President’s Corner #14: Summer Letter from the ISMRM President


Almost seven weeks have passed since the end of our very successful Annual Meeting in Paris at the Paris Expo Porte de Versailles. We all congratulate the Past President, Dan Sodickson, and the program chair, Karla Miller, for outstanding work with not only the program and speakers but also the social events and the crazy closing party at the museum Les Pavillons de Bercy. I hope you all took the opportunity to be children again. This year’s annual meeting had among other themes focus on diversity, unconscious bias and how ISMRM can address these issues.

Just because it is summer, things do not stand still in the ISMRM and in the Central Office. On the contrary several things have happened in the past weeks. As mentioned in my closing remarks, the Board of Trustee did approve the ISMRM statement regarding behavior and respect at our meeting and other ISMRM activities. This statement is now posted on our website.

It is also my great pleasure to announce that I have appointed Prof Elisabeth (Liz) Morris, after approval from the Board of Trustee, as the ISMRM Equity Officer, and she will join the Executive Committee and be present at our next meeting in Chicago at RNSA. The role of the Equity Officer and the framework for her and the working group she will chair will be discussed and laid out in the coming weeks.

Last week, our Executive Director, Roberta Kravitz, and the program chair, John Port, and the vice program chair, Doug Noll, made a site visit to Montreal in preparation for the upcoming ISMRM 27th Annual Meeting (11-16 May 2019) and the 28th SMRT Annual Meeting (10-13 May 2019) in Montreal, Canada, to be held at Palais des congrès de Montréal‎. I am pleased to say that as usual everything is going according to plan. The congress venue is great, and even with what John Port and, I hope, an even larger attendance in 2019, we will fit. While they enjoyed themselves in Montreal, I took so-called vacation at our family estate in northern Sweden (Figure 1).

Other ISMRM activities during the summer include virtual meetings organized by the ISMRM study groups, with the next scheduled for 30 August 2018. The Hyperpolarized Media Study Group will be presenting “Emerging Applications of Hyperpolarization.” For more information about this virtual meeting as well as both other future and past virtual meetings, go to

However, just so you do not think I have been lazy doing nothing while everybody else is working during the summer, I attach a few photos of one of my little summer projects at our family home. The most important project this summer was the outside isolation of a brick wall facing to the room in the basement where we have the motor and pump for our water that comes from our own deep drill station (Figures 2-3). I wanted to make sure we maintain a steady warm room even in the winter so the water does not freeze.

What do you need for such a project? It was very easy – I just used a handsaw and two drilling machines – one to which I connected the tiny drill, and one with the bite attached for screwing the 14 cm (5.5 inches) screw in place to hold the isolation, plaster, and boards and 30-meter electric cable. And then, of course, it is good to have a helping hand, in this case my 90-year-old mother, to hold the board while I was drilling and screwing (Figure 4-5). The boards have been painted a classic red color, Falu rödfärg, typical for this region of Sweden (Figure 6). The pigment for the color originates from the vast products at the copper mines in Falun and have been used for decades to paint the houses in this region as it is very weather and mold resistant. If you want to read more about the Falun copper mines and the paint, see and

I always have summer projects, and the last figure (figure 7) demonstrates some of the crazy things I have done in the past, like when I painted the tall wall of the barn a few years ago in what you now know is Falu rödfärg. I promise I will never do it again, and I do not recommend anybody to try – it is very scary, I can tell you.

Best summer wishes

Pia S

Figure 1. Our family summerhouse that was originally built 1810 by my mother’s late grandparents

Figure 2. The famous brick wall

Figure 3. The brick wall covered with lath in place to have support for the screws

Figure 4. The plastic cover and 10 cm thick isolation material – we are getting there

Figure 5. My handy assistant: mother Astrid just demonstrating how to hold the board before I came with the drill and screw

Figure 6. Painted boards in place and project completed (still need to replace the tin roof).

Figure 7. Painting the barn wall 8 meter up in the sky with no protection as part of painting project 2015.