The Future. Through the Eyes of a Surgeon

The College has created a new video that was recently shown at Clinical Congress. The video focuses on the critical need for surgeons to have a strong voice and seat at the table in all patient care decisions, especially as the health care environment continues to change. The video successfully highlights why surgeons have a unique and important perspective and focuses on the need to strengthen the collective voice of all surgeons, especially in our efforts to reach health care leaders, policymakers, and the public. The video can be downloaded at:

ACS celebrates 100 years

100 Years of Setting the Quality Standard:

Call for Abstracts

Dear members of The Wisconsin Surgical Society

We are pleased to announce our plan to proceed with a virtual annual meeting of The Wisconsin Surgical Society, A Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, on Friday, November 6th.

Please save the date on your calendar and plan to virtually attend. We are finalizing the agenda for an engaging, educational, and fun event and, as in previous years, we hope to have participation from surgeons across the state.

This is the first call for abstracts for the virtual annual meeting. Abstract presentations highlighting research from across the state are planned for Friday morning. Despite the virtual format, we still plan for the sessions to be interactive. Surgeons, students, residents, advance practice practitioners, nurses, and researchers are all welcome to submit abstracts related to basic science, clinical, and health services research; quality improvement projects; education, policy, and advocacy initiatives; interesting case reports; and any other surgery-related topic you wish to share with the WSS community.

We plan to be broadly inclusive when selecting abstracts for presentation. As such, each person may only present one abstract at this meeting. You are welcome to submit more than one abstract, but only the higher scored abstract will be selected for presentation. You may be a co-author or senior author on an unlimited number of abstracts. You are welcome to submit abstracts that have been previously submitted or presented in other conferences. As in previous years, we will give awards for the highest rated abstracts and presentations.

All abstracts must be submitted through the online abstract submission website at .

The deadline for abstract submission is Tuesday, September 1st, 2020 at 6pm CT.

All abstracts must be sponsored by a WSS member who should plan to attend the virtual meeting. If the sponsor is not able to attend, the sponsor will need to arrange an alternative WSS member to sponsor the presentation. If you have any questions, please contact Elise Lawson at or Jessica Wernberg at

Our annual meeting is a great opportunity to discuss relevant issues pertaining to the clinical practice of surgery in a way that allows our membership to make and reinforce connections with colleagues from across our state. While a virtual meeting cannot fully replace an in-person meeting at a five-star resort with a world class spa, we hope that the flexibility of the virtual format will all allow more people to attend and participate. We fully intend to be back at be The American Club in Kohler, Wisconsin for the 2021 meeting.

Please encourage your colleagues and trainees, especially those who are new to Wisconsin, to submit an abstract and/or attend. We look forward to connecting with you in November!

Elise Lawson, MD, MSHS
Jessica Wernberg, MD
Brandon Grover, DO
Tim Ridolfi, MD
Program Committee Co-Chairpersons

President's Message

Membership of Wisconsin Surgical Society

I would like to provide an update to the WSS membership. The WSS council recently held our Spring Meeting. With the ongoing COVID pandemic many items were discussed, the most pressing was the fate of our Annual Meeting at The American Club.  The reality is that multiple societies and organizations have altered or cancelled their meetings with the uncertainties that we all face. Concerns over ability to travel, reimbursement, maintaining practices, the quality of scientific programs, and the ability to meet in groups have been raised by the leadership of the WSS.  The American Club has generously allowed us out of our contractual agreement during these unprecedented times by forgiving our financial obligation for this year in exchange for holding the fall meeting in Kohler for an additional two years.

It is my unfortunate duty to inform the society that our annual in person meeting in Kohler will be cancelled this fall.  I will work with the Program Committee and a group of members as we explore options for holding a virtual meeting this fall. As the details are worked out we will keep the membership up to date. I understand that cancelling the regular meeting will impact many of the members, but the WSS council feels this is the best way to preserve our society’s financial resources.  I hope we can bring together a virtual conference this fall to meet the needs of the students, residents and members that use our platform to present research, obtain CME and network with others in our very active chapter.

One additional item to pass to the membership is that the council has proposed that officers and council members stay in their current roles for an additional year. This decision will allow the transition to new leadership to occur at the next regular fall meeting allowing the new president to give a formal address as is our chapter’s tradition.

An additional item is our new Chapter Initiative Fund. The WSS has started the Chapter Initiative Fund where members can donate directed dollars to our chapter through the ACS. These are tax deductible donations that can be directed to our chapter by mailing funds to:

Attention: Shane Hollett
American College of Surgeons Foundation
635 N St Clair
Chicago, IL  60611

On the check, note in the lower left hand corner, “Wisconsin Chapter Fund”

Chapter Initiate Funds uses include but are not limited to: scholarship, educational grants for travel/accommodations for the ACS Clinical Congress, research scholarship/fellowship, international guest scholarships, initiatives that advance the mission of the ACS.

If you have yet to pay your dues for 2020, please take the time to do so now. You can renew online here. Now, more than ever, your dues are needed to help sustain the Society.

Please feel free to contact the society or me directly with any questions or concerns. I look forward to seeing everyone back in Kohler in November 5-6, 2021 for our next in person conference and hope to see everyone virtually this fall with a new conference format during this pandemic year.

Thank you

Brian Lewis MD FACS
President of the Wisconsin Surgical Society