Dr. Kevin Klauer on His Election to Council Speaker
By Kevin Klauer, DO, EJD, FACEP
I feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to serve our membership, chapter, and our Council as the ACEP Council Speaker. I owe the Ohio Chapter a huge debt of gratitude. Through the support of our Chapter, members, and Ohio colleagues, I was elected as Vice Speaker in 2011 and ran unopposed for the Speaker position this year. It has been, and will continue to be, a true honor to serve as a national ACEP leader from Ohio. The list of Ohio leaders whom have served as national ACEP leaders is impressive and distinguished; I'm humbled to be included among them.
Ohio ACEP has always been at the forefront of education, regulatory and legislative change, and member service. In many respects, our accomplishments may have even benefited other chapters. Our longstanding history of leadership lends credibility to anyone from Ohio aspiring to national ACEP leadership. We speak much of chapters and states. However, it is always of value to be mindful that, irrespective of geography, there is one specialty consistently influencing the delivery of health care for all patients: emergency medicine. There is one organization driving that agenda and one voice delivering our collective message. That organization is the American College of Emergency Physicians, and that voice is the familiar sound of our members.
Since graduating from my training program at Charity Hospital in New Orleans in 1996, I have been proud to be an Ohioan and serve our chapter. Through countless leadership development opportunities, the chapter has prepared me for my current role. The mentorship bench is fairly deep in Ohio. I remember my first handshake at my first meeting. I remember the location, the warmth, the sentiment, and encouragement. Mark DeBard extended his hand and welcomed me, not just to a meeting, but to a family, a lifestyle, and a commitment that I willingly accepted. Mark impacted my career, as he has so many others. The list of fringe benefits through ACEP leadership is countless, networking, dinners, really cool business cards... However, I never knew about the ACEP, friendly skies agreement. Unbeknownst to me, the Presidential seat on the Continental/United Airlines commuter aircraft flying from Cleveland to Dallas was 12A, the closest thing to first class on those flights (exit row, single seat side). While headed to a meeting at ACEP headquarters, I situated myself in my seat (12A available on the seating chart) with a cup of coffee and my laptop, when I heard a familiar voice, "I wondered who took my seat." I looked up to find a former ACEP President standing before me, my dear friend Nick Jouriles. I would have gladly relinquished my seat assignment (even if this wasn't the Cleveland Presidential seat) for Nick, but he never would have let me. Instead, he signaled that it was time for a changing of the guard. Another assignment I willingly accepted. Make no mistake, those peanuts taste surprisingly better in 12A than ever before. Nick has always been a wonderful friend and mentor and continues to encourage me. Nick, I promise to try and fill 12A with as much distinction and selfless services as my predecessor.
"Can you write?" Interestingly, my career has directed me to several editorial positions in emergency medicine. I was the first physician editor of the EM Resident, EMRA's publication. Later, I was the Editor in Chief for EP Monthly, which I recently relinquished answering the call to become the Medical Editor in Chief for ACEP Now. But, a little known fact is that directly after residency, I approached Larry Payne, then Ohio ACEP President, about becoming the editor of Ohio's Epic. "Can you write?" "Yes sir, I can and will do my best." Since no other member had served in that role prior to that time, I suspect Larry felt the risk was pretty low. Thank you Larry.
This is a wonderful chapter with so many wonderful friends and leaders with countless opportunities to become something more tomorrow then we were yesterday. I offer my heartfelt thanks to my friends and colleagues; I will do all that I can to earn your continued respect and friendship and repay my debt to Ohio.