Trustees Meeting 2017

19. July 2017

The annual AO Trustees Meeting 2017 took place in Miami Beach, Florida, US from July 6-9

Opening by Klaus RennerOpening by Klaus Renner

The Trustees Meeting scientific program began with a welcome to the event from the President of the AO Foundation Nikolaus Renner who explained why he chose Miami Beach as a location for his first AO Trustees Meeting as President and why the Eden Roc hotel in particular. This was followed by a fascinating welcome to Miami from the local Trustee Jorge Alonso who gave an illuminating insight from a personal perspective into the Cuban influence on the city and its evolution. The many highlights of the three day event included a highly-relevant and inspiring keynote speech on the morning of first day by Ritesh Patel (‎Chief Digital Officer, WPP Health & Wellness) on the impact of connected health on the delivery of healthcare in the 21st century. The topic of digital developments in the healthcare industry and the fascinating case studies that Patel shared with resonated strongly with the audience and set the tone for the rest of the scientific program.

The second half of the morning began with a presentation from one of the AO Foundation's founding members Thomas Rüedi celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the birth of AO Founder Martin Allgöwer. The rest of the morning session was dedicated to updates on various AO projects ranging from AOPOC, to SYNBONE to the AO Soft Tissue Initiative. Of particular relevance, building on the presentation by Patel, was a demonstration of the Touch Surgery Surgical Simulator by AO Trustee Daniel Buchbinder in his capacity as a member of the Board of Directors of AO Invest. AO Invest is an investment fund for start-ups run by a board of medical and business experts in which the AO Foundation is its sole investor. The President-Elect Robert McGuire and the Past-President Paul Manson gave the Trustees an update on the AORecon and AONeuro initiatives in particular describing the support for AONeuro from the AO Foundation for transitioning into a new organization in 2018.

The Trustees took care of their important business of governance (finances, discharge of the AOFB, appointment of auditors etc) during their Annual Meeting in the afternoon of day one. Of particular importance was the majority vote for the proposed changes to the bylaws which effect the composition the Board of Trustees. It was decided that the overall number of ordinary members be reduced to 100 and that the criteria for becoming an Honorary Member be stricter and better defined going forward. This is the culmination of two years' work on an initiative that emerged from the Trustees Meeting Review session conducted during the Trustees Meeting 2015 in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

On day two of the program the Trustees spent the morning listening to updates on the important work and on-going projects of each of the AO Institutes, the AO Strategy Fund and the latest AO innovation initiative the AO Development Incubator which launched earlier this year. A passionate presentation from a member of the Sesame Street Workshop partnership with the AO Strategy Fund on a childhood injury prevention initiative in Bangladesh, using much loved muppet characters, captured the hearts and minds of the Trustees. Sabine Girod, a CMF surgeon who is Editor-in-Chief of the AOCMF web editorial board, gave the audience a glimpse into the future of the AO's online presence which AOCMF is piloting in the coming months. And finally AOVET shared their insights into the important evolving role the AO is playing in improving the quality and relevance of preclinical animal studies.

The afternoon was spent in breakout sessions to review the Davos Courses and the direction setting from the Trustees was clearly that the AO needed to keep its flagship educational event in Davos in December. The afternoon concluded with an animated presentation from AO North America (AONA) President Jim Stannard celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the establishment of AONA.

On the final day the Trustees spent the morning attending parallel breakout sessions focused on each of their clinical divisions. Nikolaus Renner closed the Trustees Meeting 2017 with a summing up of the highlights of the three day scientific program. In particular he thanked the Trustees for their commitment and participation in the important decision making and direction setting that took place. The event closed with the announcement of the next AO Trustees Meeting July 12-14, 2018 in the President's home town of Basel, Switzerland.​​


Icon Thomas Rüedi, Assembly of Trustees Meeting, Miami 2017
Icon Jaime Quintero discharging the AOFB at the Annual Meeting.
Icon Ritesh Patel giving a keynote lecture on the impact of connected health on the delivery of healthcare in the 21st century.
Icon Assembly of Trustees Meeting, Miami 2017
Icon James P Stannard, AO North America is celebrating the 25 anniversary.
Icon Assembly of Trustees Meeting, Miami 2017