It is with great excitement and enthusiasm that I welcome you to Charleston for the 2016 Annual Meeting of ISSWSH. Our host city is one known for being deeply rooted and honoring of tradition while actively embracing the future and being open to change. Similarly, this year’s scientific program addresses many age-old questions in contemporary ways, with familiar faces and voices intermingling with fresh ideas and with sexual health professionals who are new to our organization.
Carrying forward the success of last year’s inaugural Master Journal Club, we have a fantastic group of internationally known faculty who will share with us a topic based on others’ research that is a “must read” for the rest of us. Our symposia will address important topics such as aging, (in)continence, pregnancy, reproduction, and mate choice with ground-breaking research and interdisciplinary perspectives (e.g., psychology, medicine, physical therapy, education). We will also have opportunities to consider sexual desire, arousal, and satisfaction in new ways that just might affect your research or practice.
As our society has grown, we will have representation on the podium from not one but three sexual medicine journals: the Journal of Sexual Medicine, Sexual Medicine Reviews, and Sexual Medicine – Open Access. Our program is the result of the efforts of a large scientific program committee who shared their ideas as early as the previous year at the Austin meeting, when we got together early one morning in our excitement about that conference, ready to look forward to the next.
I’d like to thank the ISSWSH Board of Directors for their unwavering support and freedom in creating this year’s program, Status Plus for their (unparalleled) administrative assistance and their solid experience with conference planning, and Sharon Parish and Sue Goldstein for being so actively and generously involved in the work of our committee. Importantly, please join me in thanking the members of the Scientific Program Committee who enthusiastically accepted the tasks of sharing ideas for speakers and podium topics, for making connections with colleagues, for reviewing abstracts and papers, and for moderating the many excellent sessions throughout the annual meeting. I’d like to give a special thanks to returning members, to those who have brought students or colleagues into the fold, and to those of you who have returned to ISSWSH if it’s been a few years. Also, I particularly want to welcome those of you who are new to ISSWSH. Each year, it is heartening to meet so many people who are transitioning into sexual medicine, or who are coming to ISSWSH to gain new insights or educations that might inform their practice.
Finally, I very much look forward to your active engagement in conference sessions. I encourage you to make every effort to attend this year’s meeting and to make use of your time at the conference: please do ask questions of speakers, share your opinions and ideas, get together with old friends and colleagues, and connect with those who are new to ISSWSH.
Debby Herbenick, PhD