Washington State Assembly of the Association of Surgical Technologists
Summer Newsletter August 2018
Meet your WSA Board: 
President-Valerie Smith, CST 
Vice President-Iris Garcia, CST
Treasurer-Libby McRae, CST, FAST
Secretary-Sherridan Poffenroth, CST, CRCST, FAST

Board of Directors:
Mark Martin, CST
Juan Suarez, CST
Cathy Riorden, CST
Corrie Reagan, CST
Neal Cunningham, CST

President's Message

Washington State Assembly Members and Friends,
I hope that all of you have been enjoying the long days of summer soaking up some sunshine, and making memories with your family and friends.  I have enjoyed every minute! I am however, fine with the idea of once again having some routine as we get back into school and Fall approaches.
This has been an exciting year for me,  my first as the President of the Washington State Assembly.  I have been so blessed to have an amazing Board helping me learn the ropes and making our assembly stronger as the months continue to roll by. We are excited to continue working and growing.  Currently there are 753 CST AST members in the State with over 1600 registered practicing surgical Technologists. Not too shabby!
September 16-22 is National Surgical Technologist week.  I hope that all of you will thank a Surgical Technologist who trained you!  I also hope that you will encourage your employer and employees to celebrate this week!  You know who is "behind the mask" but not everyone does. Make it a big deal at work! Make it a big deal in your community. You deserve to be patted on the back for all of the hard work that you do for your patients every single day!
National Conference this year was in Orlando Florida!  If you have never been to a National Conference, put it on your bucket list!  It is a great opportunity to network with fellow Surg Techs, get a great education racking up the continuing education credits, and having a lot of fun while doing it.  It is neat to see the parliamentary process, and have the ability to be a part of it. I enjoyed seeing our National BOD at work for us as Surgical Technologists. They work for us on a National level,  state level, and global level. In fact we have two members of our very own state who are on National Committees! Libby McRae is Chair of the Education Committee and Sherridan Poffenroth is the chair of the SALC Committee.  Way to represent!
Next year will not disappoint.  Join us. We will be meeting in Maryland, 20 minutes away from our Nation's Capital.  AST will be celebrating 50 years since the Association of Surgical Technologists was formed.  We are now over 60,000 strong! This golden anniversary will be celebrated May 29- June 1. Put it on your calendar and cross something off your bucket list.  
This Spring we had a wonderful workshop at Seattle Children's Hospital.  We had 127 people in attendance. We listened and learned from great speakers.  We donated blankets and school supplies to the kids at Seattle Children's along with some cash.  We had the best fundraising success that we have ever had with our assembly. Our next workshop will be October 20 th .  It is a one day event in Richland, Washington at Kadlec Regional Medical Center.  There will be 5-6 continuing education credits offered. This workshop will be exciting! We will be electing a Secretary and three Board of Directors positions.  If you have interest in making a difference and helping to grow your State assembly- get involved! We would love to have you on board!

Warmest Wishes,
Valerie Smith

12th Annual Scrub Bowl

1st place-   KARI ERWIN, Yakima Valley College                     
2nd place- MARK PEIPEL, Columbia Basin College
3rd place- ALISSA AKLAND, Yakima Valley College

National Conference Updates~~~Orlando, 2018!!
Thank you to Valerie Smith, Iris Garcia, Libby McRae, Sherridan Poffenroth, Stefanie Lim and Sarah Rogers for attending national conference and representing Washington State.


               National Conference in Orlando 2018 was A-MAZ-ING! Not only did I have a great time at conference, but my family was also able to join me for a few days before the conference. We had a great time at the beach, Gatorland, and at Universal Orlando. Hogwarts was super cool and yes, the butter beer was yummy!
               The SALF (State Assembly Leadership Forum) kicked off my conference experience this year and did not disappoint. I learned some things to help make our assembly the best that it can be. I enjoyed getting to know CST's from other states and listened to some of their successes as well as frustrations. We also talked a lot about ways to get thinking about legislation in Washington State.
               There were so many great speakers at conference. I listened to lectures on some super interesting topics, from advances in robotics, medical missions, to face transplants. We were all well taught.
               It was also fun to get to know some members of our own Washington State Assembly better. I hope to be able to get to know them even better at our upcoming workshops. We all went the City Walk near Universal Studios and had dinner at the Cow Fish restaurant, the Sushi was good.
     It was an honor to have the privilege of representing Washington State and serve as a delegate. I was able to talk to those running and vote on several positions of the National Board. It was great to see their desire to serve, chat with them about their desired path to make our profession better and get to know a bit more about the process of democracy on a National level. How great it is to see Association at work for us as a state. It was even better to see a glimpse of the future as CST's grow in numbers in the states and the organization grow and be recognized globally. Next year, 2019, will be our 50-year anniversary! I am looking forward to being next to our nation's capital and be part of history as AST turns 50 years old.

Valerie Smith, CST
WSA of AST President

Once again, I had the privilege to represent Washington as a delegate to national conference.  It never gets old and as long as I can, I will attend conference. Thank you for allowing me to go.  I truly enjoy all reconnecting to friends and colleagues. I traveled across the country one day early to take advantage of the Disney parks. It had been many, many years since I had been there. Many childhood memories came back to me all week. 

As part of the State Assembly Leadership Committee, I helped conduct the Leadership Forum the day before conference. This is always a great place to connect with other boards from across the country. This forum is not only for board members.  This is a great event to learn from others, network and earn additional credits. 

