May 9 found me in Durham, NC for a date with Durham Traffic Court the morning of the 10th. As you know, any excuse for meeting up with friends is kinda my life’s mission.
Notification was sent out to 63 people via Google calendar. 24 people opened the calendar invitation and responded with yes, no or maybe. I believe we had 13 attend. By the time we thought to take a picture, a few had already left. The location was Boxcar Bar & Arcade on Foster Street in Durham.
In attendance were: Don Alexander, Cynthia Edwards, David and Jaclyn Holland, Eric Nier, Gail Fowler, Kris Gustafson, Hillary Whittaker, Lauren Sherwood, Tim Sauls, Jeff Blum, Duncan Shaw and representing the PA Chapter, Vicky Martin.
On June 28, 2019 while attending the annual Drug Information Association (DIA) meeting in San Diego, FOCM was busy expanding its network. All new membership ceremonies are significant and strict adherence to protocol is (almost) always followed. This particular ceremony included a new addition to the protocol. FOCM is pleased to announce that Jodi Andrews, Founder and Co-CEO of Pro-Trials Research received her membership card.
This ceremony took place on the exhibit hall floor. What was added to the procedure for this ceremony was a shot of bourbon prior to the handshake, card presentation and photo. Later, a small pour of Fireball was distributed to the new member.
It was a typical Halloween Eve evening, weather-wise in Raleigh, North Carolina. It should come as no shock to anyone that it was also October 30. I’d rather hastily organized the 10/30 FOCM event just the day before as Brian Langin was coming to town. Brian has the distinction of receiving the first FOCM card ever handed out. So clearly, he was worthy of me getting people together.
Brian was first to arrive, followed by me and then surprise, surprise, surprise, Paula Brown Stafford joined us. Paula and I have known each other for 22 years when I first started in the clinical research industry working at Quintiles together. She has said to keep her on the FOCM event distribution lists as someday she just might surprise me and show up.
In what can only be described as one of the happiest moments of her life, Paula received her FOCM card.
It was a fun evening. Others in attendance: Rob Sucharski, Duncan Shaw, Peter Payne, Lauren Sherwood, Heather Malinowski*, Steve Young, Peter Weiman*.
On a warm, pleasant evening in October, the 1st day of the month to be precise, a significant event in FOCM history occurred; 4 new members received their cards.
I was in the RTP area to attend the Arena International Clinical Trial Supply Southeast meeting and hosted a FOCM networking event at the Sheraton Imperial Lobby Bar.
Attending that night were long time* members as well as first timers+. As best I can recall, the following people were there: Michael Williams*, Kris Gustafson*, Mike Burrows*, Rosina Pavia*, Paul Oldfield*, Tim Sauls*, David Holland, Carolyn Waff+, Lauren Sherwood, Israel Bocanegra+, Shae Wilkins* (traveled the farthest) .
Receiving their membership cards were: Lauren Sherwood, Carolyn Waff, David Holland and Israel Bocanegra. As you can expect, emotions ran high during the card ceremony, with many people wiping tears from their eyes. The look of sheer joy on their faces the moment they realized they’d completed the sometimes long, sometimes short, but neverthless arduous and rigorous initiation process.
LaunchBio (LaunchBio) holds events on the first Thursday of the month in Durham, NC. They are held in the Chesterfield Building in the downtown area. The building was formerly a cigarette manufacturing building. It has now been converted and there is incubator lab space for drug discovery and development.
It is a great opportunity for networking with people involved in the clinical research industry. Here I am enjoying a Durty Bull Lager beer and conversation with Peter Weiman and David Holland (they’re drinking the IPA that was being served).