Dear SOLAS® Members & Friends:

On behalf of the SOLAS board of directors, welcome to the 11th Annual SOLAS Meeting, Take Your Lateral to the Next Level.

Meeting Co-Chairs, Pedro Berjano, MD and Thomas Cha, MD, have been working alongside Global Education Director Robert Eastlack, MD to create an outstanding program. Greg Malham, MD and the rest of the Research committee had their hands full in reviewing and selecting more than 60 abstracts from our peers around the globe to produce a robust research program. In addition to the peer reviewed abstracts, this year we will have several focused symposia, as well as one dedicated to the needs of In-Training and Young Surgeons.

The meeting officially kicks-off Thursday evening with a Welcome Reception and the much-anticipated point-counter-point Case Debates. New this year, attendees will have an opportunity to attend a sponsor hosted lunch symposium on Friday afternoon and will have the evening free to network with colleagues and catch up with old friends. The meeting will conclude with the top five Young Investigators receiving recognition for their exemplary work in furthering lateral access surgery research. I encourage you to stay for the entire program and experience the tremendous benefits of interacting with the most experienced surgeons in lateral access surgery from around the world.

In the last year, the society has seen tremendous change and poised itself for long-term growth. SOLAS introduced membership dues; implemented the first full-fledged corporate support program; identified $100,000 worth of research grants to fund; produced meetings in each of the organization’s five global regions, launched a new website and has rolled-out a new logo.

Thanks to the efforts of Stephen Ryu, MD and the other members of the Membership Committee, SOLAS grew by more than 30% and signed three corporate partners. The Education and Research committees enjoyed similar successes with record numbers of meeting attendees and receiving nearly 20 grant applications on the inaugural request. It is clear, lateral access has a following and SOLAS is leading the way!

The Annual SOLAS Meeting is the pinnacle in lateral access education and research, so make sure to get the most from your experience: attend the Members Business Breakfast (members only), visit the exhibit hall, have your headshot taken, take part in discussions and most importantly, network with your peers.

A special thank you to our members who have and continue to support this growing field, the Board of Directors for their vision and talent, and our corporate partners, who make it possible to fulfill the mission – NuVasive, Inc., Global Partner, and Globus Medical and Zimmer Biomet, Alliance Partners.

I look forward to seeing you all in San Diego!

Thank you,
Jim A. Youssef, MD
SOLAS President