One of my favorite parts of being a delegate is participating in the elections. As a group, the six of us attended the business meetings, the candidate's forum and the elections. It is always exciting to see the process from start to finish with the results being new members elected to the national board. Thank you again for this opportunity.  

Sherridan Poffenroth, CST, CRCST, FAST

Sarah M. Rogers-AST National Conference, Delegate Experience
Going to Orlando, FL for the AST National Conference was my first experience as a delegate as well as being an attendee to conference and it was an amazing experience! I was very honored and excited to be chosen to go to Orlando to represent Washington with the other delegates. This opportunity taught me about the important role our national board plays, more about the role our state officers play, and even more about the role I can play as an individual working as a CST and one who teaches future surgical technologists. The voting process was a very powerful experience to me as I learned more about each candidate, their goals for the AST and CSTs, and their own passions for the field of surgical technology. I strongly feel that those elected will serve AST very well. Thank you again for giving me the opportunity to serve the Washington State Assembly of AST. If anyone of you out there have ever thought of going to national conference as an attendee or have wanted to serve as a delegate, DO IT! You won't regret a moment of it.

This year I was fortunate enough to be able to represent Washington State as a Delegate for National Conference! What an experience it was! I learned so much from Breast Reconstruction to Face Transplants. There was an abundance of interesting topics to choose from. However, my favorite part of attending is meeting new people. There is something special about meeting fellow techs through all walks of life and in their careers. It showed me that there is a strong sense of community and understanding with fellow techs. We work in a field that unless you are a part of the surgical community it is hard to understand what we go through. There is a certain bond that is hard to describe but clearly visible and felt throughout the entire conference. I am so honored that I was able to take part in representing Washington during the business sessions. The whole process is fascinating, and I loved being able to listen to the candidates and ask questions. If ever it is possible to attend a National Conference I would highly recommend it! It is an unforgettable experience.

Stefanie Lim
Attending an AST National Conference for the first time, as a delegate, was like nothing I've ever experienced before. It was so awesome to be able to network with other colleges from all around the United States. Being able to hear about their experiences and struggles was really inspiring. I also really enjoyed attending the business meeting, listening to the candidate speeches and discussing with
other Washington State delegates about their thoughts of why certain candidates should be on the National Board. Knowing that I was able to participate in voting for the next members of the National Board was such a rewarding experience and I feel honored to have been able to represent Washington State.


I was honored to be a delegate this year for Washington State Assembly. I have had the pleasure of doing so a number of years now and conference never loses its draw for me. I enjoy the speakers, the cities we get to visit and being a part of the elections process. My favorite part of conference, though, is definitely the people. Seeing colleagues year after year that have become great friends is a true reward.

I had the pleasure of getting to know the national board members fairly well this year and felt as though my participation in the election process was well informed. I look forward to whatever extent I am allowed to participate in subsequent years.

The facial transplant presentation was very interesting and I will never cease to be amazed at the swift progress that surgical care makes. I believe that AST makes a successful effort to provide us with top notch speakers at the conference events.

Thank you for sending delegates. Whomever decides to be a delegate for us next year, I encourage you to embrace the experience fully. It is rewarding to be so involved in your profession.
Libby McRae, CST, FAST


Saturday, OCTOBER 20, 2018
Kadlec Medical Center
888 Swift Blvd
Richland, WA 99352

HOTEL: Shiloh Inn Suites & Hotel
50 Comstock Street
Richland WA 99352
$74 King / $84 Douuble Queen
Ask for the "Surgical Technologist of Washington State" group rate.
Breakfast available early Saturday morning starting at 5:30am.

Meet & Greet Fall 2018~Impromtu gathering in the hotel lounge Friday evening, October 19th!

WORKSHOP:  5-6CE's~Member price $65 (Non member $80) Students $20. (Continental Breakfast and lunch included) 
ONLINE REGISTRATION:  Click on this link to register.

Map of Kadlec Medical Center in Richland


Announced Soon!


During our Annual Business Meeting at the Fall workshop, we will be holding elections for the following positions:
6 Delegates & 6 Alternates to National Conference in National Harbor, Maryland.

A Consent to Serve and a Curriculum Vitae are required. Click these links to print and complete your forms. Please forward completed forms to our Credentials Committee Chair, Sherridan Poffenroth at sherridanpoffenroth@gmail.com. 


Nominations from the floor will be accepted. Please submit completed paperwork upon arrival to the fall workshop. 

All positions are 2 year terms, with 2 term limits.  We would love to have you on the board or helping in a committee!  Candidates must be current active members for at least one year and have a CV and Consent to Serve completed and turned in by October 19, 2018.


National Surgical Technologist Week
Surgical Technologists have Heart!

Libby was awarded the prestigous FAST award this year in Orlando. We are so proud of you!


50th Annual National Conference
National Harbor, Maryland
Gaylord Resort
May 30 - June 2, 2019


Membership: As of July 15, 2018 WSA membership totals 737 members. 
Military - 56     Students - 93   20+ years - 71

Fundraising: Thank you for one of our best fundraising event ever.  With your help we can continue to put on bi-annual events for you and the members. 

Come see us in Richland for new and exciting items including raffle baskets, hats, and gifts from national conference. 


Washington State Legislative Update

Though Washington State is not actively pursuing another legislative push at this time, we are working to develop and implement a PUBLIC AWARENESS CAMPAIGN that will naturally lead into legislation within the next 10 years.  We will keep you updated on developments as well as how you may be involved.  Call us, email us, attend our workshops and corner us for a chat, Face Book us!!
WSA of AST | Surgical Technologists  |   http://wa.ast.org/