I have had the extreme fortune to be able to attend almost every PRIM&R IACUC Conference since 2004. When I started attending, I was serving as an IACUC member, and I found that IACUC Conference speakers and attendees had a wealth of information to share. Little did I know that IACUC administration would become a cornerstone of my career, as I later found myself managing an IACUC (as well as other components of research administration) for a large academic medical center and serving as President of the American College of Animal Welfare.
At the time I started attending, the IACUC Conference rotated between venues in Boston and San Diego. Over time, new cities and venues were added into the rotation. What never changed, however, was the quality programming and amazing networking opportunities.
Even amid the COVID-19 pandemic, PRIM&R has hosted two successful virtual conferences and was able to play a vital role in ongoing discussions within the community through webinars, networking events, and informational updates. Now, as we look forward to the end of the pandemic, PRIM&R is leading us through another transition for the IACUC community.
In 2022, instead of the annual IACUC Conference that we look forward to each Spring, we will have something new to anticipate in the Fall: the PRIM&R Annual Conference, which will encompass IACUC and animal research topics and so much more.
PRIM&R’s membership and conference audience is not exclusive to IACUC administration and laboratory animal science professionals—their human subjects protections community attends the Advancing Ethical Research Conference each year. Topics like conflict of interest, export control, inappropriate foreign influence in research, biospecimens, and stem cell research oversight are increasingly finding a place in animal research oversight discussions, and PRIM&R is poised to be the hub for these important conversations. Rest assured, IACUC-specific programming and networking will not be lost with this new conference.
Admittedly, I am sad to say goodbye to PRIM&R’s IACUC Conference, and I know that some of you will feel nostalgic about our many collective experiences at this wonderful meeting for years to come. But, while we have 18 months before we see each other again, I urge you to keep an open mind and be on the lookout for the exciting developments to come.
We already know that PRIM&R leads the way in providing top-notch educational opportunities for research ethics and animal research oversight; with the PRIM&R Annual Conference in 2022, we will have the opportunity to experience the full breadth of PRIM&R’s offerings and interact with many new colleagues. I’m excited, and I hope to see you there!
Stacy Pritt, DVM, MS, MBA, CPIA, CHRC, ECoP(EAR), DACAW, is the Assistant Vice President, Conflict of Interest and the IACUC/Faculty Associate in Psychiatry (Ethics Division) at the University of Texas Southwestern.