From the Board of Governors

From the Board of Governors

Lessons Learned Will Help Guide New President-Elect

by Robert M. Barr, MD, ABR President-elect



I am excited to be named president-elect of the American Board of Radiology. As a private practice radiologist, this is not a role I had ever imagined myself in before joining the Board of Governors several years ago. At the time, I didn’t know what to expect.


Since becoming involved, I have found that I believe even more strongly in the ABR’s mission. What we do is not perfect, nor is it an exact science. But it serves an important role and it matters that we do it as well as we possibly can. The value of the public’s ability to rely on the knowledge, skill, and understanding of healthcare workers has been highlighted during the coronavirus pandemic. Furthermore, our medical colleagues rely on us as trusted partners.


Equally important, I strongly believe in the people behind the ABR. The leadership, physician volunteers, and staff are a top-notch group of unusually talented and dedicated people. The radiation oncologists, medical physicists, diagnostic radiologists, and interventional radiologists involved at all levels of the Board are leaders in their fields. I’m enormously proud of the work they do in each of their respective areas. They also understand the criticism that sometimes comes with the job of certification, and they are seriously committed to providing the best experience possible while seeking to ensure a certification process that is fair, rigorous, and credible.


To that end, the ABR has made great progress over the past few years modernizing and improving both initial and continuing certification. I’ve personally received a lot of feedback, mostly positive, particularly about Online Longitudinal Assessment (OLA). I believe it is a platform that lends itself to ongoing refinement, and I expect to see it further improve over time.


We still have work to do. We need to keep costs down, we need to ensure that testing is meaningful and accurate, and we need to improve the overall test experience for our candidates, among other challenges. We are working on all of these today. I hope you’ll give us a chance, and I welcome your suggestions and constructive feedback.


Dr. Barr can be reach at

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