Acceptance of Gold Medal From the Catalan Society of Transplantation by Drs. Lorraine Racusen and Kim Solez – With Remarks on the Banff Meeting Spirit

Lorraine C Racusen, K. Solez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The awarding of the gold medal from the Catalan Society of Transplantation to the organizers of the Banff Transplant Pathology meetings is an opportunity to acknowledge gratitude to all the people who have helped make these meetings a success over the past 26 years. Other large organizations have given up consensus conferences, but the Banff consensus process is thriving. It is unusual for any organization to have the same leadership for 26 years. It has only worked for the Banff meetings because the leadership was flexible and able to change with the times. People have often talked about the “special Banff spirit.” This year's meeting gave us the opportunity to examine this spirit in detail by analyzing how the meeting consensus sessions and social events functioned. The meeting has never used expert facilitators, but instead has employed experts within the transplant pathology community to moderate discussions. The size of the working sessions is important; they have usually been less than 150 people, which is within “Dunbar's number,” meaning that in gatherings of that size one can have empathetic feeling for all the people there. In larger gatherings one loses that “we are all in this together” feeling and people begin thinking “us” versus “them” thoughts. For “unknown” young people the ability to easily talk to well-known leaders in the field is rewarding and keeps them coming back for more time after time. Images of the social events do not suggest any sort of hierarchy; everyone interacts with everyone else.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2243-2246
Number of pages4
JournalTransplantation Proceedings
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2017


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Transplantation

Cite this