Each year at the annual RSNA conference in Chicago, Cheryl Proval, editor and associate publisher of Decisions in Axis Imaging News, brings together members of the Editorial Advisory Board (EAB) of the magazine? for an enjoyable evening at a five-star restaurant. The event is part business and part social. While there are lively discussions about children, vacations, politics, sports, and movies, topics are equally devoted to acquisition strategies for PET, gastrointestinal imaging, PACS, optimizing MRI throughput, breast cancer treatment options, and the like. It was during these special evenings over the past few years with Cheryl and the EAB that Curtis Pickelle, president of Medical World Communications and cofounder of the magazine, and I decided that someday Cheryl would assume the title of Publisher of Axis Imaging News. That day has arrived.

In January, Cheryl was promoted to publisher, the first time that we have promoted an editorial person to this position. Bestowing the title of publisher is no small honor. It means that this particular individual has attained a broad and in-depth understanding of the market, while at the same time becoming well respected and well known within the industry. In Cheryl’s case, she is second to none within editorial circles when it comes to comprehending and reporting on the economic side of radiology and imaging. Cheryl has a unique understanding of the financial issues that impact radiologists, radiology administrators, and health care organization CEOs, COOs, and CFOs. Even though Cheryl does not write for Axis Imaging News, other than her always very timely and thought-provoking Viewpoint, she assigns, edits, and orchestrates all of the editorial content that appears in the magazine. Under her leadership and guidance, the editorial content and relevancy of Axis Imaging News have improved each year. For this, she has past and present members of the EAB to thank for providing her with invaluable guidance and direction. Each of them can take pride in knowing that they lent a hand with this promotion.

Rising to the role of publisher also requires that an individual be just as effective internally as she is with the outside market. Within the Allied Healthcare Group, Cheryl is both respected and admired by her coworkers as well as the management team. She is a team player and tireless worker who is forever pushing herself to strive for perfection. At the same time, she has the ability not to take herself too seriously, and maintains a good-natured and friendly demeanor with the other employees. While many editors maintain relationships with their sales and art/production staff that are akin to mixing oil with water, Cheryl has an excellent working relationship with the entire Axis Imaging News team.

Going forward, the economic side of health care, and radiology and imaging in particular, is going to consume even more of our country’s financial resources, as well as our time and energy, as those involved try to find a way to deliver quality health care in a cost-effective manner. While inflation remains in check for most industries, the costs associated with health care continue to grow. It would not surprise me if the campaign slogan during the 2004 presidential election winds up being, “It’s health care, stupid.”

For this reason, the editorial direction and mission statement of Axis Imaging News will become even more important and valuable to the radiology community in the years to come. While we certainly do not know what direction radiology and health care will take in the future, it is reassuring that Cheryl Proval will be at the helm of Axis Imaging News.

President, MWC/Allied Healthcare Group email:[email protected]