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Spotlight on State Affiliates: Kansas Society of Clinical Oncology

Oct 17, 2011

In 2009, leaders of the Kansas Society of Clinical Oncology (KaSCO) decided that the organization was not fulfilling its potential for oncologists in the state and chose to revitalize KaSCO. An ASCO State Affiliate Grant helped them start from scratch and build a strong foundation for an active state society. In the interview that follows, KaSCO Executive Director Marci Cali discusses the revitalization process and next steps.

AC: Why did KaSCO make the decision to hire a management company to rebuild the society?
Ms. Cali:
The organization’s leaders wanted someone who had experience with things like financial management and running a membership campaign and felt that a volunteer member may not be able to give KaSCO’s rebirth the time and effort it would require.

AC: What has the rebuilding process looked like?
Ms. Cali:
It took some time to get started because a lot of things were dispersed, and there were a lot of documents to be located and filed. We took some time searching and identifying, pulling the administrative aspects together. Now that we have financial controls, policies and procedures, and an updated set of bylaws in place, we’re in good business shape and have a sound administrative infrastructure.

AC: What has been the biggest success thus far?
Ms. Cali:
Seeing members being collaborative and working together. Because the organization hadn’t been active for several years, it’s like being away from someone for a long time—you have to rebuild the relationship.

How was the ASCO State Affiliate Grant helpful in the rebuilding process?
Ms. Cali:
The grant funding was used to develop policies and procedures for administration of the organization, including:
  • Developing a membership structure along with an inventory and database of oncologists in Kansas
  • Reaching out to prospective members in the state
  • Developing a recruitment plan
  • Designing and producing membership brochures
  • Analyzing the current financial resources and fiduciary controls
  • Drafting and approving new bylaws
  • Requesting information from the state (including articles of incorporation and other legacy documents of the organization)
  • Compiling reports and forms to request tax exemption status
  • Developing budgets
  • Fundraising to support activities for KaSCO, such as a conference of membership
AC: What does the future hold for KaSCO?
Ms. Cali:
We’re hoping for growth and increased participation so that we can have an impact on issues at the local level, be the voice of oncology in Kansas, and bring great education and programs to members.

Our first annual membership meeting will take place on December 2, 2011, in Kansas City. We hope that people come and see that KaSCO really wants to be an advocate for their issues, and that the best way to get involved in those issues is to become a member.

AC: How can Kansas oncologists get involved in KaSCO or find more information?
Ms. Cali:
They can visit our website (kasco-kansas.com) to find membership applications, register for our upcoming annual meeting, and learn more about our organization. They can also email me or any of our Board members to talk personally about how to be part of the collective voice for oncology in Kansas:

Marci Cali, Executive Director

Sukumar Ethirajan, MD, President

Fadi F. Estephan, MD, Vice President

Thomas K. Schulz, MD, Treasurer

Dennis F. Moore, Jr., MD, Member-at-Large
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