Volume 36 Number 5 | October 2022
Claude Rector, MA, MLS(ASCP)CM, ASCLS President-Elect
ASCLS has long been the preeminent medical laboratory professional organization, in large part due to the contributions of our talented members. However, ASCLS is in the midst of transformational changes to ensure our organization is relevant to our newer professionals. The concerning drop in ASCLS membership is a symptom of the need to revitalize and innovate.
As president-elect, how would you promote/advocate for the level of transformation that is needed as an organization?
First, let’s take a look at the ASCLS mission statement. The mission of ASCLS is to make a positive impact in healthcare through leadership that will assure excellence in the practice of laboratory medicine.
Some will say that this is a mission impossible. I strongly disagree. I only had to look out into the room of medical laboratory professionals gathered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, for the 2022 ASCLS, AGT & SAFMLS Joint Annual Meeting to see all the reasons why I believe we are accomplishing our mission.
Second, ASCLS is built upon three strategic pillars: community, knowledge, and advocacy.
The ASCLS community gathered this past June for our 90th Annual Meeting. I want you all to see yourself as the ASCLS shareholders. This was our shareholders’ meeting. The members at that meeting are the leaders of the ASCLS community.
The ASCLS community gathers several times a year to share knowledge. Our Clinical Laboratory Educators Conference (CLEC) is where it all began for me. The 2008 CLEC in Savannah, Georgia, was where I was first introduced to my ASCLS family.
And when it comes to advocacy, I truly enjoy our annual Laboratory Legislative Symposium. My first ever trip to Washington, DC, was to advocate on behalf of our profession. The feeling of moving through Capitol Hill and meeting with senators and representatives from my state was awesome.
We all have to be advocates for ASCLS. We have to tell our story to members of the laboratory profession. Tell others why we feel that ASCLS is the pre-eminent organization for every student, graduate, MLT, MLS, and DCLS working in the medical laboratory profession today. ASCLS is the home for the medical laboratory professional.
I am in a wonderful position to advocate for ASCLS. I am an educator for our profession. I get to see young and excited faces every year. They are eager to learn and want to become part of this profession. They want to hear and believe that they have made the right choice for their career. Tell them your story.
Sometimes I ask myself if I am in the right position to be the best leader for this organization and profession. Could I be more useful as a hospital laboratory director? I receive my answer each year at graduation. Knowing the role I play in creating new laboratory professionals for the workforce and healthcare is wonderful.
There is no better feeling in the world. I am in the right place. I plan on getting up every day to continue the ASCLS mission. My mission is to try my best to make a positive impact in healthcare through leadership that will assure excellence in the practice of laboratory science.
Claude Rector is Assistant Professor at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro, Arkansas.
2022 ASCLS Election Results
Board of Directors
- President Elect: Claude Rector
- Secretary/Treasurer: Kyle Riding
- Region I Director: Frank Scarano
- Region VII Director: Miles Tompkins
- Region VIII Director: Jessica Lawless
- Developing Professionals Director: Ivann Martinez
- Ascending Professionals Director: Cheyenne Reyes
Judicial Committee (five-year term)
- Cindy Johnson
Nominations Committee (two-year term)
- Deb Rodahl
- Ian Wallace
Developing Professionals Forum
- Chair: Ivann Martinez
- Vice-Chair: Katelynn Farrar
- Secretary: Jeremiah Oh
Ascending Professionals Forum
- Chair: Heather Herrington
- Vice-Chair: Jesse Day
- Secretary: Ogechi Ohaeto
Diversity Advocacy Council
- Chair: Letycia Nunez Argote
- Vice-Chair: Stephanie Whitehead