Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of the International Society of Urological Pathologists held at Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center Hemisfair A, San Antonio, Texas, USA on Saturday 4 March, 2017, at 6:20 pm to 6:55 pm
Present: Prof. Lars Egevad (President), Prof. John Cheville (President-Elect), Prof. Hemamali Samaratunga (Secretary), Prof. Ming Zhou (Treasurer), and 130 other members of the Society.
- Call to order
The President, Lars Egevad called the meeting to order and welcomed the participants.
Apologies for unavoidable absence received from David Bostwick, Brett Delahunt, Warwick Delprado, Rainer Grobholz, Josep Lloreta-Trull, Chin-Chen Pan, Victor Reuter and Robin Vollmer.
- Minutes of previous meetings
The minutes of the previous AGM held in Seattle on 12 March 2016
were circulated to all members and are available on the website. These were taken as read and approved. JRS/DJG
4.1: Report of the President
The President noted that the Society has grown considerably within the past 10 years. In 2005, when he was Secretary of the Society, there were 102 members and in 2015, it had increased to 611 members. Within the last two years these numbers have doubled and now there are approximately 1200 members. Some years ago, two thirds of the members were from North America. Now we are a very international Society with members from 73 countries from 6 continents.
A major reason for the increased membership is the new website which has facilitated applying for membership. Sean Williamson has recently been appointed as webmaster. There have been 8600 unique visitors to the website and 147000 page views with tracking curves demonstrating that activity and interest are increasing. People from 126 countries, including remote areas such as Panama, Kurdistan, Morocco, Mongolia, Senegal and Uzbekistan, have visited the ISUP website. Funding for the website was arranged by the president through external grants and so far approximately USD 50,000 had been expended.
The case of the month (COTM) function of the website is running smoothly under the Editorship of Dr Andy Evans. Advertising of new cases to the membership has increased interest as shown by the tracking curves for the COTM. Digitized slides are also available and have been provided by Zoya Volanskaya, Director of Informatics at the University of Toronto. She has negotiated with Simagis Live for free access to their server, which will initially be for one year. Subsequently, they have decided to maintain this at no cost for the time being. In appreciation she has been awarded a certificate of appreciation. A panel of 24 ISUP members was set up to contribute cases although anyone with interesting cases should contact Andy Evans and discuss the possibility of contributing. In addition to the Editorial role of Dr Evans, a group of reviewers (James Kench, Jesse McKenney, Chin-Chen Pan, Murali Varma) have been appointed who will assist with case selection.
Other benefits of the website include the publication of a Member Directory, and Upcoming Events Calendar. The ISUP Pathology Imagebase is another useful educational resource available on the website. Members may download images for their presentations as long as the ISUP Imagebase is acknowledged. At the moment there are more than 300 consensus cases from 5 projects. The President thanked the expert panel for their contributions to the establishment of the Imagebase. In addition to the current image sets there are plans to add other projects such as staging and margin status etc. to the Imagebase. A free version with fewer cases and no search functions is available to non-members who can access without logging in. This should be particularly helpful for pathologists from developing countries who cannot afford to pay membership fees and general pathologists who may not want to join a subspecialty Society.
The ISUP education web is a web-based tool for testing and training in GU pathology. Currently, diagnosis and grading of prostate cancer projects are available on this site. The President travelled extensively this year lecturing in many countries including third world countries and this was funded by grants from the Cancer Society of Stockholm. The web-based program has proved to be very helpful in assessing the standard of reporting before and after delivery of the lectures. The improvement in diagnostic standard was found to be most significant in low-resource countries. These results suggest that the project has fulfilled the aim of improving diagnostics skills of pathologists which are likely to impact on healthcare internationally.
Meetings held during 2016 involving the ISUP include the USCAP meeting in Seattle where the Imagebase Meeting was held and the ESP/IAP meeting in Cologne. A number of publications have arisen from the recent activities of the Society including, to date, three from the 2015 Penile and Testicular consultation. A fourth publication is pending. The ICCR project aimed to set up minimum datasets for reporting urological pathology. Twelve datasets have been finalised and once formal approval is obtained, these will be published on the ISUP website.
The report from the Constitution and Bylaws Committee is now completed. This Committee was chaired by Christina Magi-Galluzzi and consisted of eight members, including representatives of the Council and members at large (John Eble, Lars Egevad, David Grignon, Peter Humphrey, James Kench, Glen Kristiansen, Christina Magi-Galluzzi, Hemamali Samaratunga). The new Constitution and Bylaws have been finalized and approved by the Council. This will be put up for electronic voting to the whole membership, which in accordance with the Constitution of the Society will last for 60 days.
The current ISUP meeting is a special one marking the 25th anniversary of the Society. The President thanked Hema Samaratunga for funding the reception for two consecutive years and Dr Robert Young for delivering an excellent Silver Jubilee oration. ISUP Jubilee medals depicting Donald Gleason’s portrait on the obverse have been distributed to members. An ISUP Jubilee lecturer has also been appointed. The Annual Grawitz Dinner will be held on Monday the 6th March. Plans for 2017 and 2018 include a continuation of the Imagebase program with new projects and further develop the ISUP Website. The Society is also going to enter the era of social media.
