07 December 2022

President's blog: June - December 2022

October 25, 2019 - 2022-11-24T103200.162-min.jpg

Dear PVRI members and friends around the world,

We are approaching the end of the year 2022, which was filled with sustaining drawbacks and most enriching events, challenges and new hope, farewell and welcoming. The subsequent retrospect can only address the most important topics.

We welcomed our new CEO, Karen Osborn

In August, we welcomed our new CEO Karen Osborn. Karen is an experienced charity CEO and loves the innovation, flexibility and responsiveness of the sector. Her most recent roles have been in the sight loss sector, and she joins us from Glaucoma UK, where she spent 6 years leading a period of successful growth.

We are convinced that Karen will successfully carry forward the projects and activities initiated by Stephanie. Moreover, her profound expertise in running charities will make new areas of development accessible for PVRI.   

We say good-bye to our Head of Digital, Aaron Shefras

It is with great regret that I announce that Aaron Shefras, our Head of Digital of eight years, will be leaving the PVRI at the end of January. Aaron joined us in February 2015 as the charity’s first Marketing Manager.

During his time at PVRI, Aaron has overseen many digital projects, including new website build integrating CMS and CRM systems and the development of an innovative, state of the art e-learning platform.

Aaron will be missed by all in the PVRI community, but we wish him the best of luck in his future endeavours.

Goodbye to Founder & Trustee, Stuart Rich

We are very sad to say goodbye to Stuart Rich who resigned from the Board this month to devote more time to his own business endeavours.

Stuart is a cardiologist and Professor Emeritus at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.

Stuart is widely recognised in the world of PVD, and has spent over 30 years dedicating his research and clinical efforts to finding solutions and therapies for pulmonary hypertension.

We are extremely grateful to Stuart for his dedication to PVRI for so many years. We would like to wish him all the very best for the future.

15th PVRI Annual World Congress on PVD in Athens, Greece

PVRI2022 Athens took place from Wednesday 22 June – Sunday 26 June 2022 and was attended by over 350 delegates from around the world, one of our most popular meetings to date.

A huge thank you everyone who attended and supported, for making this year's meeting a great success. We were delighted to see everybody in person once again after two years apart. Athens was an excellent meeting that featured the field's highest quality science.

We hope to see you all again at our next meeting in London.

On the final day of the meeting, we waved goodbye to our former CEO Stephanie Barwick. Stephanie joined us in April 2014 as the charity’s first CEO. In her eight years with us, her leadership and commitment transformed PVRI from a small founder-based charity to a prestigious organisation with a voice of authority and members across the globe.

Thank you Stephanie for all your work for us at PVRI, you will be missed by all.

Our next Annual World Congress

We are delighted to announce that our next Congress will be held in London from 31 January to 3 February 2024. Kurt Stenmark will be leading the PVRI2024 London agenda and Scientific Organising Committee. More details about the programme will follow soon.

Monthly digital webinars

Our monthly webinar series will soon begin again, lead by Patricia Thistlethwaite. We’d like to thank Patricia for her hard work on the programme so far. More details will be announced soon.

Global Health & GoDeep Registry

We continue to pursue our attempts to face the worldwide burden of pulmonary hypertension and right heart failure. Part of this strategy is the setting up of an in-depth worldwide meta-registry of pre-existent registries, PVRI GoDeep, and all registries around the globe are invited to participate.

As of November 2022, 20 centres from all over the globe have joined the GoDeep meta-registry, and negotiations are underway with another 20 centres. The common data set now comprises > 20,000 patients  and is steadily increasing. The basic structure of GoDeep has been published (Majeed et al, Pulm Circ. 2022 Jul 1;12(3):e12123), and several further publications are being prepared. All PH centres around the world are invited to join.

A final thank you to our contributors for all their hard work in the PH community this year. I now hand the baton over to our new president for 2023-2024, Kurt Stenmark. We are thrilled and thankful that Kurt accepted the presidency of this fascinating society!

Werner Seeger, PVRI President 2020-22

Welcome from Kurt Stenmark

Dear PVRI members and friends around the world,

I am pleased and honored to accept the invitation and the attendant responsibilities to lead this extraordinary organization. Werner, without a doubt, has done an exceptional job leading us through the past challenging 2-3 years. The pandemic put significant stress on both our personal and professional lives as well as on this organization. Yet, we have weathered the storm and will emerge even more vital. I say this because I was impressed with the energy, enthusiasm, new science, and sense of cooperation from all of our members, which I observed at the Athens International Conference.

As President, I am committed to keeping us on this upward trajectory by increasing our membership and clinical and scientific interactions with our members worldwide. As a pediatrician, I want to increase our focus on pulmonary vascular disease across the lifespan. I will work hard to support and encourage all the Task Forces to continue their excellent work and do everything I can to incorporate this energy and advancement of clinical and basic science into the overall program at the next meeting. I intend to continue diversifying the program by including speakers from whom we sometimes do not hear. I promise to do my best to be inclusive of both young and seasoned members of our pulmonary vascular community. I am dedicated to supporting our tremendous journal, Pulmonary Circulation, and committed to improving and better integrating the Innovative Drug Development Initiative (IDDI) into our community. I am very open to listening to ideas on how to better meet the needs of individuals in the greater PVRI community.

I look forward to the program we will create for our next meeting in late January 2024. I am delighted that we have gotten the program dates back to the traditional time of the year, which allows us to set our work apart from other major conferences.

I am indebted to the PVRI Board and all past Presidents of the PVRI. I have been fortunate to be a member of this community since its inception and have great admiration for everyone within the community. I pledge to do my best to continue its success as we explore new horizons.

Kurt Stenmark, PVRI President 2023-2024


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