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November 29, 1976

Job Specifications for the President of a County Medical Society: or How the Establishment Remains Established

Author Affiliations

Dr Crawshaw is the immediate past president of the Multnomah County Medical Society, and Mr Elsner is the executive director of the Multnomah County Medical Society and immediate past president of the American Association of Medical Society Executives.

JAMA. 1976;236(22):2514-2516. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03270230036025

ANNUALLY evaluating the staff is one of the duties of the president of our local county medical society. While busily engaged in checking staff members' performance against responsibilities, it was discovered that there was no provision for judging the president. Of course, the society's bylaws specified he must be a member and must be elected, but beyond that—nothing. It is a curious fact of our culture that the higher the administrative responsibility, the less capacity is specified. Where there are no aptitude tests for president of the medical society, manufacturing company, or a government, yet there are hundreds for clerk-typists.

The discrepancy can only be corrected by the presidential job-holders. Fortunately, after completing a year as president of a county medical society, the experience has revealed much about the position. Unfortunately, most of the learning has been sheer abrading experience; hopefully, to lessen this price for future county medical society