ©American College of Cardiology/Todd Buchanan and Max Gersh

The time-honored tradition of Convocation was a fitting close to ACC.18 in Orlando. After three days of cutting-edge research, interactive education and lots of innovation, this year’s ceremony capped the meeting with a focus on tradition, celebration, transition and renewal.

Presided over by outgoing ACC President Mary Norine Walsh, MD, FACC, the Convocation Ceremony ushered in nearly 250 new ACC Fellows and Associates from around the world.

“By pursuing the designation of AACC and FACC you have signaled your interest in engaging with the American College of Cardiology in a new role and with a new level of involvement,” Walsh told the crowd. “Many of you here today have been ACC members for many years, some as Fellow-in-Training members, some as Cardiovascular Team members, some as Associate members. But today you have chosen to take that membership up a notch signaling that you want to play a more integral part in the mission and activities of the College. I welcome your interest and involvement.”

In addition, to welcoming new FACCs and AACCs, the evening also recognized the many achievements of the ACC’s Distinguished Awards winners, as well as the ACC/Merck Research Fellowships, the ACC/William F. Keating, Esq. Endowment Career Development Award, ACC Presidential Career Development Award, the William W. Parmley Young Author Awards for the Journal of the American College of Cardiology (JACC), the Young Author Achievement Awards for JACC journals, and the ACC Young Investigator Awards. The ACC’s newest Leadership Academy graduates were also honored. Launched in 2014, Leadership Academy provides Early Career and Fellow in Training members with peer-to-peer leadership training and mentoring. This year’s cohort includes 16 participants.

The evening also celebrated the transition of ACC leadership. Walsh passed the presidential chain to C. Michael Valentine, MD, FACC, an interventional cardiologist at Centra Health in Lynchburg, VA, who has served in many ACC leadership roles over the course of his career.

In her presidential remarks, Walsh looked back on the past year – one she noted was “pivotal” for the College. She highlighted the work involved in the ACC’s next Strategic Plan, the transformation of the College’s governance structure, and the debut of a new vision and core values that will guide the College and its members into the future. She also noted the important collaborations between the College and other cardiovascular societies around the world and applauded the number of women leaders in the profession. “This has truly been the Year of the Woman in Cardiology,” she said. “It is my hope that some of you newly minted women FACCs and AACCs will set your cap for similar leadership roles and follow in the footsteps of these talented leaders.”

Walsh closed her remarks by thanking her many colleagues, ACC leaders, staff, friends and family who were a part of her presidential year. “This has been an extraordinary year for me personally. I have had opportunities and experiences that have shaped me as a person, a clinician, a scientist and an educator. And I have many people to thank for their contributions,” she said.

Valentine closed out Convocation with a clear charge for new FACCs and AACCs to honor the traditions of the College, celebrate their own success and the hard work, passion and dedication that brought them to today, and acknowledge the challenges and transitions that make up the fabric of today’s health care environment. More importantly, he urged everyone leaders, new fellows and associates, to renew their commitment to the profession and come together to make the College’s vision a reality. “So “Convocation, the word, derives from the Latin convocare, which means to come together,” he said. “Given that we live in a world, country — and even specialty — that is often divided, times like this are crucial for reminding us of all the reasons we should — and MUST — come together.”

He added: “Let us go forth tonight and celebrate together what may truly be just the beginning of the Golden Age of Cardiology.”

ACC.18 Convocation in Pictures

Click the thumbnails below for a larger view.

Keywords: ACC Publications, ACC Scientific Session Newspaper, ACC Annual Scientific Session

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