The sunny skies of San Diego served as an invigorating backdrop for an abundance of excitement, ideas and expertise at SSO 2019. Leading the way for the success of this symposium were the dedicated members of the Scientific Program Committee (SPC) and the Annual Meeting Reimagination Task Force (RTF). The SPC ensured that the scientific program achieved its promise to deliver a diversity of expertise with over 560 oral, Poster and ePoster Abstracts. Presenters represented 21 different countries along with faculty and moderators from 11 countries. The RTF rolled out Phase I of their recommendations for enhancing the symposium with more networking opportunities, more interactive technology and other features to increase engagement and personal interactions, like the Human Library.
Outgoing SSO President, Armando E. Giuliano, MD delivered the Presidential Address, “Serendipity and Strategy on the Path of Progress,” during which he not only revealed the origin of the word serendipity, but also illustrated how serendipity, persistence, strategy and planning can lead to a meaningful journey. In addition, he reviewed the status of the Society’s strategic plan, introduced the new SSO brand and closed with the following statement, “Our Society has a vision for the future. Leading together we will achieve our mission to improve cancer care worldwide. Leading together we can create the future of surgical oncology.”
SSO recognized the achievements of several surgeon scientists as shown in the table below.
|The Charles M. Balch Distinguished Service Award||John L. Cameron, MD||Johns Hopkins University|
|Clinical Investigator Award||Ajay Maker, MD||University of Illinois Chicago|
|Young Investigator Award||Georgia Beasley, MD||Duke University|
|Best Clinical Research Paper||Syed Nabeel Zafar, MD, MPH||MD Anderson Cancer Center|
|Best Clinical Research Poster||Anita Mamtani, MD||Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center|
|Best Basic/Translational Research Poster||Annelies T. Hickerson, MD||Brooke Army Medical Center|
|Harvey Baker Traveling Fellow Award||Parisa Malekzadeh, MD||National Cancer Institute|
|Colorectal Cancer Research Scholar Award||Jenny Lazarus, MD||University of Michigan|
SSO welcomed more than 1800 attendees to the symposium with 26% attending for the first time. SSO also welcomed nine International Career Development Exchange recipients who in addition to attending SSO 2019, visited a U.S. based institution to observe procedures and enhance their knowledge.
Pictured seated left to right: Lillian Kumagai, MD, Brazilian Society of Surgical Oncology, Pabel Miranda, Sociedad Mexicana de Oncologia, and Tomoki Makino, MD, PhD, Japanese Society of Gastroenterological Surgery. Standing left to right: Sameer Gupta, MBBS, MS, MCh, via SSO Call for Applications, Anand Govindarajan, MD, Canadian Society of Surgical Oncology, Irfan Ul Islan Nasir, via SSO Call for Applications, Nishant Batta, MS, Indian Society of Surgical Oncology and Gabrielle van Ramshorst, MD, PhD, European Society of Surgical Oncology. Not pictured, Sung Uk Bae, MD, MS, Korean Society of Surgical Oncology.
David L. Bartlett, MD, SSO President, whose term began at the conclusion of SSO 2019 said, “SSO 2019 provided significant opportunities for colleagues from around the world to present the latest clinical data and make new connections. The Phase I enhancements introduced by the Reimagination Task Force had a positive impact on meeting experience and the implementation of Phase II recommendations during SSO 2020 will take the meeting to the next level.”
SSO 2019 attendees took to social media to share thoughts about the symposium. Below are just a few of the top tweets. Be sure to take a moment and read through various posts by searching #SSO2019.