On June 16, 2022, ConnAPA held the annual meeting at Fleming’s Steakhouse in West Hartford, thanks to a sponsorship by GSK. After an emotional and impactful talk by Ryan Hockensmith and his survival of meningococcemia, which led into a scientific discussion on meningitis B and the Bexsero vaccine, the business portion of the meeting was conducted.
President Johanna D’Addario first spoke about the highlights of this past year including legislative achievements, a very successful return of the Charter Oak Conference, communication and outreach growth, and thanked a number of individuals for all of their hard work this year. Such acknowledgements included the Board of Directors, Kirsten Longley and Mark Schuman of S&S Management, and departing long time Board members Deanna Zimkus, Andrew Turczak, and Jason Prevelige.
The committee chairs all provided reports. Treasurer Cayla Daniele reported on behalf of the Financial & Audit Review Committee that the Academy remains in a strong financial position, and weathered the pandemic very well. Linda Kowalski, ConnAPA’s lobbyist, reported on the legislative successes of this past year. Such successes included amending or passing multiple bills to ensure PA inclusion, including the ability to supervise medical assistants administering vaccinations, the ability to certify conditions eligible for Connecticut’s Medical Marijuana Program, inclusion in bills that ensure increased access to breast cancer detection and reproductive health services. Past President, and Constitution & Bylaws Committee Chair, Jason Prevelige, reported on the efforts of this past year to ensure that ConnAPA’s policy and governing documents meet the needs of the Academy and it’s members. Changes made this past year include gender neutrality of all language, ensuring diversity in Academy engagement, clarifying committee functions, and more. An item of action that he presented included changes to the bylaws to allow for increased participation on the Board of Directors by creating a formal President-Elect role that will be elected on a yearly basis (instead of a new President every two years), as well as clarifying the language used to assert that ConnAPA does not discriminate in granting membership. The motion for the bylaws change passed. Director at Large and Chair of the Conference Planning & Education Committee, Ashton Ogle, provided a report that spoke to the success of this years Charter Oak Conference, the recent PA-Student Day held at Sacred Heart University, and upcoming medical-legal webinars offered to ConnAPA members. On behalf of Sheree’ Piperidis, Chair of the Membership Committee, President D’Addario reported that the membership rolls remain steady, and with the growing number of PAs in Connecticut, everyone needs to do their part to bring in more membership. Nick Patino, provided the final two reports including an update from the Student Engagement Committee which spoke in more detail about the recent PA-Student day and plans for an upcoming Pre-PA Student Seminar, and also from the Communications & Outreach Committee where he highlighted the strong efforts and positive effect of the committee over this past year.
Immediate Past President Mark Turczak, as Chair of the Nominations & Elections Committee then presented the results of this year’s election. Elected by the membership to the position of Director at Large were:
- Alexis Cardinali
- Deb Cooke
- Sheyla Marranca
- Courtney Murray
- Adam Olsen
Additionally there was an uncontested re-election of Becky Calabrese to the position of Secretary and delegates for the AAPA House of Delegates in 2022-2023 include Johanna D’Addario, Adam Olsen, Sarah Adams, William Kohlhepp and Jason Prevelige.
No annual meeting would be complete without the recognition of ConnAPA members that have been influential and strong supporters of the organization. This year’s recipients were:
- Distinguished Merit Award: Bruce Fichandler
- President’s Award: Nicholas Patino
- Leadership Award: Adam Olsen
- Initiative Award: Becky Calabrese
- Service Award: Andrew Turczak
We hope to see you at next summer’s meeting!