Published 5/1/2012
Bonnie Emberton

AEEF Effort Enlivens, Extends Annual Meeting Learning Experience

The AAOS Poster Enhancement Project, one of several new learning opportunities introduced at the 2012 AAOS Annual Meeting, has brought vitality and longevity to the Academy’s annual display of cutting-edge science posters.

Made possible by the AAOS Education Enhancement Fund (AEEF), the project gave presenters the option of adding audio to their posters. Through smartphone technology, many presenters recorded audio commentary. As Annual Meeting attendees viewed the posters, they could listen to the commentary that was transmitted to their smartphones and tablet computers. An interactive feedback loop allowed them to pose questions to authors or offer comments.

But the AAOS Poster Enhancement Project didn’t end with the meeting. A second phase is extending the reach of the posters to those who weren’t able to attend as well as to those who want a second look, with ongoing online access to almost 300 of the posters that were presented at the 2012 Annual Meeting. Every area of orthopaedics is represented—from adult reconstruction to tumors/metabolic disease.

The posters will be available online at http://aaos.posterview.com for one year. AAOS members can easily create an ID and password of their choice to view the posters and even dialogue with authors via email or blog postings.

Ramon L. Jimenez, MD, president of the Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF) board of directors, visited the project online. “I found the poster view site to be user-friendly and very informative,” he said. “The added feature of being able to email the author right from the screen facilitates direct discussion and exchange. I hope that AAOS members will take advantage of this—it’s a whole new vista.”

Sponsoring fund ahead of goal
Launched in December 2010, the AEEF is the first AAOS-OREF initiative under a new partnership arrangement that made OREF the Academy’s official fundraising arm. The AEEF’s goal is to ensure that AAOS educational programs remain innovative, engaging, and world-class. At the end of its first year, donor contributions to the fund totaled $409,000—a sum that had increased to nearly $500,000 by March 31, 2012. More than 223 donors have already made contributions.

Asked how he felt about the fund’s progress, AEEF Governance Committee Chair Edward Akelman, MD, said, “I feel very proud of the financial support from AAOS members—and from AAOS and OREF employees. It really reflects what teamwork can accomplish.”

The AEEF Governance Committee oversees fundraising activities and chooses which projects the fund will support. The committee’s selection for the next project to be funded will be announced soon. The more support the fund receives, the greater the number and scope of educational initiatives it can make available to AAOS members. Dr. Akelman is hopeful that the teamwork will continue and more donors will come on board to take AEEF to the next level.

Next step: $1 million by year-end
The AEEF’s next target is to reach $1 million in donations by Dec. 31, 2012. Gifts at all levels are welcome and will be recognized. AAOS members who haven’t already contributed or would like to renew their AEEF gift in 2012 can make a secure online donation at

Bonnie Emberton is OREF director of development. She can be reached at 847-384-4353 or emberton@oref.org

AAOS Staff Support Orthopaedic Education
As the preeminent provider of musculoskeletal education, the AAOS relies heavily on its members and volunteer support. But behind the scenes, AAOS staff help ensure that courses run smoothly, that meetings are flawless, and that educational materials—from textbooks to multimedia—meet the high quality standards that AAOS members and others have come to expect from the Academy.

Through the AAOS Education Enhancement Fund (AEEF), AAOS staff can show their support for orthopaedic education in another way. Their donations are also making a difference!

Tim Riley, marketing coordinator, has worked for AAOS for 13 years. “I’ve worked in various areas of the Academy—from customer service to marketing—and have become aware of members’ educational needs, wants, and expectations—as well as the importance of AAOS continuing to provide innovative, state-of-the-art learning experiences,” Mr. Riley said. “Donating to this fund is my way of contributing to a wider spectrum of educational opportunities for orthopaedic surgeons and promoting better patient care.”

For Kathie Niesen, education manager for convention and meeting services, supporting AEEF reflects her professional commitment. “I contributed to AEEF because education is what I do for a living,” Ms. Niesen explained. “It seemed important and appropriate to me to contribute to a fund that supports educational enhancements in orthopaedics.”

Jennifer Wolff Jones, director of the department of society relations, has personal reasons for giving. “My father was a paratrooper ranger in the Army,” Ms. Jones said. “All of the jumps had an impact on his hips. James C. Kudrna, MD, gave my father two titanium hips in the early 1990s, which allowed him to continue his very active lifestyle. My father benefited from Dr. Kudrna’s education, so I believe in supporting AAOS and this fund—the bottom line is patient care.”

For more information about the AEEF or the AAOS Poster Enhancement Project, contact Bonnie Emberton, OREF director of development, at 847-384-4353 or emberton@oref.org