Dr. Anjana Samadder 42nd President of AAPI
Members of the Executive Committee, BOT, distinguished members of AAPI, and all guests, each time we gather to inaugurate a president, we bear witness to the enduring strength of our bylaws and constitution.
We affirm the promise of democracy in our organization. We recall that what binds our organization together is not the different regions or the tenets of our faith or the origins of our names. What makes us exceptional , what makes us of American Indian origin is our allegiance to an idea articulated more than four decades ago. We hold these truths to be self-evident.
Today, we continue a never-ending journey to bridge the meaning of those words with the realities of our time. For these four decades of history will tell you that while these truths may be self-evident, they have never been self-executing.
We need to understand that when times change, so must we, that Fidelity to our founding principles requires new responses to new challenges for preserving the honor and integrity of AAPI. We must harness new ideas and technology to remake the governance of our organization, rewarding the efforts and determination of every Indian American physician. This is what this moment requires. That is what will give real meaning to our creed. We must make hard choices to bring about these changes and make AAPI strong.
We, the members, still believe that our obligations are not just to ourselves for self-serving purposes but to the needs of all members. AAPI will remain the anchor of strong alliances in every corner of the USA and India.
For now, decisions are upon us, and we cannot afford delay. We cannot mistake absolutism for principle or substitute spectacle for politics or treat name-calling as reasoned debate. We must act, knowing today’s victories will only be partial and that it will be up to those who stand here in future years to advance the time’s spirit once conferred upon us by our leaders in a basement in Michigan.
My fellow AAPI members, the oath I have sworn to today before all of you was an oath to God and this organization, not a party or faction. And I will faithfully and passionately execute that pledge during the duration of my service. I seek your pardon in advance if in the line of my diligent duty I offend someone.
The words spoken today are the words of our members, and they represent our greatest hope. You and I, as members, have the power to set this organization’s course. You and I, as members, have the obligation to shape the debates of our time – not only with the votes we cast but with the voices we lift in defense of our most ancient values and enduring ideals.
Let each of us now embrace with solemn duty and awesome joy what is our lasting right. With common effort and common purpose, with passion and dedication, let us answer the call of duty and carry into an uncertain future that precious light of hope.
I accept with humility the honor which the AAPI members have conferred upon me. I accept it with resolve to do all that I can for the welfare of this organization.
In performing the duties of my office, I need the help and prayers of every one of you. I ask for your encouragement and support. The tasks we face are very difficult. We can accomplish them only if we work together. Each period has had its special challenges. Those that confront us now are as momentous as any in the past. Today marks the beginning not only of a new administration but of a period that will be eventful, perhaps decisive for us and AAPI.
I will work with all your support in making AAPI one of the nation’s leading lobbying forces regarding healthcare policies. I will work at forming the AAPI Code of Ethics, which will be the most comprehensive ethical guide for physicians. The opinions in the ethics code will address issues and challenges confronting the medical profession and represent AAPI policies.
We will continue to disseminate health and scientific information to our members and the public and carry out a broad range of health education programs via mass media and lectures.
I will continue to promote and encourage charity work in the USA and India, which have been a major milestone for us. I will always be there to address every member’s needs. Anyone who is ready to work with integrity for the members and not for self-promotion will find me by their side.
Finally, I would like to thank my family, mentors and all my friends who have stood by me during my most difficult moments and endured my emotional outbursts but always been very supportive.
Dr. Anjana Samadder
AAPI President 2023 – 2024