I recall the design, development and implementation of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology. What sticks out in my mind are the personalities of highly motivated leaders and the fears and tribulations in starting a new venture. Through the years, the organization has been challenged, and indeed has made changes to accommodate the research trends and the wishes of the membership.
Initially, the goal of ARO was to establish an unfettered forum for individuals interested in research related to Otolaryngology. Early, there was a mix of researchers representing various clinical and basic science disciplines. Subsequently, the participants changed and the emphasis became clearly related to the ear. Many more Basic Scientists and Clinicians were added to the membership and today the organization can be proud to represent those interests that are on the forefront of investigations dealing with ear function and pathology.
As also originally designed, the Association of Research was to promote a means of social interaction. Indeed, it has done this by creating a relaxing, resort-background for the educational programs. The meetings have always served as a place where people could mingle, greet old friends and make new ones. This aspect of ARO has always been one of the most enjoyable benefits of belonging to the organization.
Robert H. Mathog, M.D.