THE BY-LAWS of the American Academy of Pediatrics state that at the Annual Meeting, a "Presidential Address shall be delivered." Thus each President is given the privilege of stating his views concerning the Academy whether these views are directed toward the past, present or future, or possibly a summation of all.
Any organization is only as strong as its membership and the interest and participation of that membership in the current affairs and problems. Many times, I am sure, all of the State and District Chairmen have had this question asked of them: "What would I get out of being a member of the Academy?" My answer to this question would be: You get out of it almost exactly what you put into it. If you wish to belong to an organization just to have the privilege of saying you are a member, then, of course, you would realize little benefit from that organization. The so-called dead wood in any organization is usually made up of the free riders who do nothing except complain about what is being done or attempted. New and constructive ideas are the main stimulus of most any group but destructive criticism and non-participating members can hinder or at least lessen the progress. Therefore, if I could make but one plea to the membership of the American Academy of Pediatrics it would be to take an active part.
Possibly in order to help you decide to take an active part, it would not seem amiss to again remind you of what was stated originally on the purposes of the Academy and I quote directly from the Executive Board meeting in 1931:
Purposes of the Academy:
1. To create reciprocal and friendly relations with all professional and lay organizations that are interested in the health and protection of children.
2. To foster and encourage pediatric investigation both clinically and in the laboratory by individuals and groups.
- Copyright © 1959 by the American Academy of Pediatrics