Letter from the Editor
By Lori Jackson Norris, FASPR, senior physician recruiter, Dignity Health, AZ
“But it’s a dry heat.” That’s the unofficial state motto for Arizona! But what does that really mean? As ASPR members from all over the country get ready to converge on Tucson for the ASPR conference in August, some who haven’t been here before are probably wondering what a summer in the sunny southwest is like. The saying isn’t just something we made up to justify living in the desert. It really is a drier heat, scientifically speaking. As an official Arizona native, I’ll try to do my part to prepare those of you who are more accustomed to something we don’t experience very much of here: humidity.
According to the justroughinit.com blog, the context in which the statement “but it’s a dry heat” usually implies that dry heat is better than humid heat. In other words, it’s better to have to go through an Arizona dry heat wave of 112 degrees with 20% humidity, than perspire through a 95 degree east coast heat wave with 75% humidity. It’s known as the “Heat Index”, and there’s solid data associated with the claim that it’s physiologically more comfortable for the human body to deal with lower humidity heat rather than higher.
Another common tip for surviving and thriving in the desert, besides drinking lots of water, is to plan your outdoor activities for early mornings and evenings. This plan will work out perfectly in Tucson, because we will be attending fabulous educational sessions at the conference in a climate-controlled resort hotel throughout the day! When evening does roll around, prepare yourselves for a treat. Arizona sunsets are the most awesome sunsets ever! That’s a biased opinion, but shared by many natives and visitors alike. During or after sunset, you’ll be able to enjoy the great amenities of the hotel, including incredible pools to take a dip in and cool off, even if only your toes! If you haven’t registered yet, there is still time. Go to www.aspr.org for more information. I’m looking forward to welcoming you to my beautiful home state of Arizona! The members of the ASPR Education Committee have worked hard this year to provide the latest in educational components and top-notch keynot presentations, as well as terrific entertainment planned for Tuesday night at the world renowned Old Tucson Studio. Several Arizona ASPR members plan to attend the conference this year to lend a warm welcome. Read more about some of them and the advice they have for you here.
This summer issue of JASPR is a special one for me. It is my last as editor in chief and co-chair of the JASPR committee, as my two-year term ends in August. It’s been a tremendous learning experience, although it was a tougher job than I realized when I agreed to take it on. I have even greater respect for the former editors, Laura Screeney and Judy Brown, who co-chaired this committee for many, many years. We owe a debt of gratitude to them both. Through my involvement with JASPR and the ASPR leadership team, I have met some fantastic new people, including members, vendors and other experts in the field, while strengthening other long-time relationships. This was a big reason why I wanted to get involved, and I am grateful for this opportunity. I most especially appreciate my year-long association and friendship with my co-chair, Miranda Grace. She is a kind, generous, and bright individual. As Miranda assumes the role of editor in chief she will welcome a new associate editor/co-chair on board to work with her, Colleen Munkel, DASPR, Hattiesburg Clinic, MS. Many of you already know her through the articles she has authored for JASPR over the last two years. Miranda and Colleen will bring a refreshing and spirited energy to JASPR and to the ASPR leadership team. I plan to continue to support both of them as they take JASPR to new heights in this age of social media, e-content and ever-changing electronic media devices! I encourage any of you with experience or an interest in journalism to join us on this new adventure!