President's Message – September 2022
Published on: 27-09-2022
Above: The Board meets at the 2022 Versailles meeting. Photo credit: Nikolas Lemos
I do hope that members who attended the recent TIAFT meeting in Versailles enjoyed not only the scientific content but the exceptional social program as well. Jean-Claude Alvarez and Amine Larabi as well as the whole team from SFTA should be congratulated for holding the first post pandemic in-person meeting for TIAFT since Birmingham 2019. It was quite an event!
There was much to celebrate at this meeting – not least the return of face-to-face interaction between TIAFT members and colleagues. There were more than 650 attendees from 54 different countries around the world. There were more than 100 oral presentations and numerous posters in an engaging scientific program.
Many awards were also presented at this meeting, and you will find details of all of those in this edition of the Bulletin. I must acknowledge the Alan Curry Award winner this year – Heesun Chung – and the TIAFT Achievement Award winner Andrea Steuer.
Heesun is known to all of us as a Past-President of TIAFT, and she does truly deserve her award for her lifetime contribution to analytical and forensic toxicology. Andrea has also contributed to our discipline and is a worthy recipient of the TIAFT Achievement Award for her outstanding scientific track record of a TIAFT member under 46 years of age.
From the Board’s perspective, we had a very successful two-day meeting prior to the annual meeting in Versailles. We had a very busy agenda and completed a number of outstanding action items as well as determined the first awardee of the Bryan S. Finkle Visiting Scientist Grant. As members can recall, the objective of this grant is to provide training for toxicologists in developing countries by experienced TIAFT members. We can report that we received thirty-two applications for trainees and ten for trainers. Seven pairs of trainers and trainees were selected and evaluated by the Board, and the successful applicants have been determined following an intensive review process: Atika Bendjamaa from Algeria as the trainee and Alberto Salomone from Italy as the trainer. This is an annual award generously provided by Bryan Finkle, and we will soon call for another round of applicants for the next Visiting Scientist Grant. As a side note, we also had 12 travel grants awarded to DCF (7) and standard (5) members to attend and present at the meeting in Versailles, and we look forward to hearing their stories in the Bulletin.
Above: The Regional Representatives meet at TIAFT 2022 in Versailles. Photo credit: Nikolas Lemos
We also had a very successful Regional Representatives (RR) meeting in Versailles and had many attendees from around the world. Please continue to engage with your RR as they do serve some very important functions for our association. We have recently refreshed some of our Regional Representatives and you will find all of their details on our website. I would like to pay tribute to longstanding RRs Vina Spiehler (USA) and Luis Ferrari (ARG) for their commitment to TIAFT over a long period of time – we can’t thank them enough for their terrific contribution.
Finally, we will celebrate the 60th anniversary of TIAFT on 21st April, 2023 in London. We are preparing a one-day program for those able to attend to mark this very momentous occasion. Updated information will be provided once we have finalized the program and venue.
Until then, take care and stay safe and listen to the ToxPod if you want to catch up on what happened in France!