1.7: Translating Leadership Theory into Practice with Ken Slaw

1.7: Translating Leadership Theory into Practice with Ken Slaw

Some people have a passion for leadership. Others have passion for learning. For more than 20 years, Ken Slaw has been combining both in an effort to create unique experiences for himself, association members and colleagues. Discover unique concepts and insights regarding how to create an environment where professionals can continuously grow, learn and thrive in their work and lives.

Ken Slaw, PhD
Executive Director, Society for Vascular Surgery


“We all need to find time for reflection.”

Dr. Slaw received his masters and doctoral degrees in educational psychology from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Ken has over 30 years of executive leadership experience in the medical society arena. He currently serves as the Executive Director, of the Society for Vascular Surgery, an organization of 6,000 members dedicated to the prevention and treatment of vascular disease. Prior to this he served on the Executive Staff of the American Academy of Pediatrics, an organization of 64,000 members dedicated to optimizing the health and well-being of children.

In his various roles Ken has developed and led implementation of 200+ organizational visioning and strategic plans, including the widely published Vision of Pediatrics 2020 project.

He also has a strong passion for leadership development. Ken is a founder and served on the Steering Committees of multiple leadership program initiatives including the AAP Pediatric Leadership Alliance and AAMSE Leadership Academy, and has been a principal curriculum architect, and lead faculty, for programs reaching over 3,000 thousand physicians and health professionals with the message and skills to lead.

Ken has an impressive history of volunteer service and leadership in his profession as well as his community.

  • He served as 2009 President of the American Association of Medical Society Executives (AAMSE)
  • Founder and past Chairman of the Membership Directors Consortium of the Council on Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS)
  • Past Chairman of the Board of the Make a Wish Foundation of Illinois
  • Past Chairman of the National Chapter Leadership Council of Make a Wish of America
  • President of FD NOW, a national foundation Ken created with his spouse, Ann, to find treatment and cure for their son’s illness, familial dysautonomia.
  • Dr. Slaw is the recipient of 2013 University of Illinois Humanitarian Award
  • Dr. Slaw is the recipient of the 2015 University of Illinois-College of Education Distinguished Educator Award.
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