Lofty Goals at High Altitude: The Grover Conferences, 1984–2011

PVRI Member Authors: edward k weir, Stephen Archer

Abstract

The first Grover Conference was held at the Lost Valley Ranch Conference Center in Deckers, Colorado, in 1984. Both the concept of the conference and the choice of the site were initiatives of John T. “Jack” Reeves MD (Fig. 1). At the time, there was no major conference dedicated to pulmonary circulation or pulmonary hypertension and a PubMed search for articles with the following key words detected 900 publications/year with those keywords in their title (Fig. 2). Although the biannual Grover Conferences cannot take all the credit for this new interest in lung circulation, they have certainly contributed. The impact of the conference has been enhanced by the careful selection of new topics that are identified as areas of emerging opportunity (Table 1). Thus, new science is always on the “menu.” Moreover, the invitation of scientists to a ranch that is literally in a “Lost Valley,” with only a pay phone for communication with the outside world, has meant that these established and emerging scientific leaders are fully engaged. In addition, enduring camaraderie is derived from sharing cabins and enduring the terror of novices on horseback. The hypoxic majesty of the Pike National Forest at elevations of >7000 feet focuses the mind on hypoxia (especially as one pants up the inclines to cabins with names like “Huff n Puff”). A remarkable transformation of the intellectual elite occurs when they are wrapped in denim and plaid giving a talk using a fishing pole as a pointer. If that did not generate sufficient humility, Jack Reeves was ever ready with a deceptively simple question that would humble the arrogant and point out the need for more research.

Published in:

Pulmonary Circulation Vol 1: No 4 cover image

December 2011

Pulmonary Circulation Vol 1: No 4

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