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From the Executive Director:

I am delighted to send you SFP’s first electronic newsletter, designed to serve as a resource of information for our fellows and supporters. Since this is a project in development, I want to encourage you to offer feedback on information or topics that would be useful to you in your daily work. Enhancing SFP’s communications with our fellows is one aspect of our goal to increase the benefits of membership in the society.

In this issue:

SFP Board’s SWOT analysis and goals

The SFP board of directors and staff met in Chicago in January in order to convene the SFP board meeting. In addition, we rounded out the full day of meetings with group discussion designed to identify SFP’s current Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT analysis), and we established goals for 2009.

Traditionally, this meeting has been held by teleconference, but all agreed that it was important to prioritize and fund a face-to-face meeting, especially since 2008 was a year of significant transition for the society. I have posted the results of the strategic aspect of the meeting so you can get a sense of the results of our work. Please don’t hesitate to contact me should you have any questions or suggestions, or especially if you would like to volunteer to assist in committee work or if you would be interested in mentoring junior fellows as we develop that program.

Additional research funds available

Recently, the fellowship received an update from me on an increase in funds available for our 2009 RFP. We are thrilled that SFP will be able to fund more research proposals this year, and that we have established a specific set-aside for social science projects (see RFP guidelines). All SFP fellows, regardless of fellowship status are encouraged to apply, and we welcome collaborations on larger studies. If you need any assistance as you develop your proposal, feel free to contact Marlo Polonsky, SFP’s Grants Officer, for additional information or for assistance with your online submission.

Finding other fellows

Lastly, and especially for our newer fellows, I wanted to make you aware that when you log in via SFP’s web site, you can not only update your profile and contact information, you can also search for contact information for all SFP fellows or simply a specific fellow. For example, if you are junior faculty member and would like to reach out to other junior fellows, you can run an easy search that will provide you with a list of all SFP junior fellows. For more information on SFP’s online database or if you have forgotten your log in information, please contact Sarom Sot, SFP’s Administrative Coordinator.

Other news

  • We’ve posted information on NIH K grants and other funding opportunities on the SFP website. Email Marlo if you have any questions.
  • Reproductive Health ’09 is being held September 30 through October 3, 2009 at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel & Spa in Hollywood, California. Additional information is available on the Reproductive Health ’09 website. And if you have topics you’d like SFP to cover in pre-conference sessions, let me know. Also, make sure to mark these three events on your calendar for Thursday, October 1: the SFP awards presentation at 2-3 pm, the SFP reception for awardees at 6 pm, and the SFP annual dinner at 7 pm. And you’re the first to hear the announcement (which will soon be on our website) that Jacqui (Jacqueline) Darroch, PhD is the recipient of SFP’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and Joseph Speidel, MD, MPH will be awarded the Allan Rosenfield Award for Lifetime Contributions to International Family Planning
  • I expect you’ll be interested in this timely NY Times piece: “Harvard Medical School in Ethics Quandary.”

As always, I want to thank you for the essential work that you do to advance women’s health.

With warm regards,

Susan Higginbotham signature