2018 President's Letter
Happy 2018! As we welcome in the New Year, we recognize that this is a dynamic and important time for ISV presenting a slew of novel challenges and opportunities for the vaccine field. Old paradigms are rapidly being reworked with virtually no area of vaccine research, vaccine development, clinical trials, vaccine deployment or policy left untouched. In just the last 6 years the EID outbreaks of MERS, Ebola, Zika, CHIKV as examples have underscored the importance of rapid vaccine development and deployment capabilities to meet EID challenges, as well as growing appreciation for creativity and flexibility in clinical trial design. Novel and important new partners have emerged in this space. The creation of CEPI (The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations) and the announcement of the new Gates Medical Research Institute underscore that new approaches for both old and new ID foes will be tackled with a focus on creativity and innovation that will challenge and influence the vaccine field in diverse ways. The footprint of vaccine research has increased. Concepts of how to apply vaccines as part of cancer treatment or as prevention of recurrence, are moving vaccines from being considered a secondary player in cancer clinical management to vaccine approaches gravitating towards becoming a central plank in the newest area of cancer therapy research. In 2018, the very definition of what is a vaccine and how vaccines are deployed in therapy and prevention continues to be refined.
It is important to consider as we face these opportunities that ISV has never been stronger and more capable of lending a hand. All members of ISV should be proud that the energy and accomplishments of our members and our leadership over the past few years have increased our voice, solidified our society and put us in a strong financial position. We are very much in debt to all of you who have brought us to where we are today. We are building from the excitement and accomplishment of the highly successful ISV 2017 meeting held in Paris last October. This meeting was organized in partnership with the Institute Pasteur, which provided the Institute itself as the historic backdrop for the many ISV sessions. ISV prides itself on serving as a society that lifts all boats in the vaccine space and the 2017 meeting displayed the vitality, and innovation and diversity of topics and exciting panel discussions, illustrative of the central tenets of ISV. We are excited to now move back across the ocean to Atlanta, which will be the site of the 2018 annual meeting. Once again local partners will play a major role the 2018 meeting. More information will be forthcoming on the ISV website and in the ISV newsletter so please stay tuned.
As we move into 2018, a new slate of elected ISV officers is firmly established. In addition to myself joining as President (I was lucky to have served in my training period as President-Elect under the incomparable Margaret Liu), Margaret now assumes the position of Past President We are fortunate that our constitution provides for ISV past presidents to continue to provide leadership and guidance to ISV in their position as an officer of the Board. We are excited that the incredibly energetic Ted Ross is now serving as President-Elect. He will be performing double duty as he will also be busy serving as Co-chair of this year’s ISV meeting in Atlanta. A mainstay and central pillar of the ISV, Shan Lu will be serving this year as our treasurer, continuing to provide leadership and his steady guidance as well as keeping his close eye on our finances. We are excited to complete our officer team with Denise Doolan serving as secretary. Denise was an outstanding dynamic leader and co-chair of the Paris meeting and now we are thrilled that she will also be performing double duty, serving with Ted as this Co-chair for the Atlanta meeting. The remaining of our new Executive Board leadership is groomed from 6 different countries representing four continents. These exceptional members will bring a new vitality and perspective to the ISV Executive Board are Maria Isaguliants, Ken Ishii, Linda Klavinskis, Odile LeRoy, Joon Haeng Rhee, and Anna-Lise Williamson.
As I begin my service as President, I believe it is important to keep in mind that it is the goal of the ISV as we step forward to address new opportunities and challenges that our overarching goals and focus remains the same. It is the goal of ISV to serve all of our members and to continue to build the society and continue to lift all boats in the vaccine oceans, lakes and ponds around the globe. In this regard we extend our hand encouraging all of our members to be energized to take an active role in this society, your society. Members having an interest in playing a role in society projects or having a suggestion for improvements or ideas or projects are encouraged to reach out to myself or our secretary, Denise Doolan for further discussion. We look forward to welcoming you as volunteers on ISV committees, or joining in ISV activities or working on creative new concepts for ISV. A list of ISV committees will be available on the ISV web site and in the future edition of ISV newsletters so please keep an eye out for these opportunities. The ISV looks forward with great expectation to working together to face the challenges of 2018.
With best New Year’s Wishes, David B. Weiner, President ISV