4.2: Annual Report of the Secretary
The Secretary noted that the past year was another outstanding period for the Society, with continuation of many of the activities initiated in 2015. The President, Lars Egevad and the members of the Council worked tirelessly for the advancement of the Society through the promotion of its many activities. The Imagebase has become a wonderful resource that is available to all members. Now the Public Section is viewed by non-members throughout the world. The case of the month function is working smoothly and we are grateful to Andy Evans and his team for this. This educational material is particularly useful for Trainees and Fellows. We now have approximately 1200 members from all over the world with two thirds domiciled outside of the United States.
The Website in general is working well although some members are still having problem with access and the payment of dues. The most common recurring problem is members changing their email addresses. The Secretary emphasized that if members change their e-mail addresses this must be communicated to the Treasurer so that the database may be suitable amended. The Society has been at the forefront of advancing science and promoting educational activities in GU pathology, mainly in the form of consensus conferences. This year the President and a number of the Officers have been travelling the world, including third world countries, promoting the Society and detailing conference outcomes. This has undoubtedly contributed to the spectacular increase in membership and has been accomplished without any call on Society funds.
Considerable preparation has gone into the organization of the various Society-related meetings held in conjunction with the USCAP Annual Scientific Meeting. Being the Silver Jubilee of the Society, special activities were warranted. The Secretary thanked Professors Delahunt and Srigley, who devised the Jubilee program. She also thanked Dr Young for his outstanding oration highlighting the history of GU pathology. Finally, on behalf of all the members, The Secretary thanked Prof. Egevad for his enormous contribution as President over the past two years. We look forward to his further contributions as Immediate Past President.
4.3 Report of the Treasurer
The Treasurer informed that the ISUP was in good financial standing. Membership dues for 3 years are currently USD100 for regular members and USD50 for members from low-resource countries. In the last year, membership has increased significantly and the dues collected were close to USD30,000. Prof. Samaratunga contributed USD12,000 in funding the reception. Expenses last year amounted to about USD21,000. This was spent entirely on member activities. For example, USD6,500 was spent on food and beverages at the Imagebase meeting. The surplus last year was USD2,800. Currently the ISUP has close to USD41,000 in the bank account. Members were encouraged to pay membership dues promptly.
- Stipends and Awards
The President acknowledged the contribution of the Chair of the Awards Committee, Adeboye Osunkoya and Travel Stipends Committee, Samson Fine and the judges.
The ISUP Excellence in Urological Pathology Awards Committee was chaired by Adeboye Osunkoya with Co-Chairs Ondřej Hes and Glen Kristiansen.
Awards for 2017 went to Sounak Gupta, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Aseeb Rehman, Albany Medical College, Albany, NY and Aylin Sar, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Sampson Fine chaired the Stipends Committee. Rohit Mehra, Priya Rao and Hikmat Al-Ahmadie served as judges for awarding the Stipends. There were 44 applicants. Anna Calio, University of Verona, Italy, Julien Dagher, Rennes University Medical School, France, Faruk Skenderi, University of Sarajevo Medical Center, Bosnia and Sun Tong, University of Massachusetts, USA were awarded stipends of $500 each.
- Election of ISUP Officers for 2017-2019
Prof. Egevad noted that this was the end of his term as President and thanked the members for their support. The Nominating Committee consisting of 5 Presidents and Past Presidents had unanimously presented the proposed officers for election by the meeting. President Elect, John Cheville will automatically become President. It was proposed that the new President Elect be Lawrence True. It was also proposed that the Secretary Hema Samaratunga and Treasurer Ming Zhou be re-elected. Special Councillors Prof. Delahunt and Prof. Srigley have retired from the Council. The President thanked them for their immense contributions to the Society over a long period of time. Dr Humphrey will also leave as Immediate Past President. The Five International Councillors, Glen Kristiansen (Europe), Katia Leite (South America), James Kench (Autralasia), Chin-Chen Pan (Asia) and Andy Evans (North America) will continue for another term. Motion of approval was given by David Grignon and seconded by John Srigley. This was carried unanimously by the meeting
- New Business:
George Netto asked how the President Elect was selected. The President reiterated that it was by the Nominating Committee, in accordance with the current Constitution and Bylaws. There is also an opportunity for members to nominate other candidates for any of the Officers in accordance with the Constitution and By-laws, which are available on the website. No nominations had been received before the commencement of the meeting. Samson Fine commented that changes to the Constitution and Bylaws should be up for comment by the members before voting on it. The President commented that the amendments had been recommended by the Constitution and By-laws Committee and had been approved by the Council members. In accordance with the Constitution, the minutes will be circulated for 60 days following which there will be formal electronic voting available to all members. Dr Fine also suggested that he the Stipend be increased; however, the President stated that this would require a resolution by the Council and could not be actioned this year.
The meeting adjourned at 16:55 p.m.